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People continue to evolve, and in the future, this may lead to significant changes

British evolutionary biologist Nicholas Longrich from the University of Bath, Somerset, believes that humans as a species continue to evolve.

However, the selection factors that dominated in the past, such as diseases, predator attacks, and interpersonal violence, no longer play a significant role nowadays.

Instead, traits like physical attractiveness, especially tall stature and a fit body, may become paramount.

“We have largely eliminated predators as a selection factor. Violence is also sharply decreasing as a selective factor. It still happens, but fewer people die from wars or murders than ever in human history.

Diseases are mostly eliminated, but not entirely: coronavirus is not the flu, but it is also not the Black Death. Occasionally, someone is eaten by a shark, but most natural causes of death have now been eliminated.

In hunter-gatherer times, a woman, for example, had a choice between two men, and one of them was quite handsome but not very smart, and he got killed – he took a spear to the chest or was eaten by a lion.

After that, the woman would go to the remaining guy because he was still alive, he might be a bit ugly, but ugliness is better than death.”

But in the future, physical attractiveness may become a very important factor because most men survive, and the unattractive ones will have fewer chances to find a partner and leave numerous offspring.

Women under normal conditions usually prefer tall men with symmetrical and attractive faces, and with good hair. So if beautiful appearance becomes the main factor of sexual selection in the future, humanity will, on average, become more attractive.

Also, more and more women prefer to have children much later than a century ago. And in such conditions, women who experience menopause later will be at an advantage.

That is, if they start having children after the age of 30, they have a better chance of leaving more offspring than those women who have children after 30 and experience menopause by the age of 40-45.

“Women who experience menopause five years later significantly outperform women who experience menopause five years earlier. I think humans could evolve towards delayed menopause, slower aging, and increased lifespan,” Longrich speculates.

Aggressive men will become extinct in favor of passive-aggressive or just passive men. The fact is that nowadays, physical aggression often lands men in prison during their teenage years. And when these men are in prison, they have far fewer chances to start families.

Modern men are much more likely not to fight with their neighbors and colleagues but to express aggression on social media or behind the scenes, plotting and scheming against their offenders.

Today’s mental health crisis (constant stress, rising suicide rates, depression, mental illnesses, etc.) is caused by people who might have been well adapted in a hunter-gatherer society but struggle to cope with the rapidly changing modern world.

Therefore, in the future, people may exhibit less empathy, as those who showed more empathy did not cope with difficulties, died prematurely, and did not leave offspring.

“Characteristics that strongly correlate with anxiety and depression are often high levels of empathy, sensitivity, and intelligence.”

So, people may also become significantly less intelligent. This may already be happening today.

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