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Here’s The Science Behind Why Some People Are So Into Big Butts

It’s not actually about how much junk is in your trunk!

by Sean Levinson and Rhyma Castillo
Originally Published: 
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Ah, butts: as a society, it’s safe to say we’re obsessed, but why? The exact reasons may be difficult to determine, but turns out evolution makes some big points about your preferences. Yes, there are scientific reasons behind why some people are so attracted to big butts, and they just might leave you bumfounded.

With Megan Thee Stallion, Kim Kardashian, Lizzo, and Nicki Minaj breaking the internet, bodacious figures are having their best moment yet. Remember the dark ages, in the ‘90s and early to mid-2000s, when full figures were seen by the mainstream media as a bad thing? In this house, we celebrate bodies of all shapes and sizes.

Still, you don’t even need extra junk in the trunk to break necks while strolling down the street -- you just need an attractively curved spine, otherwise known as “vertebral wedging,” to accentuate your bottom and make it appear bigger. According to a 2016 study from researchers at the University of Texas in Austin, data showed that female silhouettes were perceived as more attractive when their spines exhibited a 45.5-degree curve. Why? The answer lies in evolutionary instincts about procreation: For people who can get pregnant, a 45.5-degree spinal curvature is the optimum angle for a healthy childbirth, as it can reduce hip pressure during pregnancy by as much as 800%, according to a 2008 study on lumbar evolution. Who would’ve thought that such a seemingly insignificant angle could result in so much pain relief?

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Furthermore, the study shows that pregnant people with 45.5-degree spinal curvatures can remain physically active much later into term. Because the body’s center of mass is shifted so dramatically during pregnancy, “ancestral [people] would have been subjected to a nearly 800% increase in hip torque during pregnancy,” per scientists at the University of Texas. So, in the good ol’ hunter-gatherer era of humanity, pregnant people could continue to contribute to finding food for their family units. Nowadays, a 45.5-degree spinal curve probably just means you won’t pull a back muscle while twerking in the club (it happens).

Thankfully, there are some easy ways to make sure your spine stays as healthy as possible, no matter your booty size. Multiple studies show that maintaining good posture — yes, even when you’re on your couch working from home — can reduce lower back pain, prevent muscle fatigue, decrease tension in your shoulders and neck, promote proper spinal alignment, and more, per Healthline. So whether you like your butts big, small, fat, or flat, just remember: in the end, size doesn’t matter. It’s all about that vertical wedging — so, I guess ultimately, the sexiest thing you can have is a healthy spine and lumbar region.

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