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The relationship of female physical attractiveness to body fatness.

Wang G, Djafarian K, Egedigwe CA, El Hamdouchi A, Ojiambo R, Ramuth H, Wallner-Liebmann SJ, Lackner S, Diouf A, Sauciuvenaite J, Hambly C, Vaanholt LM, Faries MD, Speakman JR - PeerJ (2015)

Bottom Line: WHR was a significant independent but less important factor, which was more important (greater r (2)) in African populations.Raters appeared to use body fat percentage (BF%) and BMI as markers of age.The covariance of BF% and BMI with age indicates that the role of body fatness alone, as a marker of attractiveness, has been overestimated.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: State Key Laboratory of Molecular Developmental Biology, Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences , Beijing , China.

ABSTRACT
Aspects of the female body may be attractive because they signal evolutionary fitness. Greater body fatness might reflect greater potential to survive famines, but individuals carrying larger fat stores may have poor health and lower fertility in non-famine conditions. A mathematical statistical model using epidemiological data linking fatness to fitness traits, predicted a peaked relationship between fatness and attractiveness (maximum at body mass index (BMI) = 22.8 to 24.8 depending on ethnicity and assumptions). Participants from three Caucasian populations (Austria, Lithuania and the UK), three Asian populations (China, Iran and Mauritius) and four African populations (Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and Senegal) rated attractiveness of a series of female images varying in fatness (BMI) and waist to hip ratio (WHR). There was an inverse linear relationship between physical attractiveness and body fatness or BMI in all populations. Lower body fat was more attractive, down to at least BMI = 19. There was no peak in the relationship over the range we studied in any population. WHR was a significant independent but less important factor, which was more important (greater r (2)) in African populations. Predictions based on the fitness model were not supported. Raters appeared to use body fat percentage (BF%) and BMI as markers of age. The covariance of BF% and BMI with age indicates that the role of body fatness alone, as a marker of attractiveness, has been overestimated.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Relationship between the rankings by males and females of the attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images of females, of varying BMI and waist to hip ratio, across 9 populations (except Senegal).The X-axis is the rating by females and the Y-axis the rating by males.
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fig-2: Relationship between the rankings by males and females of the attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images of females, of varying BMI and waist to hip ratio, across 9 populations (except Senegal).The X-axis is the rating by females and the Y-axis the rating by males.

Mentions: To investigate the influence of rater sex on perceived attractiveness we performed the study using both sexes as raters. Scatter plots of the average attractiveness rating of females raters against male raters for the 21 images in each of the nine populations [excluding Senegal where all the participants were female] showed that there was strong concordance in the perceptions of female attractiveness between the sexes in all populations (UK: R2 = 0.9778; China: R2 = 0.99; Iran: R2 = 0.9888; Mauritius,R2 = 0.97; Kenya: R2 = 0.9791; Morocco R2 = 0.9906; Nigeria: R2 = 0.9428) (Fig. 2). We also explored whether individual images were rated differently. There were no significant differences between female and male raters at the 95% confidence level (Bonferroni corrected for 188 tests) for all of the images across nine countries (Table S1). Although there was no overall effect when using the Bonferroni correction, we noted an interesting pattern in the unadjusted probability values. Among the Caucasian populations only 1/62 tests showed a significant difference in the ratings between males and females. In the Asian populations 9/63 tests were significant and in the African populations 14/63 tests showed significantly different ratings between males and females. Hence, while there was no overall effect using the adjusted values, it is possible there were ethnic differences in the extent to which males and females agreed on the attractiveness of particular images, and the use of the Bonferroni correction was too stringent to allow us to detect this effect.


The relationship of female physical attractiveness to body fatness.

Wang G, Djafarian K, Egedigwe CA, El Hamdouchi A, Ojiambo R, Ramuth H, Wallner-Liebmann SJ, Lackner S, Diouf A, Sauciuvenaite J, Hambly C, Vaanholt LM, Faries MD, Speakman JR - PeerJ (2015)

Relationship between the rankings by males and females of the attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images of females, of varying BMI and waist to hip ratio, across 9 populations (except Senegal).The X-axis is the rating by females and the Y-axis the rating by males.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4556148&req=5

fig-2: Relationship between the rankings by males and females of the attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images of females, of varying BMI and waist to hip ratio, across 9 populations (except Senegal).The X-axis is the rating by females and the Y-axis the rating by males.
Mentions: To investigate the influence of rater sex on perceived attractiveness we performed the study using both sexes as raters. Scatter plots of the average attractiveness rating of females raters against male raters for the 21 images in each of the nine populations [excluding Senegal where all the participants were female] showed that there was strong concordance in the perceptions of female attractiveness between the sexes in all populations (UK: R2 = 0.9778; China: R2 = 0.99; Iran: R2 = 0.9888; Mauritius,R2 = 0.97; Kenya: R2 = 0.9791; Morocco R2 = 0.9906; Nigeria: R2 = 0.9428) (Fig. 2). We also explored whether individual images were rated differently. There were no significant differences between female and male raters at the 95% confidence level (Bonferroni corrected for 188 tests) for all of the images across nine countries (Table S1). Although there was no overall effect when using the Bonferroni correction, we noted an interesting pattern in the unadjusted probability values. Among the Caucasian populations only 1/62 tests showed a significant difference in the ratings between males and females. In the Asian populations 9/63 tests were significant and in the African populations 14/63 tests showed significantly different ratings between males and females. Hence, while there was no overall effect using the adjusted values, it is possible there were ethnic differences in the extent to which males and females agreed on the attractiveness of particular images, and the use of the Bonferroni correction was too stringent to allow us to detect this effect.

Bottom Line: WHR was a significant independent but less important factor, which was more important (greater r (2)) in African populations.Raters appeared to use body fat percentage (BF%) and BMI as markers of age.The covariance of BF% and BMI with age indicates that the role of body fatness alone, as a marker of attractiveness, has been overestimated.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: State Key Laboratory of Molecular Developmental Biology, Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences , Beijing , China.

ABSTRACT
Aspects of the female body may be attractive because they signal evolutionary fitness. Greater body fatness might reflect greater potential to survive famines, but individuals carrying larger fat stores may have poor health and lower fertility in non-famine conditions. A mathematical statistical model using epidemiological data linking fatness to fitness traits, predicted a peaked relationship between fatness and attractiveness (maximum at body mass index (BMI) = 22.8 to 24.8 depending on ethnicity and assumptions). Participants from three Caucasian populations (Austria, Lithuania and the UK), three Asian populations (China, Iran and Mauritius) and four African populations (Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and Senegal) rated attractiveness of a series of female images varying in fatness (BMI) and waist to hip ratio (WHR). There was an inverse linear relationship between physical attractiveness and body fatness or BMI in all populations. Lower body fat was more attractive, down to at least BMI = 19. There was no peak in the relationship over the range we studied in any population. WHR was a significant independent but less important factor, which was more important (greater r (2)) in African populations. Predictions based on the fitness model were not supported. Raters appeared to use body fat percentage (BF%) and BMI as markers of age. The covariance of BF% and BMI with age indicates that the role of body fatness alone, as a marker of attractiveness, has been overestimated.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus