HEALTH News

Why male strippers feel good about being sex objects but women who strip don't

Men who strip for a living are motivated by feelings of self-worth, even when financial benefits tail off, study suggests

PUBLISHED : Monday, 20 July, 2015, 6:06am
UPDATED : Monday, 20 July, 2015, 6:06am

Male strippers stay in work to boost their self-esteem

A positive feeling of self-worth, rather than money, is what keeps male strippers committed to their job, a new study from the University of Colorado Denver shows. Published this month in the scientific journal Deviant Behaviour, researcher Maren Scull spent two years interviewing and observing male strippers who dance for women in an American strip club. Unlike many female strippers who report money motivates them to remain in the job, men (who earn substantially less than female dancers in the same club) do it for self-esteem. "Initially women who dance for men may experience a boost in self-esteem, but after time they suffer from a diminished self-concept," says Scull, an instructor of sociology. "My research finds men who dance for women generally experience positive feelings of self-worth. So much so, those men will continue to strip even when it is no longer financially lucrative." She suggests this is because men and women ascribe different meanings to the sexual objectification they experience. While females are more inclined to define it as negative, males feel positive about being desirable.

Foraged wild mushrooms could be your last meal, experts warn

They may look similar to edible mushrooms, but be careful, eating toxic wild mushrooms can result in liver failure and even death. A new case published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal illustrates the severity of the mistake: a 52-year-old immigrant woman of Asian descent had foraged for wild mushrooms in a park in Ontario with her husband, who had foraging experience in his native land. The woman presented with severe abdominal pain and gastrointestinal distress, and eventually required a liver transplant. She had eaten the toxic species Amanita bisporigera (pictured), a member of the genus responsible for the most deaths from mushroom poisoning. Within six to 24 hours after ingestion, people with toxic mushroom poisoning experience gastrointestinal symptoms including pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea, followed by a false "recovery" period in which the patient appears to improve. In the final phase, 48 hours after ingestion, the patient's liver begins to fail, leading to multi-organ failure and potentially death.

Vaginal douches may expose women to harmful chemicals

Women who use feminine care products called douches may increase their exposure to harmful chemicals called phthalates, according to a study led by George Washington University published last week in Environmental Health. Phthalates are associated with many health problems, including developmental and behavioural issues in children who have been exposed to them in the womb. One type of phthalate in particular, diethyl phthalate (DEP), is used in products to retain a fragrance. Phthalates can be absorbed through the thin skin in the vagina and, once in the body, they are excreted as metabolites. In the study of 739 women aged 20 to 49, women who reported douching in the past month had 52 per cent higher urinary concentrations of a DEP metabolite compared to women who never used these products. Women who reported using these products two or more times a month had 152 per cent higher urinary concentrations of the metabolite than non-users. The study looked at associations between phthalates and six different types of feminine hygiene products, including tampons, sanitary napkins, feminine sprays and wipes, but only found an association with vaginal douches.