Long legs are considered to add a note of sexiness to a person's look. And if you thought than only men have an obsession with this issue regarding women, you are wrong: women too assess how sexy a man is, based on this. A new research discovered that taller people are more physically attractive to the opposite sex, and legs that are 5 % longer than average are considered the sexiest in both genders.
"There are good evolutionary reasons for the preference. Long legs are a sign of health", lead researcher Boguslaw Pawlowski, of University of Wroclaw in Poland, told "The Guardian".
The study was made on 218 male and female subjects, put to rank the attractiveness of 7 men and 7 women from digitally altered images. All the people in the images had the same height, but their legs length was digitally processed to match the Polish medium value, or longer by 5 %, 10 % or 15 %. No matter the body shape and leg length, those with 5 % longer legs than average were considered the most attractive. The next level of attractiveness was the average leg length or 10 % longer.
However, legs 15 % longer than the average scored poorly.
"Extremely long legs in a woman could indicate poor child-bearing prospects", wrote the authors.
"Longer legs are one of many subtle cues that suggest good health, especially in women. Leg length is a good indicator of childhood nutrition in women because their legs stop growing once they reach puberty. So if a woman has long legs it suggests she grew up in a good environment and that has a positive effect on fertility. The effect in men is more subtle, because their legs continue to grow beyond puberty", said Prof Martin Tovee, of the Newcastle University.
The same research team had found that women regarded taller men as good for one night stands, but shorter men as better for committed relationships.
Many researches connected shorter legs to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and obesity-related diabetes, in both genders, while in men this was connected to increased cholesterol levels, the main cause of arterial disease and strokes. Recently, longer legs in women have been connected to a healthier liver at an older age.