Hay Fever protects people from certain types of cancer

For millions of people around the world, hay fever is an annual disaster that can spoil the spring and summer. But with all the discomfort that this disease brings, hay fever, as it turned out, has unexpected health benefits.Scientists from the United States claim that this disease has anticancer protection. A new study showed that patients suffering from seasonal allergies, the likelihood of developing certain types of cancer may be significantly lower than those who are not susceptible to an allergic reaction to pollen.

To reach such conclusions, experts tracked about 1.7 million people who had been diagnosed with various types of cancer from 1992 to 2013. These people were compared with people of the same age and gender, but without tumors. Experts compared the rates of hay fever in both groups and found significantly more cases of the disease among participants without cancer. It was found that the incidence of throat cancer, tonsil cancer, esophagus cancer and cervical cancer was reduced by a third in patients with a history of hay fever.

Scientists can not say exactly why hay fever of all common allergic conditions may have a similar effect, as well as why it reduces the risk of some types of cancer, and not others. One of the theories explaining this phenomenon is that hay fever, more than other common types of allergies, contributes to the activation of the immune system. When hay fever, the immune system mistakenly perceives harmless pollen as a threat and produces histamine to rid the body of potential danger. The immune system is constantly on high alert, scanning the body for threats. As a result, the immune system promptly detects cancer cells and immediately destroys them.


Doctors in no way urge patients with hay fever to leave their disease without treatment in order to reduce their risk of developing certain types of tumors. However, the work done can lead to the development of new drugs that will affect certain immune cells that are extremely active in hay fever. “Using the body’s immune system to fight cancer has already revolutionized the treatment of patients,” says Professor James Spicer. “But studying how people develop allergies will help attract a whole family of immune cells to fight cancer.”



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