Mate preferences may operate in part to mitigate the threats posed by infectious disease. In this paper, we outline various ways in which preferring healthy mates can offer direct benefits in terms of pathogen avoidance and indirect benefits in terms of heritable immunity to offspring, as well as the costs that may constrain mate preferences for health. We then pay special attention to empirical work on mate preferences in humans given the depth and breadth of research on human mating. We review this literature and comment on the degree to which human mate preferences may reflect preferences for health. © 2011 The Royal Society.
|Journal||Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B. Biological Sciences|
|Publication status||Published - 2011|