People who help others are more desirable for the opposite gender, have more sexual partners and more frequent sex, a new study has found.
The study conducted by the researchers from the University of Guelph and Nipissing University in North Bay Ontario says if you want to get some you should just be nice.
‘People who are selfless appear more desirable to the opposite sex. They tend to have frequent sex and more sexual partners.’
The researchers interviewed about 800 people regarding their relationships and propensity for helping others, including giving to charity, donating blood, helping strangers cross the street, donating winnings and helping classmates, among other things. They found the more altruistic someone was the more sex they had even after controlling for factors like age and personality.
"This research is the first to show that altruism may translate into real mating success in Western populations, that altruists have more mates than non-altruists," Pat Barclay, a professor at the University of Guelph said.
The study, called Altruism predicts mating success in humans
was published in the British Journal of Psychology
. It was led by Professor Steven Arnocky from Nipissing University in North Bay Ontario who partnered with researchers from the University of Guelph.
Altruism evolved in our species, in part, because it serves as a signal of other underlying desirable qualities, which helps individuals reproduce. However it is more effective for men than women. "It's a more effective signal for men than for women," says Barclay.
The findings support previous studies on food sharing by hunters, which found that men who hunt and share meat enjoy greater reproductive success.
Earlier research by Barclay has also found that all else equal both men and women are more attracted to people who are altruistic.
The researchers suggest expanding the study to include a wider array of variables such as relationship length and partner quality. Also, given the importance we place on attractiveness, resources and intelligence, it would be worthwhile to explore how individuals trade-off altruism against other desirable qualities, Arnocky said.