The luck of the Irish - redheads feel less pain than most

Red heads feel less pain

Studies have shown that redheads truly are in a league of their own. The so-called ‘ginger’ population inherit certain traits that distinguish them from their other-colored hair counterparts.

The Daily Mail
reports on the findings about redheads and their reactions to pain and other sensations. Studies found that redheads were less susceptible to skin pain and can better handle hot and spicy foods. However, the studies also found that that redheads are more aware of toothaches and cold sensations.

“Our tests showed that redheads are less sensitive to this particular type of pain,” said Professor Lars Arendt-Nielsen, one of the researchers conducting the study. “They react less to pressure close to the injected area, or to a pinprick. They seem to be a bit better protected, and that is a really interesting finding.”

These findings, which are apparently unique among redheads, have led researchers to believe that there might in fact be a “redhead gene.”

'It seems that [the gene] MCR1 is involved in central functions in the brain, and we know that subgroups like MC2R, MC3R and MC4R, which are also linked to redheads, have considerable involvement in brain functions,” said Professor Lars Arendt-Nielsen.

“This could be the key to explaining why redheads are a little different to other people.”

Only approximately 2 percent of the world’s population is a redhead, and in the northern hemisphere of the world, that figure jumps to 6 percent.

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