A Moment of Science

Fingers and Fertility

Guess what? You’re hands may have a lot to do with your sex life.

No, we haven’t been spying on you. A recent study has shown, however, that such things as the length of your ring finger, and the symmetry of your hands could be an indication of how fertile you are.

The scientists who conducted this study measured the hands of both men and women who went to a fertility clinic. As it turns out, there seems to be a link between someone’s reproductive ability and how his or her hands are shaped. Men with symmetrical hands, or hands equal in shape and size, tended to have higher sperm counts, while men with asymmetrical hands tended to have fewer, more sluggish sperm.

What’s more, men with ring fingers considerably longer than their index fingers had more testosterone than those with short ring fingers. Women with longer ring fingers had more estrogen and other reproductive hormones.

Does this finger/fertility connection seem extremely bizarre? Maybe it’s not. Studies on mice have shown that both reproductive organs and digits can be affected by mutations to a single gene during fetal development. Human fetuses may experience this same genetic link as well. If so, finger length isn’t only a possible indication of someone’s fertility, it offers a window into human fetal development as well.

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