Fat people are seen as more interested in long-term relationships, study finds 


What your WEIGHT says about your dating intentions: Fat people are seen as more interested in long-term relationships – while slim people appear to prefer flings, study finds

  • Participants were shown four male and four female computer-generated bodies
  • They either had high or low fat levels and either small or large muscles or breasts
  • The higher-fat figures were rated as more interested in long-term relationships
  • Researchers suggest high fat may indicate that you’d be a better parent 

While many daters are desperate to find love, others are happy to play the field and settle for short-term flings.

Now, a new study has revealed how your weight influences people’s perceptions of your dating intentions.

Researchers from the University of Arkansas claim that fat people are seen as more interested in long-term relationships, while slim people appear to prefer flings.

Researchers from the University of Arkansas claim that fat people are seen as more interested in long-term relationships, while slim people appear to prefer flings (stock image)

Researchers from the University of Arkansas claim that fat people are seen as more interested in long-term relationships, while slim people appear to prefer flings (stock image)

A group of 295 participants were shown four male and four female computer-generated bodies that either had high or low fat levels, and either small or large muscles or breasts

A group of 295 participants were shown four male and four female computer-generated bodies that either had high or low fat levels, and either small or large muscles or breasts

Women are seen as more attractive when they wear high HEELS

While many women only dig out their heels for a wedding or special event, a new study may encourage you to dust the stilettos off more often.

Researchers from Bucknell University in Pennsylvania claim that women in high heels are seen as more sexually attractive, physically attractive, feminine and of a higher status.

‘While women’s fashion constantly evolves, this research aligns well with previous research that men perceive women in high heels as more attractive than those in flat shoes,’ the team wrote in their study.

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In the study, the team set out to understand how our physical features infer our mating preferences.

‘Adiposity [being overweight], a traditionally unattractive feature, connotes parental ability that could implicate individuals as preferring long-term mating (LTM) strategies that emphasize monogamy and biparental investment,’ the researchers wrote in their study, published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships.

‘This study considered how such bodily features shape perceptions of mating orientations.’

A group of 295 participants were shown four male and four female computer-generated bodies that either had high or low fat levels, and either small or large muscles or breasts.

After viewing each image, the participants were asked to rate whether they thought the person would be interested in long-term relationships, or short-term relationships.

The results revealed that participants rated the high-fat women and men as more inclined towards long-term relationships than slim women and slim men.

Meanwhile, larger-breasted women and men with larger muscles were rated as more likely to want a short-term relationship than those with smaller breasts or muscles.

Speaking to PsyPost, Mitch Brown, first author of the study, said: ‘We stereotype people’s mating interests based on how we expect their bodies to shape their self-perception.

‘If you perceive yourself as highly attractive, you may feel like you could engage in short-term sexual strategies more readily because of the higher likelihood of success.

‘Large muscles and breasts are attractive on men and women, so these features should lead perceivers to view these features as diagnostic of an interest in a short-term strategy.

‘Conversely, because of the heuristic association with parental ability and body fat, in addition to perceptions of body fat as less desirable for a one-night stand, participants viewed higher levels of fat as connoting interest in long-term mating.’

The researchers highlight that different distributions of body fat could influence the results.

For example, previous studies have shown that women with more weight on their stomachs are more stigmatised than women with fat on their hips, thighs and bums.

‘Future research should consider targets’ proclivity toward infidelity, mate guarding, or the specific type of parental investment they would have (many other opportunities exist for future work),’ Brown explained. 

‘I would also encourage discussion on which muscles are most important for these assessment in men (e.g., purely upper body or all over) and how different fat depositions in women’s bodies could shape perceptions (e.g., comparing apple and pear shapes).’ 

Kim Kardashian’s hourglass figure is more harmful for women’s body image than Kate Moss’ thin frame, study claims 

Kim Kardashian (pictured) is an example of a woman with the 'slim-thick' or 'hourglass' body ideal - which researchers say is 'characterized by a large butt and thighs and small waist and flat stomach'

Kim Kardashian (pictured) is an example of a woman with the ‘slim-thick’ or ‘hourglass’ body ideal – which researchers say is ‘characterized by a large butt and thighs and small waist and flat stomach’

Kim Kardashian‘s hourglass figure is more harmful for women’s body image than Kate Moss’ thin frame, a new study claims. 

Researchers in Canada showed women Instagram photos of either ‘slim-thick’, ‘thin’ or ‘fit-ideal’ body types. 

Slim-thick or ‘hourglass’, as seen in Kim Kardashian, Kylie Jenner, and Beyoncé, is characterised by ‘a large butt and thighs and small waist and flat stomach’. 

Meanwhile, ‘thin’ describes slender shapes with flat stomachs and small waists, like Kate Moss, and ‘fit’ describes more toned and athletic female physiques.

The researchers found women exposed to ‘slim-thick’ photos experienced more dissatisfaction towards their own weight and appearance.

It’s thought that women with ‘slim-thick’ bodies have become far more prevalent in Western culture in the last few years, partly thanks to social media.

But the pressure felt by young women to attain such a physique could be even more harmful than pressure in society to be ultra-thin. 

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