As Adele explained to a confused crowd, her voice got “a lot lower” when she was pregnant, smh.com.au reports. After her pregnancy, she was left with a song her back-to-normal voice struggled to sing.
Now, a new study has provided the first scientific evidence to back Adele’s theory. Conducted by researchers from the University of Sussex and published in Evolution & Human Behaviour, the study found that pregnancy and childbirth can cause a – thankfully temporary – change in women’s voices.
After analysing more than 600 female voice recordings over a 10-year period (five years before and five years after they gave birth), researchers found that ‘vocal masculinising’ was common, and that a woman’s highest pitch dropped by an average of more than two musical notes. The effect lasted as long as a year after childbirth.
The study’s author speculates in The Conversation that changing hormone levels are responsible for the change, noting that they have also been linked to postmenopausal voice drops in women.