How much of a role does weight play in men and women choosing their potential mate? If you are worried about how your weight affects your chances at attracting someone, there’s a crazy new study available to help you calculate your chances.
It’s good to see scholars are putting their education and intellect to such worthwhile and well-reasoned pursuits. Columbia University researcher and economist Pierre-Andre Chiappori recently came out with a study titled “Fatter Attraction: Anthropometric and Socioeconomic Matching on the Marriage Market.” In this study, he has created an actual mathematical formula measuring how important weight is, and what heavier men and women need to do to compensate for those extra pounds.
How does this balancing act work? Men’s “worth” is dependent on a sliding scale considering weight and earnings. According to Chiappori, women will overlook men’s extra girth if they make more money.
Chiappori measures a man’s BMI up against his salary. For every 10 percent increase in a man’s BMI, he must increase his salary by 2 percent to compete in the same dating pool.
No raise on the horizon? A man best be hitting the gym if he wants to score the type of women he’s accustomed to. Of course, hitting the gym may result in him shedding fat and gaining muscle, which weighs more than fat. His BMI will then go up and he’s shot himself in the foot. Does Chiappori take stock options into consideration? With the flagging real estate market, should men be taking a few extra laps around the track?
Women don’t need to have the bank account that men do. Instead, the heavier the woman is, the better educated she needs to be.
For example, if a woman who is 5’ 8’ and 140 lbs gains 7 pounds, she’d need another year of education to maintain her level of attractiveness.
By that logic, if you became anorexic, you could drop out of high school and be a man-magnet. Conversely, the more books a woman reads, the more Twinkies she can eat. Perhaps heavier women should become professional students, become doctors, lawyers and gain doctorates in astrophysics and botany. The rich husbands they snag can simply write a check to pay off their student loans.
Chiaporri’s advice if you want to up your worth on the dating market? Cut down on the fast food and get on the treadmill.“It’s easier to change your BMI than it is to change your salary or education level,” Chiaporri says. If you haven’t figured it out already, other qualities that lend to physical attractiveness than numbers on a scale are ignored. Similarly, personality has no part in this study.
Chiaporri’s crunching of numbers is an exercise in idiocy. This study and its usefulness is flawed on so many levels I can’t even waste the breath (or keystrokes) venting about it. Despite its over-simplification and limited and short-sighted focus, what it does is preys on an unfortunate truth. Namely that the overweight suffer hurtles in finding a partner. You think you aren’t good enough and settle. Or fail to demand the respect you deserve. Dating prospects prey on your insecurities. Insecurities prevent you from being confident enough to show who and how great you are. On the flip side, you lose out on someone great by being short-sighted yourself.
Taking a breath. I feel better having gotten that out. Thanks for listening.