Study shows real partners are no match for ideal mate

By | October 1, 2010

Our ideal image of the perfect partner differs greatly from our real-life partner, according to new research from the University of Sheffield and the University of Montpellier in France. The research found that our actual partners are of a different height, weight and body mass index than those we would ideally choose.

The study, which was published this week (27 September 2010) in the Journal PLoS ONE, found that most men and women express different mating preferences for body morphology than the actual morphology of their partners and the discrepancies between real mates and fantasies were often larger for women than for men.

The study also found that most men would rather have female partners much slimmer than they really have. Most women are not satisfied, either, but contrary to men, while some would like slimmer mates, others prefer bigger ones.

Human mating preferences are increasingly being studied to understand what shapes our complex reproductive behaviour. Whilst previous studies have separately investigated ideal mate choice and actual pairing, this new research was specifically conducted to compare them.

… The paper, entitled `From preferred to actual mate characteristics: the case of human body shape’ by Alexandre Courtiol, Sandrine Picq, Bernard Godelle, Michel Raymond and Jean-Baptiste Ferdy, was published on 27 September 2010 in the PLoS ONE journal and is available online at the below link.

http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0013010

via News releases 2010.

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