The female brain is more active than the male brain
Sep 19, 2023
Psychological and neurological differences between men and women They are one of the fields of study that are of most interest in the world of science applied to the study of human beings. Ultimately, the division between the sexes has a clear impact on many aspects of our lives, no matter what culture we belong to, all over the planet.
For example, research exploring differences in the cognitive performance of men and women aim to give us an approximation to the type of mental capacities and aptitudes psychological. Typically, this is done by differentiating between categories of cognitive skills and seeing which ones women excel at most and which ones men tend to do better at.
However, there are other indirect ways to know which aspects of our mental life are in which there is a division between the sexes. For example, you can see to what extent people's brains tend to be activated. And that is precisely what has been done through recent research, the results of which have been published in the scientific journalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease. The conclusion is that, in general, a woman's brain is about 10% more active than a man's.
- You may be interested in: ·Parts of the human brain (and functions)"
Women's brains are more active
This research promoted by scientists at the Amen Clinics in California was carried out using more than 20,000 images in which functional activation of patients' brains is recorded.
These "scans" of the brain are performed by measuring which areas of this set of organs receive the greatest amount of blood flow. It is based on the idea that the more blood reaches an area, the more "activated" it will be, since the irrigation reaches provide support to the energy needs of areas that need a greater amount of resources as they are very busy
Thus, based on the coloration and luminosity that each area of the brain received, the researchers had the opportunity to see how in women's brains were more often "enlightened" larger brain extensions than in men (at least in proportion).
From the data analysis, it was seen that the women's brain was larger both in a resting state (a 12% difference) and while performing a complex task (in this case, the difference was a 8%).
- Related article: "The 5 main technologies for the study of the brain"
Are women more intelligent?
It is very easy and intuitive to relate brain activation to the degree of intelligence. However, they are two different things.
What defines intelligence itself is the ability to improvise solutions in changing situations. That is, if we are good at adapting to rapidly changing contexts, we will be intelligent regardless of what happens in our brain: what matters is the practice of our actions applied to real environments, not neuroimages.
However, it is also true that our actions are not disconnected from what happens in our brain, far from it (without a brain, there would be no behavior). And furthermore, practically any variation in behavioral patterns results in differences in activation patterns. That is why the fact that women's brains tend to be somewhat more activated than men's is much more than a simple curiosity, and may have implications in the world of psychology and neurology.
For example, there is data that shows how intelligence is more linked to low brain activation than to excess of it. It makes sense, since more intelligent people exert less effort when executing complex mental operations. So to speak, they manage their neural resources better.
But that doesn't mean that women are less intelligent than men. Ultimately, IQ score records reveal that there are hardly any differences between the sexes, and that In any case, the average intelligence of women is somewhat higher than that of men, while the number of gifted people It is higher in men, and the same occurs with extremely low scores (in this sex there is greater dispersion of results).
- Related article: "Theories of human intelligence"
Are they really differences between the sexes?
The existence of these differences in the intensity of brain activation does not mean that in In any situation and context, the female brain always maintains this difference with respect to that of the male. man. Although there are several differences between men and women that are almost entirely due to genes, others are the result of culture, the way society shapes our nervous systems.
What happens is that, so far, it is not clear which part of the observable differences between men and women are due to genetics and which are due to culture. More research will be necessary to know if everything It is due to the different lifestyle between the sexes.. We often forget that, even across different cultures, the roles assigned to women and men can cause their nervous systems to adapt in different ways.