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Male brains defined, sort of

Here is a summary of some known and observed differences between men’s and women’s brains:

Bigger, not better

On average, men’s brains are about 10 percent larger than their female counterparts. Why? Most scientists believe that because the male body is generally larger, their brains have to be bigger to compensate for the extra mass. Yet during the aging process, men’s brains also tend to shrink faster than women’s.

He said, she said

Depending on whose research you’re quoting, men say anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 fewer words a day than women do. This so-called word gap is often associated with smaller frontal and temporal lobes in men, the brain’s center for language.

Cars vs. smiles

A Cambridge University study in 1-year-olds found that boys preferred watching films of cars (i.e., mechanical systems) and girls preferred films of people’s faces. Boys also tended to make less eye contact than girls, indicating less interest in social connections.

The testosterone test

According to a Harvard study, men’s testosterone levels drop when they’re holding a baby. Even cradling a doll can decrease the amount of the hormone linked with virility.

Aging

According to Stewart, anatomical differences in men’s and women’s brains account for increased physical and mental problems in each gender. Men, who tend to take more risks, are therefore more vulnerable to car accidents, illnesses as a result of smoking, and cardiovascular diseases. Women, who tend to have lower serotonin levels in their brains, are more susceptible to related conditions such as migraines, fibromyalgia and depression.

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