Size-dependent reproductive success in Gambian men: does height or weight matter more?


Sear, R; (2006) Size-dependent reproductive success in Gambian men: does height or weight matter more? Social biology, 53 (3-4). pp. 172-188. ISSN 0037-766X

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Abstract

Size is an important component of life history analysis, as it is both a determinant and an outcome of life history decisions. Here, we present an investigation of the relationships between two components of size (height and weight) and life history outcomes for men in a rural Gambian population. This population suffered seasonal food shortages and high disease loads, and lacked a ccess to medical care or contraception. We find that there is no relationship between height and mortality among adult men. Tall men also do not have more children than shorter men, though they do contract slightly more marriages than shorter men. Tall men, therefore, do not seem to have higher reproductive success in this Ga mbian population. Instead, weight (measured by BMI) appears to be a better predictor of life history outcomes, and ultimately reproductive success, in this population . Heavier men have lower mortality rates, contract more marriages and have higher fertility than thinner men.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health > Dept of Population Health (2012- ) > Dept of Population Studies (1974-2012)
Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health > Dept of Population Health (2012- )
Research Centre: Population Studies Group
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/20964

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