Sorry, Ladies, You CAN'T Tell a Man's Biggest Secret from His Shoe Size; the Scientific Truth Behind Ten Myths about Sex

Daily Mail (London), June 24, 2014 | Go to article overview

Sorry, Ladies, You CAN'T Tell a Man's Biggest Secret from His Shoe Size; the Scientific Truth Behind Ten Myths about Sex


Byline: Dr AARON CARROLL and RACHEL VREEMAN

MOST of us have learned all sorts of things about sex -- from talking to friends, sex education at school, the TV or the internet. Some things you might even have figured out from experience.

But while you may have plenty of information, some of it is plain wrong.

In fact, people believe all kinds of things about sex that are simply not true.

As paediatricians, part of our job is to teach adolescents about sex.

As researchers, our job is to help figure out the science about what works, and what doesn't, to keep people healthy.

To shine some light on the most popular and prevalent sex myths, we've scoured the world's medical literature, looking for scientific studies to prove whether common thinking is true or false.

You'd be amazed at how often real research has been done on these topics!

And, more often than not, there is good scientific evidence to tell us clearly whether a theory is actually true.

Here, we debunk some long -held beliefs about sex ...

BIG FEET, BIG... AHEM!

MANY people think you can size up what a man's penis is like by looking at his feet, hands, or nose.

Interestingly enough, the connection between big feet and big penises has some roots in science.

A gene called the Hox gene plays a role in the development of the toes and fingers, as well as the penis and the clitoris. If the same gene controls the growth of toes, fingers, and pe nises, then might it make all of them grow big (or not)? In fact, there's no good evidence that men with big feet actually have bigger penises.

A study of 63 men in Canada did find a weak relationship between the length of the penis and shoe size, as well as a correlation between penis length and height.

However, it didn't actually measure the men's feet, and relied on their reported shoe size.

In contrast, a slightly larger study that looked at penile length and shoe size for 104 men found no correlation between the two. These are pretty mixed results; one study says the two are weakly connected, the other says that they are not. And they are both small studies.

Our conclusion? You can look at a man's feet all you want, but it's only going to give you an idea about his taste in shoes.

MEN PEAK AT 18, WOMEN AT 28

WE'VE both heard this myth so many times we assumed it must be true. But is there any scientific basis for this? Certainly men's testosterone level peaks at around age 18, while women's oestrogen levels peak in their mid -20s.

Since low hormone levels have been associated with lower sexual drive, some have asserted the opposite must be true: when your levels are at their highest, your drive must be at its peak.

But what does 'peak' mean? If we believe frequency of sex is what matters most, single men are most likely to have sex four or more times a week in their 30s, and for men with partners, this is most likely in their 40s.

For single women and women in relationships, such frequent sex is most likely in their late 20s.

So if this is the standard we use, we would conclude that men are peaking after women.

Common sense tells us sexual desire fluctuates constantly, and is related to far more factors than simply age.

SEX HELPS YOU LOSE WEIGHT

SOUNDS plausible, doesn't it? But unless you are having sex for much longer and with much more vigour than the average person, sex is probably not going to get you anywhere near the recommended amount of exercise to lose weight.

Sex is considered to be only a mild to moderate intensity activity, and the average sexual encounter lasts only five minutes. Estimates of how many calories are used up range from 25 to 125 -- not a great deal.

MEN THINK ABOUT SEX EVERY 7 SECS

YOU probably believe men think about sex every seven seconds. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Sorry, Ladies, You CAN'T Tell a Man's Biggest Secret from His Shoe Size; the Scientific Truth Behind Ten Myths about Sex
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.