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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Altruism’s Sex Appeal

Feb 02, 2009 02:41PM


Displays of altruism make a potential mate more appealing to the opposite sex, say British researchers. They noted that the altruism, typically defined as unselfish concern for the welfare of others, doesn’t have to be a grand act. Simple acts of selflessness, such as regularly donating blood or volunteering at a local healthcare facility, scored high, especially among women.

“Evolutionary theory predicts competition between individuals, and yet we see many examples in nature of individuals disadvantaging themselves to help others,” comments Tim Phillips, Ph.D., on behalf of the University of Nottingham UK 2008 research team. “In humans particularly, we see individuals prepared to put themselves at considerable risk to help individuals they do not know, for no obvious reward.”

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