Size Does Matter: Adolescent Build and Male Reproductive Success in the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study.

CM Schooling, Chao Jiang, Wei Zhang, T Lam, Kar Cheng, GM Leung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE: Women usually report attributes of masculinity as attractive. These are attributes are metabolically expensive. We examined the trade off of a key attribute of masculinity, muscularity, proxied by recalled adolescence build, with lifetime reproductive success in the developing country setting of Southern China. METHODS: We used poisson multivariable regression in 19,168 older (>/=50 years) Chinese from the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study (phases 2 and 3) to examine the sex-stratified, adjusted associations of recalled adolescent relative weight (light (n = 6730), average (n = 9344), and heavy (n = 3094)) with number of offspring. RESULTS: Among men, recalled heavy adolescent weight compared with light was associated with an incident rate ratio for offspring of 1.08 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.04-1.13) adjusted for age. This estimate was unchanged by adjustment for life course socio-economic position. There was no such association in women. CONCLUSIONS: Male physical attractiveness, possibly representing levels of testosterone, was rewarded by lifetime reproductive success, despite potential costs. Socio-economic development may facilitate an inevitable move toward environmentally driven higher levels of testosterone with corresponding public health implications for any conditions or societal attributes driven by testosterone. Further investigation is warranted.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnnals of Epidemiology
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jul 2010


Dive into the research topics of 'Size Does Matter: Adolescent Build and Male Reproductive Success in the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this