Mythbusters – Die Gesetze der Anziehung

 

Myth Status Notes
A person’s intelligence deteriorates in the presence of members of the opposite gender. Busted Adam designed a test in which the subject would have to identify the colors in which words were displayed on a screen as quickly as possible, while Jamie built a testing room on a commercial film stage. Five men and five women took the test twice, first with a member of the same gender sitting nearby in the room as a control run, then with a member of the opposite gender.On their first run, the men achieved an average of 56.8 seconds, while the women averaged 50.2. However, the second run gave an average of 46.8 seconds for both groups, indicating an overall improvement in performance and leading Adam and Jamie to call the myth busted.
Men are more strongly attracted to blonde women than those of other hair colors. Busted Adam and Jamie set up a speed-dating scenario in which 9 men spoke to each of 9 women for 3 minutes, then rated them on a numerical scale. The test was repeated three times, with a different group of men each time; the women used wigs to pass themselves off as blondes, brunettes, or redheads, changing them after each test so that every woman had all three hair colors. Adam and Jamie found no significant differences among the groups in any test, so they judged the myth to be busted.
Pheromone sprays can increase a person’s attractiveness toward the opposite gender. Busted Adam built a turntable with 10 airtight chambers, each holding a T-shirt treated with some combination of pheromone and/or sweat from either Adam or Jamie. A clean, unused shirt was also included as a control. One at a time, 50 women smelled every shirt and then voted for their favorite scent of the group. The shirt bearing both the pheromones and Adam’s sweat proved the most popular, with 38% of the votes, but others either expressed a strong dislike of that smell or chose the control shirt. As a result, Adam and Jamie declared the myth busted.

Storm in a D-Cup

Myth Status Notes
In the service industry, women with larger breasts tend to receive higher tips. Confirmed Kari volunteered to work in a coffee shop, disguising her appearance with a wig and makeup and using three different bust sizes: „small“ (taped down to achieve a reduction of two cup sizes), „medium“ (no alteration), and „large“ (DDD size). Grant and Tory watched her through hidden cameras and gave her a tip jar rigged to separate tips given by men from those given by women.They focused on the tips Kari collected from the first 80 male customers on each shift. During the „small“ and „medium“ shifts, she collected $72 in tips, while the „large“ shift yielded $98, with both men and women tipping almost 40% more. The team classified the myth as confirmed.

Money Talk$

Myth Status Notes
Women are more attracted to financially successful men. Confirmed The Build Team invited a group of 250 women to the Roxy Theater in San Francisco and showed them pictures of 12 men, with names, locations, and actual occupations. The women rated each man on a 1-10 scale, after which the team presented the same pictures again, but with more lucrative occupations shown for half of the men. In the first test, the men earned an average rating of 56 out of 120, while the men with changed occupations earned 68 out of 120 in the second.

Erhöht der Geruch von Frauen an ihren fruchtbaren Tagen die intrasexuelle Konkurrenz unter Frauen?

Eine interessante Studie beschäftigt sich mit der Frage, ob Frauen fruchtbare Tage riechen können und was dies bewirkt:

Evolutionary theories of mating suggest that changes in fertility across the menstrual cycle play an important role in sexual selection. In line with this framework, the current research examined whether olfactory cues to the fertility of a same-sex rival would prompt hormonal signs of intrasexual competition in women. Women exposed to the scent of another woman close to ovulation subsequently displayed higher levels of testosterone than women exposed to the scent of a woman far from ovulation. Whereas women exposed to the scent of a woman in the mid-luteal phase displayed sizable decreases in testosterone over time, no such decline was observed among women exposed to the scent of a woman near ovulation. Thus, olfactory cues signaling a rival’s heightened level of fertility were associated with endocrinological responses in women that could be linked to intrasexual competition.

Quelle: Attunement to the fertility status of same-sex rivals: women’s testosterone responses to olfactory ovulation cues

Ich habe leider nur den Abstract gefunden, aber wenn ich es richtig verstanden habe, dann reagieren Frauen auf den Geruch einer fruchtbaren Frau mit einer Erhöhung des Testosteronspiegels.

Das wäre aus vielen Gründen interessant:

  • Es würde erst einmal bedeuten, dass es olfaktorische Möglichkeiten gibt, an denen man erkennen kann, dass eine Frau fruchtbar ist, was gut zu den Ergebnissen von Miller passt, dass Stripperinnen an ihren fruchtbaren Tagen mehr Trinkgeld bekommen.
  • Auch bei Männern steigt der Testosteronspiegel, wenn sie den gleichen Geruch wahrnehmen

Aus einem Artikel dazu:

Women exposed to the scent of high fertility females displayed greater levels of testosterone. The smell of a low fertility woman actually caused testosterone levels in the sniffers to significantly drop.

We are not consciously noting the smells of other people all day long, unless a particularly good or bad smell hits us, but odors are working on us, even when we don’t realize it.

„Humans are influenced much more strongly by ovulatory cues than we tend to think,“ Maner explained. „For the most part, people aren’t likely to be consciously aware of the effects ovulatory cues have over them. There is solid evidence that people find the scent of ovulation to be pleasant and attractive (relative to the scent of a woman who is far from ovulation), but beyond that, most of the behavioral and hormonal effects are likely to occur below the conscious radar.“

Die Forscher vermuten, dass damit eine Vorbereitung auf intrasexuelle Konkurrenz erfolgt, da Testosteron eben das Revierverhalten und die Wettbewerbsbereitschaft steigert. Insofern könnte hier eine gewisse Mate-Guarding-Routine ablaufen, indem eben Frauen aufpassen, dass die andere Frau nicht auf der Suche nach „Guten Genen“ ihren Partner klaut.

Gleichzeitig könnte Testosteron auch den Sextrieb erhöhen, so dass sie eher selbst mit ihrem Freund schläft, was auch ein effektives Mate-Guarding sein kann

Ein interessantes Schlußwort in dem oben verlinkten Artikel:

In all cases, it appears that today’s human social interactions can be driven by how we’ve evolved as primates.

„Some people might like to believe that people aren’t animals, or at least that our behavior isn’t beholden to the same biological processes as other species,“ Maner said.

„But humans,“ he added, „are very similar to other species in many ways, and those similarities are no more apparent than when it comes to sexuality.“

In der Tat.

Pheromone und sexuelle Anziehung

Aus einem Artikel über Pheromone und ihre Auswirkungen bezüglich der sexuelle Anziehung:

Olfactory communication is very common amongst animals, and since the discovery of an accessory olfactory system in humans, possible human olfactory communication has gained considerable scientific interest. The importance of the human sense of smell has by far been underestimated in the past. Humans and other primates have been regarded as primarily ‘optical animals’ with highly developed powers of vision but a relatively undeveloped sense of smell. In recent years this assumption has undergone major revision. Several studies indicate that humans indeed seem to use olfactory communication and are even able to produce and perceive certain pheromones; recent studies have found that pheromones may play an important role in the behavioural and reproduction biology of humans. In this article we review the present evidence of the effect of human pheromones and discuss the role of olfactory cues in human sexual behaviour.

Quelle: Human pheromones and sexual attraction

Dort werden zwei interessante Studien erwähnt:

Two studies which have often been cited as the strongest evidence yet provided for the in fl uence of pheromones on human sociosexual behaviour are those of Cutler et al. [38] and McCoy and Pitino [39] . Both studies employed double blind, placebo-controlled methods and focussed upon the effects of synthetic pheromones on self-reported sociosexual behaviours in young men [38] and women [39] . In the first study [38] 38 male volunteers recorded the occurrence of six socio- sexual behaviours (petting/affection/kissing; formal dates; informal dates; sleeping next to a partner; sexual intercourse; and masturbation) over a 2-week ‘ baseline ’ period. Over the next 6 weeks the volunteers kept the same records while daily applying a male pheromone or a control substance added to their usual aftershave lotion. The authors reported that a significantly higher proportion of pheromone users compared to placebo users showed an increase from baseline in ‘ sexual intercourse ’ and ‘ sleeping next to a romantic partner ’ .

In general 58% of the pheromone group compared to 19% of the placebo group showed increases in two or more behaviours compared to baseline; 41% of the pheromone group compared to 9.5% of the placebo group showed increases in three or more behaviours compared to baseline.

In the second study [39] 36 female volunteers recorded the occurrence of the same six socio-sexual behaviours and an additional behaviour ‘ male approaches ’ over a 2-week ‘ baseline ’ period. Over the next 6 weeks they then either applied a synthetic female pheromone or a control substance added to their usual perfume on a daily basis. While the groups did not differ in their sociosexual behaviours at baseline, a significantly higher proportion of the pheromone group showed increases in the following behaviours: ‘ sexual intercourse ’ , ‘ sleeping next to a partner ’ , ‘ formal dates ’ and ‘ petting/affection/kissing ’ . However, as pheromone exposure can shift the timing of ovulation, the authors recalculated the data to only include the first experimental cycle. After these recalculations the pheromone group only significantly differed from the placebo group in ‘ sexual intercourse ’ and ‘ formal dating ’ . In terms of percentages, three or more sociosexual behaviours increased over baseline in 74% of pheromone users but only 23% of placebo users. As there was no increase in self-reported masturbation the authors argued that the changes did not reflect changes in sexual motivation, but that the pheromones had ‘‘ positive sexual attractant effects … ’’ (p. 374)

Also eine deutlich anregende Wirkung. In dem Artikel wird aber auch gleich noch auf methodische Schwächen eingegangen.

Desweiteren heißt es dort zu der Frage kompatibler Immunsysteme:

Various ‘ good genes ’ theories of sexual selection have emphasised the importance of immunocompetence [40,41] in that females can obtain good genes for their offspring by mating with males whose genes are complementary to their own. A possible mechanism by which this can be achieved is via body odour. The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a large chromosomal region containing closely linked poly- morphic genes that play a role in immunological self/ non-self recognition; this genetic information is relayed by androgen-based pheromones [42] . Numerous studies in rodents have now established that MHC genotype is involved in odour production, and such odours are used in individual discrimination [43] . House mice learn the MHC identity of their family during development and avoid mating with individuals carrying familial MHC genes; they do so through the use of odour cues from urine (e.g. [44,45] ).

Is there any evidence that humans possess these abilities? Some studies have shown that women seem to prefer the odours of immunocompatible men. Wedekind et al. [46] HLA-typed (Human Leukocyte Antigen is the human MHC) 49 women and 44 men and asked the women to rate the attractiveness of the odours of t-shirts worn by three MHC-similar and three MHC-dissimilar men. Women rated the odour of the MHC-dissimilar men as ‘ more pleasant ’ , and this odour was significantly more likely to remind them of their own mate ’ s odour. Interestingly, the preferences of women taking an oral contraceptive were reversed — they preferred the MHC- similar odours. This could be due to the fact that oral contraceptives mimic the effects of pregnancy, and pregnant females may be attracted to MHC-similar individuals who are likely to be close kin and potential reproductive helpers.

In a similar study, Thornhill and Gangstad [47] measured bilateral physical traits in males and females and then asked the volunteers to wear the same T-shirt for two consecutive nights. Opposite-sex participants then rated the shirts for ‘ pleasantness ’ , ‘ sexiness ’ and ‘ intensity ’ ; donor ’ s facial attractiveness was also assessed by different opposite-sex volunteers. Non-pill users in the fertile phase of their menstrual cycle gave the T-shirts worn by symmetrical males higher ratings; this was not seen in females using the contraceptive pill, or in females at unfertile phases of their cycle. Female symmetry had no influence on male ratings. The authors proposed that the so-called ‘ scent of symmetry ’ is an honest indicator of male genetic quality.

In a real-life study of actual mate choices, Ober et al. [48] found evidence for HLA-dependent mate prefer- ences in a population of Hutterites (a small, genetically isolated religious sect). They found that couples were less likely to share MHC haplotypes than chance, and in couples that had a similar MHC they demonstrated unusually long inter-birth intervals (unconscious avoid- ance of inbreeding?). Milinski and Wedekind [49] HLA-typed males and females and then asked them to smell 36 scents commonly used in perfume/aftershave. They rated each scent on whether they liked it or not, and whether they would use it on themselves. The authors reported a significant correlation between HLA and scent scoring for themselves but not for others, showing the people unconsciously select perfumes to enhance their own body odours that reveal their genetic make-up

Die These scheint also durchaus bestätigt zu werden.

Hier noch ein paar weitere Artikel zu dem Thema:

Aus der Wikipedia zum Thema Körpergeruch:

Jeder Mensch besitzt einen genetisch festgelegten, individuell einzigartigen Körpergeruch, der nur bei eineiigen Zwillingen identisch ist. Für den körpereigenen Basisgeruch sind vor allem zerfallende Proteine verantwortlich, der so genannte MHC-Komplex, der genetisch festgelegt und bei jedem Menschen unterschiedlich ist. Aus diesem Grund gibt es Überlegungen, Körpergeruchsproben als Erkennungsmerkmal in der Kriminalistik einzuführen als Ergänzung zum Fingerabdruck.[1] Je näher die genetische Verwandtschaft, desto ähnlicher ist der Körpergeruch. Wissenschaftler sprechen auch von einem Familiengeruch. Schon Neugeborene erkennen ihre Mutter an den Duftstoffen, die von Drüsen an den Brustwarzen abgegeben werden und können sie so von anderen Personen unterscheiden. An Mäusen konnte demonstriert werden, dass MHC-bedingte Gerüche die Sexualpartnerwahl beeinflussen, das Risiko von Fehlgeburten minimieren und als natürliche Inzesthemmung wirken.[2]

Bei einer Untersuchung der Wissenschaftlerin Ingelore Ebberfeld gab knapp die Hälfte der Befragten an, vom Körpergeruch des Partners sexuell stimuliert zu werden. „Generell kann man sagen, dass Frauen eher von Düften oberhalb und Männer eher von Düften unterhalb der Gürtellinie angezogen werden.“ Sexuell stimulierend wirkende körpereigene Duftstoffe werden wissenschaftlich als Pheromone bezeichnet.

In Studien hat sich gezeigt, dass im Durchschnitt jedoch nur etwa 70 % der Frauen und gut 60 % der Männer Androstenon überhaupt bewusst riechen können. Diese Fähigkeit scheint auch nicht auf allen Kontinenten gleich ausgeprägt zu sein. Am häufigsten wahrgenommen wird der Duftstoff in den USA und in Großbritannien, in Kontinentaleuropa und in Afrika dagegen weitaus seltener.[3]

Und zur Pille und deren Auswirkungen:

Die Forscher hofften offensichtlich darauf, nach der ersten Sitzung festzustellen, dass sämtliche Frauen den Körpergeruch der ihnen genetisch nicht ähnelnden Männer attraktiver fanden. Dies hatte der Evolutionsbiologe Claus Wedekind bereits in den 90ern nachgewiesen – die Briten übernahmen im Wesentlichen seinen Versuchsaufbau. Nur machten die Frauen Herrn Roberts diesen Gefallen nicht: Sie bevorzugten weder die Düfte der ähnlichen, noch die der genetisch unähnlichen Herren. Auch in Sitzung zwei zeigte sich kein signifikanter Unterschied. „Zu unserer Überraschung“, schreiben die Forscher – und an dieser Stelle liest sich ihre Originalstudie leicht verzweifelt: „Unsere Ergebnisse legen nahe, dass es weder eine signifikante Vorliebe von nicht-verhütenden Frauen für MHC-Unterschiedlichkeit gibt, noch eine für MHC-Ähnlichkeit bei Frauen, die die Pille nehmen.“ Der Geruch der genetisch unterschiedlichen Männer erinnerte die Damen auch nicht an ihren Partner oder ihre Ex-Freunde – auch dies war in Wedekinds Studie der Fall gewesen. Der Statistik-Trick Die britischen Mediziner konnten also ihre Grundannahme nicht bestätigen, aber davon ließen sie sich nicht entmutigen. Schließlich wollten sie ja ermitteln, ob sich die Duftvorliebe durch die Pille verändert, und das wäre ja immer noch möglich. Doch – sie können einem fast leid tun – mit Blick auf die Gesamtmenge ihrer Daten fand sich auch hier kein signifikanter Effekt. Aber wozu gibt es Statistik? Genau: zum Tricksen! Die Wissenschaftler definierten kurzerhand einen Kerndatensatz, in den nur die Ergebnisse von Probanden einflossen, die weiß und gebürtige Briten waren, zudem schlossen sie nun T-Shirt-Proben aus, die die Schnüfflerinnen an Tabak oder Parfums erinnerten. Jetzt fand sich endlich der Effekt, dass die Frauen mit Beginn der Hormoneinnahme ihre Duftvorliebe veränderten und weniger stark den Geruch von genetisch unterschiedlichen Männern bevorzugten. In der Kontrollgruppe, deren Frauen bei beiden Sitzungen nicht hormonell verhüteten, nahm dagegen die Vorliebe für den Duft der Männer, die sich stark von ihnen unterscheiden, leicht zu.