Ok, fine, that's most obvious headline you'll read all day. But Katharine Gammon at Wired has crunched the numbers to actually prove it.
We culled the stats for every centerfold from December 1953 (Marilyn Monroe) to January 2009 (Dasha Astafieva), then calculated each woman's body-mass index.
A clear trend emerged: While real American women have steadily eaten their way up the BMI slope - just like American men - Playmates have gone from a sylphlike 19.4 to an anime-ideal 17.6.
In fact, the average BMI for an American woman has gone up at a much faster rate than the BMI of a Playmate has gone down (luckily, since it would have begun to approach anorexic-levels otherwise). But it does create an increasingly disparate gap between the women Hugh Hefner sees fit for his readers to wank to and the women they're (somewhat) likely to actually get to have sex with in real life.
And that's not even talking about the fake ta-tas.
On the touchy subject of implants, Playboy's policy seems to be don't ask, don't tell. We plotted each model's bust size (chest circumference at the fullest points) and cup size (breast volume) for all years that data were available (early '90s to now). While busts have shrunk faster than your 401(k), cup size has remained a buxom C or D. We don't think evolution can explain this phenomenon.
For those not catching the difference, that means even as the women have gotten skinnier and their chests thinner, their individual breasts have not, which isn't exactly how nature works.
The takeaway? The models in Playboy are as increasingly out of touch with the reality of American women as Hugh Hefner's harem is with the reality of American relationships.