You may be excited to date someone who seems perfect on paper with the right job and attitude but find that your chemistry is lacking. People tend to blame themselves for not being able to uphold a good relationship, but research reveals that our genetics could play a vital role in choosing a life partner. Men with a gene variant connected to leadership and social dominance are generally thought to be more appealing, whereas women with a gene variant linked to sensitivity are thought to be more alluring. It is also said that humans tend to prefer partners who resemble their parents and those who have opposite immune systems so as to bring about healthy offspring.
Your Height Affects your Choice of Partner
Scientists have found that two genes that appear to be unrelated — those that govern your height and those that control who you are attracted to, are actually connected. Height is an essential biological measure that has been utilized as an indicator of quality genes throughout history. This explains why we choose mates who are about the same height as ourselves. On a biological level, we seek a partner who shares features that complement or strengthen our own. That’s why it’s unusual to see a woman of 5-foot-2 in a relationship with a man of 6-foot-4. Tall people prefer tall partners and short people prefer short partners.
The genes that determine how tall we are also influence our choice of mate by height, according to a study involving 13,000 heterosexual couples. According to researchers, this explains why we choose mates who are of roughly equivalent height to us. It’s all due to something called “assortative mating.” Of course, height isn’t the only reason you like someone, and it’s usually not one of the most relevant characteristics. It is, however, a component in getting to know someone better — and even a potential barrier to doing so. It could be used as a criterion for moving on to more sexual or romantic encounters.
A Match Made by Genetics
People choose relationship partners that have similar qualities such as age, race, religion, wealth, and family background. However, according to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, people also prefer to marry persons who have similar DNA. Researchers identified fewer changes in DNA between married persons than between two randomly selected individuals within the same race when they investigated the genetic material of 825 white American couples. In fact, they found that the tendency to marry someone with a similar genetic background is one-third as strong as the tendency to marry someone with a comparable educational background.
Opposites do Attract
However, opposites do sometimes attract. If you’ve lived a sheltered existence, for example, you might be drawn to folks who have had vastly different experiences than you. There could be a biological reason for opposites being attractive. When it comes to reproduction, a little variety is beneficial. The major histocompatibility complex (MHC), for example, is an immune system component that aids cells in recognizing foreign substances. When your MHC is vastly different from your mate’s, it reduces the risk of mating with a relative and enhances the genetic variability of any offspring you have, making them more likely to be healthier and have a stronger immune system.
Not sure if they are The One? Try Kissing!
People transmit roughly 80 million bacteria when they kiss, and still they continue to do so. Kissing not only causes oxytocin to be released, but the taste of another person also aids biological attraction. Kissing allows you to smell and taste a person and see whether you have different immune reactions, as we are more attracted to those who have distinct immune responses. Because the major histocompatibility complex is observable in body smell, kissing, or tasting someone allows you to judge how biochemically similar or dissimilar that person is to you.
Attraction Towards Physical Characteristics
In general, if someone appears to be healthy, that is, if they get enough sleep, exercise, and eat well, it will show on their appearance. Not solely in terms of appearance, but also in terms of behavior. People are drawn to signals of health because they want to reproduce, and those who show signs of health have a better chance of surviving, having more children, and passing along genes that promote good health. Average faces are typically thought to be the most appealing, probably because they represent a more diverse mix of genes. Many animals, including humans, appear to “learn” what a suitable mate looks like based on the physical attributes of their parents. If a goat mother cares for a sheep baby or a sheep mother cares for a goat baby, the offspring will grow up to try to mate with their foster mother’s species rather than their own. It has been observed that women prefer partners who have a face that resembles their fathers, whereas males prefer partners who have a face that resembles their mothers.