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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

 

Married couples happier when wives are thinner

Married couples happier when wives are thinner, study finds

7/18/11 11:12 a.m.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (ABC News Radio) - Marriages are more satisfying for both partners when wives are thinner than their husbands, according to a new study.

The four-year study of 169 newlywed couples found that husbands were more satisfied initially and wives were more satisfied over time when the fairer sex had a lower body mass index -- a common measure of body fat.  The study was published in the July issue of Social Psychological and Personality Science.

"There's a lot of pressure on women in our society to achieve an often unreachably small weight," said Andrea Meltzer, a doctoral candidate at the University of Tennessee and lead author of the study.  "The great take-home message from our study is that women of any size can be happy in their relationships with the right partner.  It's relative weight that matters, not absolute weight.  It's not that they have to be small."

Just how relative weight impacts marital bliss is unclear, but Meltzer has a theory.

"One idea is that attractiveness and weight are more important to men," she said.  "That might be why we see this emerging at the beginning of the marriage for husbands, and their dissatisfaction might be affecting wives' satisfaction over time."

The finding held up even when other marital stressors, such as depression and income level, were ruled out. But relative weight is not the only factor that affects marital satisfaction, Meltzer cautioned.

"Obviously a lot of things play into relationship satisfaction and this is just one of them," she said. "It's not a guarantee to be happy in a relationship."

Men and women tend to be happier in a relationship when the men are "more powerful in a benign way," according to Susan Heitler, a couple's therapist in Denver and author of PowerOfTwoMarriage.com.

"The good news is there are many dimensions that symbolize power for men," she said, adding that height, weight, earning capacity, intelligence, education level, personality, even a big smile are all empowering traits. "Those signs of bigness lead to a subconscious feeling within the woman of more security and, in turn, more marital satisfaction."


Comments:
is this true in all races like korean,etc.?
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