After a long stressful day there are plenty of ways to blow off some steam. Is trying to hook up with a fat girl one them? Perhaps.
A study released today in the journal PLOS ONE revealed that when men are under more pressure than normal, they tend to gravitate towards heavier women. When they're calm, they go for the slender ones.
In a sample size of 81 men, researchers put roughly half of them in anxiety-producing situations— a mock job interview; asking them to solve complex math problems— while the other half were left to relax. Then each group was asked to rate the attractiveness of women who were extremely thin to obese.
The high-stress group ranked the overweight women higher than the non-stress group, and in general the results seemed to indicate that the high-stress group found a wider array of body types attractive.
The authors of the study say that the results imply that the preference for chubbier women has more to do with environment and biology than aesthetics. Their theory, Environmental Security Hypothesis, insists that when men are stressed, they favor heavier types of women.
"[Stress] may lead to a general preference for more mature physical traits in a potential partner," say the authors. "Because such traits are associated with improved ability to handle environmental stress.”