Have you ever wondered why noses look so different? Well a new study published in the journal PLOS Genetics claims it could have something to do with how we evolved to survive in certain climates. This genetic drift, which has played a role in human evolution may have allowed us to adapt to certain climates.
1. THE GENETIC DRIFT THAT SAVED US
The genetic drift is a mechanism of evolution through which certain genes will “drift” upward or downward randomly to allow us to adapt to the varying climate of Earth’s atmosphere through the ages.
2. IF YOU HAVE A WIDER NOSE
According to researchers, people with wider noses are commonly found in regions where the climate is humid and warm. This is probably because it allows for better air intake and it was invaluable back in the prehistoric age when we were hunters.
3. IF YOU HAVE A NARROWER NOSE
In the study, it was discovered that the longer and narrower the nose is, the longer it takes for the air to travel before it gets into our body, thereby increasing temperature regulation. It also helps to filter the air that we breathe in.
4. JUST FOLLOW YOUR NOSE
Researchers used 3D facial imaging to measure the noses of over 2,600 participants from Northern Europe, South Asia, East Asia, and West Africa. Measuring the nostril width, distance between nostrils, nose height, nose-ridge length, nose protrusion and the nostril area was the first step.
5. THE MECHANISM OF YOUR NOSE SHAPE
Aside from estimating each participant’s ancestry through genetic testing, researchers found that the nostril width and the width of the nose at its base was linked to climate. So just as people with wide nostrils lived in hot climates, people with narrow nostrils lived in cold and dry climates.
6. WHY DOES YOUR NOSE SHAPE MATTER
Your nose isn’t just for breathing and smelling. It also warms and moistens the air before it reaches your lung because the temperature and humidity are important for your respiratory tract. This is why the shape, width, and length are so vital.
7. YOUR TEMPERATURE REGULATING NOSE
Researchers found that by the time the air hits the back of your throw, 90 percent of it is already regulated to its ideal temperature and moisture level. Air that’s already hot and humid doesn’t need much changing. But in the cool and dry air, your nose needs to warm and moisturize the air first.
8. NARROW NOSES ARE FOR THE WINTER
Mark Shriver, a professor of anthropology at Penn State claims that narrower nostrils could help make the cold, dry air flow more turbulently when it comes into contact with the warm, moist mucus in your nose making it easier for people with narrow noses to survive a chilly climate.
9. NOSE DIFFERENCES EQUAL SEXUAL DIMORPHISM
The study also pointed towards another theory which suggests that our nose differences might be the result of sexual dimorphism, or the differences between males and females. For example, men’s noses were larger on average than women’s noses.
10. PROBLEMS FOR WORLD TRAVELERS
If you love to travel, the researchers warn that someone with a narrow nose could have increased difficulty breathing if an environment that is hot and humid, and the same is true for those with wider noses living in colder temperature. In essence, your nose could have serious medical implications.