Ever wondered why your child has such adorably big eyes and cute squishy cheeks? Well, according to new research, this is to encourage adults to look after them. Yes, you read that right!
Researchers in Oxford University looked into the way a child’s cuteness makes the brain work, and found that cuteness is actually part of evolution to ensure kids’ survival. But it’s not all about looks with Professor Morten Kringelbach, who led the review, explaining how smells and sounds are also there to encourage care-giving.
“This is the first evidence of its kind to show that cuteness helps infants to survive by eliciting care-giving, which cannot be reduced to simple, instinctual behaviours,” explained Professor Kringelbach.
“Instead, care-giving involves a complex choreography of slow, careful, deliberate, and long-lasting prosocial behaviours, which ignite fundamental brain pleasure systems that are also engaged when eating food or listening to music, and always involve pleasant experiences."
So that’s how they do it!