Having a Good Sense of Humor Really Is Attractive

You know how laughing can do so many wonderful things for your health. What you may not know, however, is a good sense of humor -- generating all that laughter -- may be a difference-maker when it comes to finding the right life partner, according to two scientific studies.

In one study, some 200 college students ranked the attractiveness of men and women based on pictures featuring captions ranging from the bland to hilarious. Men weren't influenced by the captions, but women obviously were. Photos of men accompanied with funnier captions were considered more attractive and better potential partners to women.

In the latter study, researchers asked more than 125 students about the kind of person of the opposite sex with whom they preferred to be in a relationship: A joker or someone who appreciated a partner's sense of humor. Generally, men preferred women, they believed, who appreciated their sense of humor, while women liked funny guys.

One theory from a noted psychologist connects a good sense of humor to healthy, active brain. And, you can do a lot to enhance and protect your brain health by exercising regularly, side-stepping the obesity epidemic and learning stress-relieving tools like meditation or the Emotional Freedom Technique.

Guys, if your sense of humor isn't what you'd like it to be, consider sharing some of these hilarious stories with your loved one, and watch the sparks fly.

Nature.com January 23, 2006

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