Bombshell: Women find muscular men attractive

I … had hoped they’d see the inner beauty. You know, the way we do with them.

This is why I need the iPhone, people.

The finding, by PhD student David Frederick and associate professor Martie Haselton, stemmed in part from a study of 99 UCLA undergraduates of varying brawniness. As described in a news release about the paper (entitled “Lift more weights, find more mates”), the undergrads were photographed and then rated for muscularity on a 9-point scale, where nine was the most muscular and one was the least.

The men were also quizzed about their sexual histories — and the muscular ones, it transpired, were twice as likely as the less muscular to have had more than three sexual partners in their life…

To evolutionary psychologists Frederick and Haselton, this all adds up to a pattern: Muscularity is a sexual attention-getter akin to that show-off peacock’s tail. But both peacock tail and muscles have their downside, and in the latter case, Frederick says, it’s that the muscle-building hormone testosterone is associated with suppression of the immune system.

Thus, Frederick says, muscles are “indicators of mate quality” because — like that preposterous tail — they “demonstrate an ability to flourish in the face of what’s really a drag on the system.”


Really? It’s not that muscular types have less fat and thus are less at risk for the various health problems that come with obesity or that they’re more physically intimidating and therefore better able to protect/provide? It’s that they’ve triumphed over the scourge of testosterone?

I’m skeptical, but no matter. The thesis has already been debunked.

Besides, there are other paths to happiness.

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