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Study: Tattoos may toughen people up

By Owen Weldon     Mar 14, 2016 in Lifestyle
The idea behind the tattooing practices done by military personal, get it to prove you're tough enough, has been looked at closely by researchers at the University of Alabama. They are confirming that idea.
The study found that getting tattooed is similar to exercising. The body reacts to the stress of the needle repeatedly piercing the skin and the body feels exhausted.
The authors of the study, Christopher D. Lynn, Johnna T. Dominguez, and Jason A. Decaro, wrote that both competition and tattooing are ways to demonstrate fitness, and tattoos may amplify the fitness signal.
Initially, a tattoo session may leave a person feeling weak, but it builds immunity and getting more tattoos makes the person receiving them stronger.
Volunteers from a tattoo shop in Leeds and Tuscaloosa took part in the study. Each volunteer's tattoos were examined and the researchers examined how long each tattooing session took. The researchers also measured the levels of cortisol and antibody immunoglobulin A in the participants' saliva samples.
Cortisol levels caused a major decrease in immunoglobulin A, among those who had their first tattoo. However, those who had multiple tattoos only experienced slight drops in immunoglobulin A levels before and after their sessions. Researchers suggested this may be because of a stronger immune response.
Dr. Lynn said your body returns to an equilibrium after the stress response. Getting numerous tattoos stresses the body over and over again and this leads to the body adjusting to it instead of going back to the original set point.
Lynn said in a way, getting a tattoo is kind of like taking your immune system to the gym.
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