It's often said women are better than men at multi-tasking, but scientists now claim the opposite is true - at least at a certain time of the month.

Researchers from Sweden studied the memories and spatial abilities of 160 men and women aged between 19 and 40.

The volunteers had to keep track of three digital counters displaying different times at varying speeds. At the same time they watched a list of common names appear across a screen. They had to press a button when a name was repeated.

Results from the experiment by Stockholm University showed that while women can normally outstrip men at multi-tasking, but results were dependant on the woman's menstrual cycle.


Professor Timo Mantyla said: "Women's spatial skills vary across the cycle with high capacity around menstruation and much lower around ovulation, when oestrogen levels are high.

"The results showed a clear difference in multi-tasking between men and women."

The paper will be published in the latest edition of the journal Psychological Science.