Super Bowl weekend in just a few days away and it’s the topic of conversation everywhere we turn. Who’s going to win? Which team are you betting on? It’s all very exciting, but a new study suggests that the Super Bowl can be a hazard to your health. Surprisingly, the culprit is not all the chicken wings and other greasy bar foods that most will be consuming as they watch the game.
The stress of Super Bowl can trigger heart attacks, according to new research from Good Samaritan Hospital and the University of Southern California. Cardiac deaths can jump 15 percent in the hometown of the losing team, while in the hometown of the winning team there is a decline in heart-related deaths.
A study the researchers published in 2009 showed that in LA after the 1980 Super Bowl loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the total number of deaths rose by 17 percent compared to years when the home team didn’t make it to the finals.
For this new study, the researchers reanalyzed data with a focus on demographics, and the results show that men are not the only die-hard football fans. While the men showed a 15-percent increase in cardiac deaths following a Super Bowl loss, women showed a 27-percent increase in cardiac deaths, which may prove that women can experience the same connection to sports that men can.
Lead researcher, Dr. Robert Kloner, also offered another explanation in an interview with CTV, ‘Another possibility’and it’s just a theory’is that men’s reactions to a loss is very negative or very angry. It’s possible that that negative reaction could spill over and affect the emotional state of the female partner.”
People with weak hearts are being told to be aware of risks of watching the big game. "Physicians and patients should be aware that stressful games might elicit an emotional response that could trigger a cardiac event," said Kloner in a news release.
I’m not a fan of football so cannot fully understand the emotions that come with a Super Bowl loss. To be honest, I can’t really think of anytime where a team I was really invested in has loss a major competition. Call it luck or being smart, but the teams I support either have no chance of making it to the finals of any major competition, or are the dominant team and are almost guaranteed to win. And in the odd chance they don’t win, I blame it on the referee.