If you’re still playing the dating game, finding a mate who rarely gets sick may be more of a perk than you think. A new study finds that married couples tend to have similar immune systems, or immune systems that mimic each other’s over time.
NY Mag’s Science of Us reports about a study published in the journal Nature Immunology that finds when you compare the immune systems of married couples, there are a lot more similarities than when you compare two random strangers. In fact, scientists found 50% less variation between married couples than when they compared one random person against another.
So how is it that over time we develop similar immune systems to our partners? Since only 25% of our immune system is based on our genetics, that means the other 75% can be linked to other factors like environment, how often you exercise, and diet.
It makes sense that two people who live in the same house, breathe in the same pollutants, eat the same meals and may have the same activity level would have similar immune systems. There’s also the factor of sharing the same viruses that can make small changes to your immune system over time.
What do you think of the new study that suggests married couples have similar immune systems?
Do you feel like you and your partner get sick at the same time?