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Bearcat99
08-21-2008, 10:13 PM
<sub>Taking birth control pill may sway partner choice

Updated Wed. Aug. 13 2008 8:54 AM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

Women who take oral contraceptives are attracted to a different type of romantic partner than they would be if they did not take the pill, new British research suggests.

Researchers at the University of Liverpool and the University of Newcastle found that women who take the birth control pill were more likely to be attracted to a partner who was genetically similar to themselves.

Traditionally, humans are attracted to partners who are genetically dissimilar as a means of maintaining genetic diversity.

The researchers asked 100 study subjects to indicate which of six male body odour samples they preferred both before and after starting to use the birth control pill.

Humans are attracted to the body odour of prospective partners. Genes in the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) help develop a person's distinct body odour by how they interact with skin bacteria.

The researchers found that women's body odour preferences changed after they began taking the pill to favour men with similar odours to their own.

Genetically similar partners have more trouble conceiving, a higher risk of miscarriage and extended time periods between pregnancies.

As well, a child who inherits a less diverse mix of genes has a higher risk of developing a weakened immune system.

As well, "not only could MHC-similarity in couples lead to fertility problems but it could ultimately lead to the breakdown of relationships when women stop using the contraceptive pill, as odour perception plays a significant role in maintaining attraction to partners," Craig Roberts, a lecturer in evolutionary psychology at the University of Liverpool and a lead study author, said in a statement.

The researchers could not say for sure how the pill may affect a woman's choice of partner. However, they did speculate that there could have been pre-existing behavioural differences between the study subjects who took the pill and those who did not, particularly among those who were in relationships and those who were not.

The findings are published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. </sub>

Bearcat99
08-21-2008, 10:13 PM
<sub>Taking birth control pill may sway partner choice

Updated Wed. Aug. 13 2008 8:54 AM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

Women who take oral contraceptives are attracted to a different type of romantic partner than they would be if they did not take the pill, new British research suggests.

Researchers at the University of Liverpool and the University of Newcastle found that women who take the birth control pill were more likely to be attracted to a partner who was genetically similar to themselves.

Traditionally, humans are attracted to partners who are genetically dissimilar as a means of maintaining genetic diversity.

The researchers asked 100 study subjects to indicate which of six male body odour samples they preferred both before and after starting to use the birth control pill.

Humans are attracted to the body odour of prospective partners. Genes in the Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) help develop a person's distinct body odour by how they interact with skin bacteria.

The researchers found that women's body odour preferences changed after they began taking the pill to favour men with similar odours to their own.

Genetically similar partners have more trouble conceiving, a higher risk of miscarriage and extended time periods between pregnancies.

As well, a child who inherits a less diverse mix of genes has a higher risk of developing a weakened immune system.

As well, "not only could MHC-similarity in couples lead to fertility problems but it could ultimately lead to the breakdown of relationships when women stop using the contraceptive pill, as odour perception plays a significant role in maintaining attraction to partners," Craig Roberts, a lecturer in evolutionary psychology at the University of Liverpool and a lead study author, said in a statement.

The researchers could not say for sure how the pill may affect a woman's choice of partner. However, they did speculate that there could have been pre-existing behavioural differences between the study subjects who took the pill and those who did not, particularly among those who were in relationships and those who were not.

The findings are published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. </sub>

VW-IceFire
08-21-2008, 10:33 PM
Interesting!

That makes things complicated...I know smell is a bigger factor than most people give credit but that really makes things a bit messy.

tagTaken2
08-22-2008, 06:36 AM
It sounds huge... but I've also seen some pretty negative responses from biologists.

Funny, though.

From someone whose gf is not on the pill http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Bearcat99
08-22-2008, 06:59 AM
The interesting thing is.. I wonder how much of a factor this plays into the known issues that many women are having with infertility..

Airmail109
08-22-2008, 08:00 PM
LOL this is going to make for great conspiracy stories. Anyway I thought women liked men who were like their dads? Or does this just exagerate that. This kind of explains why it's hard for me not to pull in Spain though.

kleaneasy
08-23-2008, 02:05 PM
This doesn't surprise me in the slightest to be honest. The pill alters your hormone levels and this impacts heavily on how the body works in pretty much every way including your sensitivity to smell in much the same way that a women's sense of smell is heightened during her monthly and menopause.

Hormone changes can also impact on how the women smells as well which would alter the men attracted to her, for example its well known that women who have used the same perfume their entire lives are suddenly unable to wear that perfume during menopause because the body alters the smell in an unpleasant way.

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Aimail101:
Anyway I thought women liked men who were like their dads? Or does this just exagerate that. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I would also be interested to know what if any impact this would have on this, I think most women agree they are attracted to men similar to their dads but I've never fully understood how much of this is supposed to be from learned behaviour and how much from a genetic predisposed attraction, for example do women who've never had any involvement with their natural fathers find themselves attracted to men like their natural father or surrogate dads?