Scientists have discovered the ugly truth about attractiveness

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Trying to stay attractive is painful.

Peer pressure, social media, advertising, and relationships can influence how we try to present ourselves, and we can start seeing our health and body in a negative light.

If it gets out of hand it can be a real drain on our moods and well being.

You probably factor in the attractiveness of your partner, if you have one, but new research has determined that it could be a factor to your mindset.

Florida State University have discovered that the attractiveness of your partner can impact the way that you choose to diet and stay in shape.

However, these results differ between men and women.

Doctoral student Tania Reynolds told EurekAlert:

The results reveal that having a physically attractive husband may have negative consequences for wives, especially if those wives are not particularly attractive.

The research revealed that women who were deemed to have more attractive partners were more likely to diet.

In contrast, men were less motivated to diet based on their own, or their partners, attractiveness.

The study aims to offer insights into why women fear that they'll fall short of their partners expectations and how that may lead to eating disorders and other health problems.

Andrea Meltzer, the Assistant Professor of Psychology at Florida State University adds:

In order to better understand women's dieting motivations, the findings of this study highlight the value of adopting an approach that focuses on a couple's relationship.

Previous research from Meltzer found that successful marriages were more prevalent when the wife was more attractive than the husband.

113 newlywed couples in their 20s from Dallas, Texas, took part in the survey, answering a questionnaire on their willingness to diet.

Questions ranged from...

I feel extremely guilty after eating.

I'm terrified of gaining weight.

Some of the research shows that women sometimes misjudge how thin their partners would wish them to be.

Reynolds does offer some advice for how this can be avoided:

One way to help these women is for partners to be very reaffirming, reminding them, 'You're beautiful. I love you at any weight or body type'.

Or perhaps focusing on the ways they are a good romantic partner outside of attractiveness and emphasising those strengths: 'I really value you because you're a kind, smart and supportive partner.'

The study sugeested that another possible direction the research could be taken in would be to see how women diet when they are surrounded by other attractive females.

If we understand how women's relationships affect their decision to diet and the social predictors for developing unhealthy eating behaviours.

HT EurkeAlert Science Daily Science Direct

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