It may be predicted, therefore that, if attractiveness is a mechanism for identifying healthy, fertile mates, healthy levels of body fat (21–33% for women and 8–21% for men; ) will be perceived as healthiest and most attractive.
Dr Stephen theorises that what people really like is low body fat, and don't particularly care about a person's height or width. "Our participants optimised a healthy-looking body composition for women at around 19 per cent fat, and a most attractive-looking body type of just 16 percent fat," says Dr Stephen.
A new study from Macquarie University being published in PLOS ONE has found that both genders consider an unhealthily low body fat content for women as attractive, however for men, a healthy body type with a normal body fat content, is considered more attractive.
The most attractive men had 12 percent body fat. or overweight — the immune system was negatively impacted. From their data, the researchers made a composite image of the bottom eight men with the cruddiest immune systems on the left, and the eight men with the best on the right.
The Most Attractive Degree of Leanness
When we asked women what body-fat percentage they found most attractive, 58% chose the body with a flat stomach, and 39% chose the body with abs. The average man is overweight, but only 3% of women chose that body-fat percentage.
They found that women were most attracted to muscles that are harder to develop, primarily the abs and biceps. Interestingly, the muscles women found most attractive were, in this order: glutes, biceps, abs, pecs, shoulders, obliques, triceps, and quads.
As mentioned before in Perett's book, In Your Face: The New Science of Human Attraction, women show a stronger attraction toward men with a figure consistent with the ideal hunting physique: strong shoulders, narrow waists, and broad chests and shoulders.
According to Marc Perry, fitness expert and CEO of Built Lean, female models in shape for a shoot have a body fat percentage between 15 and 17 percent. Male models generally measure between 6 and 7 percent body fat.
A study published in the journal Nature Communications found that men with high levels of the hormone testosterone and certain stress hormones also have stronger immune systems and tend to have more masculine facial features such as a strong jawline — a sexy physical trait.
Faces that we deem attractive tend to be symmetrical, they find. Attractive faces also are average. In a symmetrical face, the left and right sides look like each other. They're not perfect mirror images.
When it came to size, the men were asked which dress size they preferred in women, here the results were unanimous. The majority of the men (nearly 86% of them) preferred a woman with a dress size 14 to 16.
Based on the research, in order to maximize testosterone levels you should be getting at least 40% of your calories from fat (and maybe even more). The study also found that saturated and monounsaturated fat, specifically, were positively correlated with testosterone levels, while polyunsaturated fat was not.
What % Body Fat Percentage is Needed to Reveal Your Abs? Having a six pack requires a leaner physique - typically within the athletic range. The body fat percentage needed to see your pack of abdominal muscles falls somewhere around 14 to 20% for women and 6 to 13% for men.
Victoria's Secret models, known as "angels", are required to adhere to strict requirements in terms of their body measurements. According to Poppy, to be a Victoria's Secret angel your body fat percentage has to be lower than 18%.
Require Victoria's Secret models to have a BMI of 18.5 or higher.
Most variations of the plan involve restricting refined carbs, processed foods, and added sugars while eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats, along with a good source of protein with each meal. Some versions also require limiting your daily calorie intake, often to as few as 1,300 calories per day.
Approachability is attractive
Of course, men blessed with symmetrical features, chiseled jaws and great hair will always score higher in the attractiveness stakes, but several studies have shown that women tend to be more attracted to approachable, average looks when looking for a long-term partner.
In a survey, where women are showed pictures of men with veiny arms and normal arms, most of the women found pictures that had men with veiny arms attractive.
In fact, seven out of ten women think that the "dad bod" is attractive, according to a recent Planet Fitness study. Not only did female respondents say that a dad bod is sexy, they also said it's an indicator of confidence and happiness — two traits that are definitely appealing.
Women view a man who makes them laugh as more intelligent, better able to provide, and more physically attractive. Also, women may perceive their potential partner's ability (or inability) to make them laugh to indicate how happy the relationship will be in the long term.
Cutting, also sometimes called shredding is essentially just dieting. We're now talking about intentional weight loss not weight gain. The most optimal time to cut is the opposite of bulking so ideally you'd begin when body fat is over 18% and 28% for men and women, respectively.
15% body fat: This percentage of body fat usually fits into the “lean and fit” category. Outlines of muscle can be seen, but there is not really a clear separation between them. Muscles and veins can slightly be seen, but are covered by a thin layer of fat. However, the overall body shape is present and can be noticed.