Allure Mag: Scientific Study Showing Men Prefer Slim Women Is 'Dangerous,' Shouldn't 'Exist'

Chris Menahan
Jul. 17, 2017

Studies showing men prefer slim women are "triggering," "dangerous," "pointless," "irresponsible" and don't "need to exist," according to Allure magazine.

Writer Rosemary Donahue writes in Allure, "This Study About Which Types of Women’s Bodies Men Prefer Is Pointless and Irresponsible":
A study that didn't need to exist in the first place had results that will surprise no one, because that's the way things work these days. The study, published in PeerJ and titled "The relationship of female physical attractiveness to body fatness," aimed to examine exactly what the title suggests -- how physically attractive women are to men (because heteronormativity) based on their "body fatness." The abstract to the study itself holds some real gems about the relationship between health and aesthetic, like this funny little quote, "Aspects of the female body may be attractive because they signal evolutionary fitness. Greater body fatness might reflect greater potential to survive famines, but individuals carrying larger fat stores may have poor health and lower fertility in non-famine conditions." That sounds less like something out of a scientific paper than something someone's insensitive grandmother would tell them, if she were strangely into Darwinism.
The study was done in 2015 and around half of the scientists who worked on it were women.

We can be sure their intentions were not to help women find mates and get in shape, instead they were clearly motivated by a desire to hurt obese women's feelings.
Red Online wrote about the study, and the article headline was provocative if not triggering. It reads, "'Men Still Prefer Women To Be Young And Skinny', Says New Study" noting that this preference has existed for a while and the study wasn't of urgent need -- but since it's been done, let's dissect the study and the article.
Even though obesity is on the rise, there's no urgent "need" for such a study because it could cause hurt feelings.

Donahue went on to say the study itself was "demeaning" because participants rated women's attractiveness.
Researchers conducting the study used a sample size of 1,327 men from only 10 countries. While that sample size is fairly decent, surveying men from only 10 countries can hardly be seen as a comprehensive guide to what men of today really think about women. The participants were all shown 21 sample images of women with varying BMIs and asked to rate the attractiveness of their bodies. This is a bad and demeaning practice. BMI has been debunked as an indicator for health [Note: that's a total lie], and the procedure they chose to use reinforces a toxic paradigm we see so often today -- rating women based on their attractiveness and nothing else, in a system where aesthetic is the only measure of worth. Though this is arguably the point of the study, normalization of things like this is also the reason we're in this mess.
The study was part of a conspiracy to hurt women's feelings by deceiving them into believing men prefer women who are in shape.
Red Online writes of the study, "The most popular card depicted a female body with a BMI of 19, which is borderline underweight and associated with youth." Okay, so not only do men apparently prefer women thinner and younger, they also prefer women who are borderline underweight (according to the standard of BMI used in this study)? This is another toxic idea to perpetuate...

Writing about these findings as though they're the true window into what men really want is dangerous, especially given that these specific findings literally tell us we'll be more desirable if we're underweight or close to it (and if we somehow get younger).
It said borderline underweight.
...While it's possible that men form their preferences based on societal cues and they're just pawns in the same game that hurts us, as well, it doesn't mean we need to hear any more about it. In fact, we should keep pushing for more diversity and representation -- perhaps, as a byproduct, preferences will change. In the meantime, forget the studies. The body you have is great, just the way it is.
Your body is great if your BMI is 19, as the study shows.

Incidentally, at the bottom of their article they autoplay a video showing what they consider to be the ideal body type:

Take notes, ladies.

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