If your favorite NFL team didn't make it into the Super Bowl, you may still have something to cheer about.
A new study, published in the American Journal of Health Economics, found that having a local team in the Super Bowl caused an 18 percent increase in influenza deaths for the population over age 65.
Results are most obvious in years when the dominant influenza strain is more virulent, or when the Super Bowl occurs closer to the peak of influenza season.
Fear not, host cities. The study found no impact on influenza mortality in hosting cities.
After closer examination, the findings are not that surprising. The study suggests that when a person's team makes it to the Super Bowl, there is more of a chance they will go to parties filled with more people in close contact, and sharing food. Combine that with the height of flu season, and it makes a perfect combination to spread the virus.