Beauty is linked to a healthy immune system

Does a person’s attractiveness depend on the health of their immune system? Or, conversely, does a poor immune system make a face less beautiful? The question may seem incongruous, vaguely disturbing, and yet a team of researchers conducted a study on the relationship between immune function and perceived facial attractiveness. This is enough to reshuffle the cards of the canons of beauty.

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Stop everything! If you thought beauty was a story of subjectivity, diktats, or injunctions, you were wrong. It would actually be directly linked to the good health – or not – of your immune system, as revealed by a team of American researchers. Incredible, but (potentially) true!

Who said it’s not all about physical ? Not this team of scientists from the Texas Christian Universityin the United States, which is interested in the potential link between physical attraction and aptitude of the immune system fight all kinds of infections. The idea seems totally crazy, but researchers believe that we could be attracted to a certain form of beauty because we are simply biologically programmed to seek out a healthy partner. Phenomenon that they tried to demonstrate through a study published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

The study carries out of 159 participants, men and women, students at the Texas Christian University or members of the neighboring community, who were photographed without makeup and with neutral facial expressions, and who had blood tests carried out. For the second phase of the survey, scientists asked 492 people participating in an online survey to rate their physical attractiveness based on each snapshot.

You have beautiful cells, you know…

The result is surprising, since the women and men judged to be the most attractive were also those who had the highest rates of phagocytosis, a process that plays a central role in the destruction of certain bacteria responsible for diseases. In other words, the better looking you are, the more likely you are to have a strong immune system — or the opposite.

However, researchers have observed gender disparities. Men judged to be the most attractive were more likely to have natural “good cells” intended to eliminate viral infections of the organism. The beauty of the women was associated with a slower growth in their plasma of a bacterium responsible for food poisoning and localized infections.

There would therefore be a link between the interest you have in a person’s features and the proper functioning of his immune system; the whole being played on the attraction which you finally bring to the good health potential of a future life partner. Still, this is the first study of its kind, and these results still deserve to be confirmed in the future, especially since it would require affirming that beauty is… objective beyond all cultural and societal considerations, but also unrelated to the personality of the main stakeholders.

In conclusion of their research, the scientists estimate that the progress of modern medicine could redistribute the cards in matter physical preferences. ” Thanks to modern medicine, infections aren’t as deadly as they used to be, so people might be lowering their standards, and starting to give less attractive people a chance. said the study’s lead author.

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