Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Why men's success with women all depends on their hands

I rather like this study -- seeing I exemplify what it says. My ring finger is about half an inch longer than my index finger and I have been married 4 times

Forget witty chat-up lines and splashing on the aftershave. It appears the secret of a man’s attractiveness to the opposite sex lies in his hands. Men whose ring fingers are longer than their index fingers are seen as better bets by women, a study found. By contrast those seen as wimpier sorts will have longer index fingers.

It is thought that exposure to high levels of testosterone in the womb has a long-lasting effect on finger-length – and on looks.

The study is the latest in a long line to link the shape of man’s hands with his path in life. British, French and Swiss researchers photographed 49 young men and measured the length of their ring and index fingers. They also recorded their voices and took swabs to capture general odour. They then showed a group of women the photos and asked them to rate the men’s looks.

Those whose ring fingers were longer than their index fingers were more likely to win the women’s approval. They were seen as good prospects for both a fling and a long-term relationship.

However, they scored no more highly than the other men in terms of having a sexy voice or ‘attractive’ body odour, the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society reports.

Stirling University researcher Craig Roberts said exposure to testosterone in the womb likely affects facial structure as well as finger length. Having a long ring finger confers a host of other benefits. For instance, scientists believe the longer a man’s ring finger is compared to his index finger, the richer he is likely to be.

They claim he is also likely to be a promiscuous, extroverted go-getter with strong muscles and has a greater likelihood of playing a musical instrument. Unfortunately such men also have a higher chance of ending up in prison, being murdered or going mad.

Previous research has shown women who have ‘masculine’ hands, with long ring fingers, are more likely to be lesbians than those who don’t and display higher levels of aggression – as well as enjoying greater professional success.

To calculate finger length accurately you must measure the distance from the midpoint of the lowest crease at the base of the finger on the palm side to the very end of the fleshy tip.


Calcium supplements are linked to higher heart attack risk in older women

More evidence that HRT is the best strategy for preventing osteoporosis

Older women taking calcium supplements to improve bone strength could be at higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, claim researchers. A new study adds to previous research suggesting extra calcium - with or without vitamin D - may do more harm than good.

Hundreds of thousands of women take supplements because they are recommended for preventing osteoporosis, or thinning bones.

But a research team led by Professor Ian Reid at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, says the practice should be reassessed as it may result in more heart attacks than fractures would be prevented.

They looked at data from Women's Health Initiative (WHI) study - a seven-year trial of more than 36,000 women which originally found no cardiovascular effect of taking combined calcium and vitamin D supplements.

But most women were already taking personal calcium supplements, which may have hidden any adverse effects from being allocated supplements as part of the trial. Prof Reid's study looked at data from 16,718 women who were not taking personal calcium supplements when the trial began.

It found those given combined calcium and vitamin D supplements had a 'modest' increased risk of cardiovascular events. This amounted to around 25 per cent higher risk of heart attack and 15 per cent extra risk of stroke, says a report in

But for women already taking personal calcium supplements at the start of the trial, adding calcium and vitamin D supplements made no difference to their risk.

The researchers believe abrupt changes in blood calcium levels after taking a supplement causes the adverse effect, rather than it being linked to the total amount of calcium consumed. High blood calcium levels are linked to hardening of the arteries.

The report says treating 1,000 people for five years would result in six extra heart attacks, but only three prevented fractures.

The team conducted a further analysis using data on 29,000 people which found consistent increases in the risk of heart attack and stroke with taking calcium supplements, with or without vitamin D.

'These data justify a reassessment of the use of calcium supplements in older people' said the report.

But the British Heart Foundation (BHF) charity said there is insufficient evidence to say calcium supplements definitely trigger heart problems.

Cathy Ross, senior cardiac nurse at the BHF, said 'The study showed there was a modest increase in heart attack or stroke risk but that’s not the same as saying calcium supplements with vitamin D cause heart attacks and strokes, only that there was an increased risk.

'It’s very important further studies are carried out to determine the effects of calcium supplements on heart health. We also need to know whether any increased risk outweighs the benefits these supplements have in treating the debilitating effects of conditions such as osteoporosis.

'There is still not enough evidence to confirm the association between calcium supplements and cardiovascular risk so patients prescribed the supplements shouldn’t stop taking them, but should discuss any concerns they have with their doctor.'


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