Can men and women evolve separately? © Getty

Can men and women evolve separately?

There are a few evolutionary differences between men and women.

Asked by: Lisa Milne (age 14), Oxford

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They have evolved separately, which is why the two sexes are physically different.

Evolution has favoured men who have lots of children, so their biological contribution to reproduction is just a few millilitres of cheaply produced sperm. Women, on the other hand, need to supply literally all the energy and nutrients required to build a baby from scratch and feed it, so they’ve evolved a uterus, placenta and milk-producing breasts.

However, there is a limit to how far the sexes can diverge. Men and women only differ by one chromosome – the Y chromosome – and all the physical and hormonal differences between the sexes ultimately have to fit into that one chromosome.

What's the difference between men and women? © Getty Images

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