All throughout history, the perception of what the ideal male body should look like has always remained relatively the same. Think of all the ancient statues that were built by the people of earlier civilizations. The picture in your mind the sculptures of gods and heroes. What do they look like? These men were huge. They always had chiseled physiques. They had amazingly sculpted arms that look as if cannonballs had been implanted in them.

They are depicted with six-pack abs that look like rolls of bread arranged in two files. Broad shoulders. Heavy legs. And these are the images that come to mind whenever we are asked to imagine the ideal male body, right? We always think of a knight in shining armor; someone who has the physical strength and conditioning to fight battles and win wars.

But alas, there has been a recent change in society as far as what the ideal male body is supposed to look like. Recent trends have proposed that perhaps the whole desire for men who are athletic, strong, and muscular might be going out of style. It turns out that the sporty jock is being replaced by the adorable and nerdy chunk in the eyes of women. There are studies that concur that women are indeed picking men who have dad bods over guys who have 6-pack abs.

And okay, you might think that this idea is just being perpetuated by men who are too lazy to hit the gym every day; or guys who are too undisciplined to actually watch what they eat and drink. But you would be wrong to think so. There is actually some substantial science behind this theory. In the earlier parts of the year, Planet Fitness actually went ahead and conducted an online study that spanned the entire USA.

The online study had more than 2000 male and female participants and they were mostly tasked with determining what would be considered the most attractive body type. The results of the study were surprising, to say the least. The study showed that around 7 out of 10 women actually preferred to be with men who were carrying up to as much as 20 pounds of extra mass on their bodies – and we’re not talking about lean body mass either.

An earlier article that was published by the Washington Post back in 2015 said that around 37% of American men between the ages of 20 and 54 happen to match this physical description. So, that means that there is no shortage of men in the country who can actually satisfy the visual cravings of most women in the United States.

However, recent trends have suggested that the desire for muscular men might be going out of fashion and that the sporty hunk may be replaced by the dorky chunk when it comes to women picking an ideal life partner.

The survey also revealed that almost 80% of women believed that men who had dad bods were more confident and that made them more attractive. The studies also showed that more than 83% of women were proud to be married to men who had more shapely figures as opposed to completely sculpted ones. And it also turns out that the attraction is more than just visual.

Research proves that there may be a very biological reason as to why a lot of heterosexual women tend to be more attracted to guys who have plenty of bellies to go around. Richard Bribiescas, an anthropology expert and professor at Yale University, has concluded that chubby men might actually be healthier than the guys who are hitting the gym every day. And this is all caused by the decreasing testosterone levels of a man who gains weight. When there is less testosterone in the body, a man develops a stronger immune system and these types of men might have longer lifespans as a result.

Bribiescas says, “This change in body composition not only causes men to shop for more comfortable trousers but also facilitates increased survivorship and, hypothetically, a hormonal milieu that would more effectively promote and support paternal investment.”

So essentially, the chunkier man is likely to become a better dad. That’s why a lot of women who are looking to actually plant their roots and settle down will be drawn to men who have chunkier physiques because they care less about their partner’s athleticism and more about a man’s ability to be a husband and dad.

However, if you are a guy who is reading this, you shouldn’t take it as an excuse t go and eat all the ice cream and pizza in sight. You don’t want to have a dad bod to the point that you’re practically obese. That’s very unhealthy and it might have severe effects on your physical health as well as your self-esteem. You still want to be active and fit to a certain extent. You just don’t have to be living at the gym. Remember that moderation is key.

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