Man flu: Worse than childbirth (apparently).





I don’t want to alarm you, but there is an underground health epidemic that is rife in your local community. Despite a team of dedicated health professionals committed to the cause, there is still no known cure. This hideous condition is known as – Man flu.

Man flu only targets the male of the species and can be identified by the following symptoms

  • fatigue
  • headache
  • runny or congested nose
  • muscle or joint aches and pains
  • chills

Just as an FYI, you should know that this post is sponsored by the Medibank 24/7 Health Advice Line. But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in her own words.

What’s that? That sounds a lot like regular flu you say? Well spotted and correct! Man flu presents exactly the same as it does with regular flu except for an added degree of difficulty commonly known as “chronic exaggeration”. In fact, Man Flu, according to absolutely no credible source whatsoever is:

13 times worse than normal flu

More unbearable than childbirth

Easily recognisable when the patient continues to tell you he really wants to go into work but is too selfless to risk spreading his awful condition amongst his work colleagues.

Only cured by moaning. A lot of moaning.

But all jokes and massive sweeping generalisations aside, men just aren’t all that good at you know, admitting that something is wrong and basically, looking after themselves.

In fact, research shows that woman are much more likely to stay home with a cold than a man who will soldier on regardless, far too stubborn to seek advice from a health professional. Further to this, research undertaken on the topic suggests that of all the help and advice sought on the Medibank 24/7 Health Advice Line to discuss cold and flu symptoms, a woman is more than twice as likely to do so as a man. On top of this, statistically 56% of men don’t take any medication and an even smaller percentage takes preventative vitamins such as Vitamin C to stave off colds and flu.


And what about preventative health measures? Diabetes, cholesterol, Prostate checks?


So how do we change this mindset? Get guys to a) be on top of their health issues before they become a problem and b) get treatment when they need it? Well, from my experience, do it for them. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve literally rung the doctor, made the appointment and driven my husband to a health practitioner. It’s not that he can’t or even that he’s opposed to the idea, he just genuinely believes it applies to everyone EXCEPT him.

Like all of us mere mortals there is also the fear that the news won’t be good. This mindset isn’t gender owned, it’s a fear we all hold, but I guess women as such, are doers and understand that knowledge is power. If there is a problem, with the medical advances of today, we can usually fix it. As long as we find out soon enough.

This of course brings us back to the man flu. Here’s a truthbomb – there is nothing that can actually be done about the flu – man or regular. Rest, plenty of fluid and lying on the couch watching crappy daytime TV is the only known cure. But maybe what needs to happen is both men AND women need to take a little from pot A and a little from pot B and combine the two. Maybe we women should relax, give in a little and stay home, thus not infecting unsuspecting colleagues and/or fellow public transport goers when we are feeling generally unwell and men should perhaps just also relax and remember that they aren’t actually dying, it just feels that way. And maybe get a flu shot.


Also guys – go to the doctor – for all of our sakes.

Medibank 24/7 Health Advice Line conducted some street interviews to see what the general public knew or thought about Man Flu – watch it now:

As part of Mi Health, members with Medibank hospital cover can call a Medibank nurse with any health questions, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Medibank nurses complement the care given by GPs and other health professionals so consumers can trust they’ll deliver sound advice, and answer most questions.

If Medibank nurses think a GP should be seen, they can use their clinical knowledge to call your local GP clinic, explain the condition to assist getting you an appointment.

This post is sponsored by Medibank 24/7 Health Advice Line. Comments on this post are just for this post. If you have questions about sponsored posts or the choice of advertisers please click here for details of how to submit a query or comment.

Tell us about the last time you battled flu?  Do the men in your lives suffer from man flu?