Study: Beta males in deep trouble

Maybe it’s the stress of competing for every potential date, or the feeling that you’ve settled for second best. But new research this month suggests that coming of age in an environment where men outnumber women might be so stressful that it affects men’s health even decades after puberty has run its course.

Writing in the August issue of the journal Demography, researchers from Hong Kong and the U.S. show that 1950s Wisconsin men who graduated in classes with a high ratio of male students to female students went on to face elevated death rates nearly 50 years later, relative to the men who graduated in classes with a less skewed sex ratio.