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Science Today is a daily radio feature produced by the University of California for the CBS Radio Network. From breakthroughs in medicine, agriculture and the environment to insights into the world around us, Science Today covers it all.

Posts tagged with ‘relationships’

Whether in fiction or history, women have often gotten a bad rap for being fickle. But it may just be evolution. A landmark UCLA meta-analysis suggests that ovulating women have evolved to prefer mates who display “sexy traits.” Psychologist Martie Haselton, an expert in behavioral changes at ovulation, explains that these more masculine and dominant traits are not typically desired in long-term mates.

Women who were partnered with men, who at one point in the study they rated them as very satisfying long-term partners, but not the sexiest guys around, that those women experienced increases in attraction to men other than their partner on fertile days of the cycle. So, it’s as if women on fertile days place a premium on male partner’s sexiness and if their male partner isn’t sexy, then women start to notice other men.

While these findings may seem depressing, Haselton argues that just understanding this dynamic can help couples improve their relationships when in conflict. 

*Photo: the very masculine and sexy Burt Lancaster.