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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

Relationships between the average ratings of physical attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images and waist to hip ratios (WHR) of the subjects in the images across ten different populations.Error bar referred to the standard error of both directions.
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fig-4: Relationships between the average ratings of physical attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images and waist to hip ratios (WHR) of the subjects in the images across ten different populations.Error bar referred to the standard error of both directions.

Mentions: Scatter plots of female attractiveness in relation to BF% (Fig. 3) BMI (Fig. S2) and WHR (Fig. 4) were generated for each country and univariate analyses performed. We found a significant negative linear relationship between BF% and attractiveness in all the populations. Parameters of the univariate regression models are in Table 2. Across all the populations the linear fit models explained between 46.3 and 85.3% of the variance in attractiveness. The poorest fits were for Nigeria and Senegal. Including BF% squared did not result in a significant improvement in any of the relationships. The pattern for BMI was almost identical (Fig. S2). In none of the populations did a peaked relationship fit the data, contrary to what was predicted a priori from the evolutionary model (Fig. 1).


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)

Relationships between the average ratings of physical attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images and waist to hip ratios (WHR) of the subjects in the images across ten different populations.Error bar referred to the standard error of both directions.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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

fig-4: Relationships between the average ratings of physical attractiveness of 21 DXA soft tissue images and waist to hip ratios (WHR) of the subjects in the images across ten different populations.Error bar referred to the standard error of both directions.
Mentions: Scatter plots of female attractiveness in relation to BF% (Fig. 3) BMI (Fig. S2) and WHR (Fig. 4) were generated for each country and univariate analyses performed. We found a significant negative linear relationship between BF% and attractiveness in all the populations. Parameters of the univariate regression models are in Table 2. Across all the populations the linear fit models explained between 46.3 and 85.3% of the variance in attractiveness. The poorest fits were for Nigeria and Senegal. Including BF% squared did not result in a significant improvement in any of the relationships. The pattern for BMI was almost identical (Fig. S2). In none of the populations did a peaked relationship fit the data, contrary to what was predicted a priori from the evolutionary model (Fig. 1).

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