Study Shows the Female Brain May Work More Efficiently

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While many men joke about having larger brains than women, new research suggests that the smaller size of the female brain may work more efficiently than males’.

Because the female brain is smaller, it works more efficiently by using less energy and fewer brain cells to do the same tasks with even better results.

Though men have more bundles of neurons, which are essential for reasoning, women have more connections between theirs, meaning they are able to think quicker despite having less grey matter.

The research was conducted by University of California neuroscientists and aimed to discover why men and women had differently sized brains but equal intelligence.

They focused their attention on the hippocampus, an area of the brain associated with memory and emotions.

Researchers found that men with a larger hippocampus and more neurons had higher intelligence.

But they found that the size of a woman’s hippocampus did not correlate to intelligence.

The tests were carried out on 59 women and 45 men ages 18 to 27.

Scientists discovered women were better at inductive reasoning and tracking a changing situation, while men were better at spatial reasoning.

The most notable finding, however, was that women’s brains were more efficient.

The paper, which was published in scientific journal Intelligence, concluded: “At this structural level, females might show greater efficiency requiring less neural material for achieving behavioral results on a par with males.”

Trevor Robbins, Cambridge University professor, said the research was enlightening but required deeper examination.

“The research suggests that, in women, the smaller the hippocampus, the better it works. The size of a structure doesn’t necessarily bear any relation to how well it performs,” Robbins said. “The smaller size could represent more intense packing of nerve cells or more active signalling between them, meaning they are operating more efficiently.”