Irish red hair a result of our lack of sunlight
Irish people developed their red hair because of a lack of sunlight, according to new research from a leading DNA lab.
Irelands DNA has revealed that one in 10 Irish people have red hair but it is thought that up to half the population could be carrying the redhead gene even though they are blonde or brunette.
The DNA laboratory carrying out research into the flame-haired gene believes it is so associated with Ireland and Scotland because it is connected to a lack of vitamin D, which is related to the lack of sunlight.
It is thought Ireland, Scotland and northern England have the highest concentration of Titian-haired people in the world because the Celtic colouring is genetically programmed to work better in our sun-starved countries.
“It’s to do with the cloudy climate,” said Helen Moffat, marketing manager at IrelandsDNA.
“Scandinavia has perhaps less hours of sunshine but Ireland and Britain are much cloudier so the Vitamin D we get is much lower in comparison to somewhere like Scandinavia where they seem to have more sunshine.
“The fairer you are, the more vitamin D you can absorb. Red hair is associated with fair skin due to the lower melanin concentration and this has advantages as more vitamin D can be absorbed.”
Alastair Moffat, managing director of the genetic research laboratory, said two of the most common redhead gene variants came from just two Asian people 70,000 years ago.
IrelandsDNA, which focuses on probing people’s heritage, has developed a new test that allows parents to see if they might have red-haired children.
They are hoping the test – which will show that many brunette and blondes unknowingly carry the redhead gene – will curb the prejudice and teasing some redheads face.
In Ireland 10 per cent of people are redheads while in Scotland up to 13 per cent have red hair and in England six per cent have red hair.
This is considerably higher than in the rest of the world. Outside Europe, only .06 per cent of people are redheaded.
For a child to have red hair, both parents must be carriers – but neither of them have to have red hair – and then there is still only a 25 per cent chance that their offspring will have it.
Kim Barilaro says
I love red hair, i am blond fron England. I would change in the blink of an eye to natural red.💖
Ripai Tamihana says
I love red hair men, so sexy. Father to my children had ginger/ red hair as a youngster and as adults but age has darken his hair..more grey now; himself and a younger brother from nine siblings had red hair. From this family only two neices and a nephew have ginger/red hair but one (a girl) has a kind of burnt red, a bit dark but lovely colour. None of our five children have red hair, they all have black hair, their children have black hair as well.
Joseph C Tague says
Nice …. and i love red hair women ….natural 🙂
Patricia Greenawalt says
Both myself and my older brother and younger sister have red hair. Both my children were brunettes but my daughter’s youngest child has red hair. ( My granddaughter) The eldest granddaughter is a brunette
Margaret Elizabeth Anne Wild says
My grandfather is Irish and my grandaughter has redhair, she is beautiful.
Wendy Dear says
I am a redhead, only one in a family of 7. Australian dad of Irish descent and English mother of Irish descent. I believe it may have a Neanderthal. Connection as I also have blue eyes and white freckled skin
Pippi Søegaard says
Both my parents had red hair, so all 3 siblings got it.
My children do not, as their father is from India, but when they grow a beard, it has streaks of red in it.
We are Norwegians. I always love coming to Ireland, as I feel very welcome
Myrto Koumoundourea says
I was born in Athens Greece and I am red hair. No family member is red hair. My father used to tell me about my red hair grandmother which Is dead.
Janet Simpson says
I have dark red hair (auburn) my father also had dark red hair, my mom had light strawberry red hair. My brother has carrot red hair. My son has mouse like hair yet his beard is red. His oldest daughter has dark red hair. Both her mom and dad have red hair.
Emery Goff says
Our granddaughter in law is a redhead, grandson is blond, their little girl is redheaded, and we are delighted!
Sharon O'Connor says
A lovely redhaired young man in Denmark suffered greatly from sunburn always, as do I, Irish with very dark hair, pale skin. This lovely young man married a Japanese girl, so he thought his children would be safe from his problems. Dark hair, check, dark skin, check. She gave Birthe to a beautiful Japanese girl, with red hair and freckles. 😀, pale skin. Who would believe it.
Dark hair(Black) and very fair skin with freckles and tendancy to burn is also common in Ireland.
They researched this years ago and decided it came from invaders, who originated from Saxony.
Children should be proud to be red headed, the bullies are just jealouse.
My grandfather had red hair. None of his children did but each of his children had one redheaded child. All different reds, strawberry blond, carrot and auburn.
Holly Wheeler says
In the small community of St. Paul’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, three quarters of the people there are red-headed. I’ve never seen so many red-heads in one spot in my life as what I’ve seen on St. Paul’s. Then you take a 20 minute drive up the coast to the community of Parsons Pond, and there’s even more red-headed people! Way too noticeable not to notice.
I have red hair maternal aunt and paternal GF had red hair.
My sons have brown and blond hair but red beards and brown Scilla hair. What’s that about?
Rosalie Rogers says
Why do chldren with red hair often develop dark brown hair as adukts?
James Scala says
My mother has jet black hair & my late father had black hair until it turned Grey from old age. I had bright red hair as child, then turned auburn. All the women used to go crazy over the color of my hair and I hated it when I was younger. My wife has blonde hair and my son has the most beautiful head of red hair that I’ve ever seen. I love it
My grand father had red hair his mother was Irish and his father French My mother had auburn hair
Kerry Patrick says
I was the only redhead in the family besides my great granny and a great uncle. Now I have a boy and a girl both red like me!
Teri Sherman says
Loved this read! I’m in the US and I have red hair and so do 2 of my 5 kids! My mother and two uncles have red hair as well!
Nancy Wright says
I have Auburn hair , My Mother had flame red hair my children, one dark one blonde two bright red hair I believe my Grand father on my Mother’s side was a red head as was his Mother from Ireland.
Ulla Fresk says
I miss my red hair since it turned beige with age after 60. My two children are redheads, but none of my 6 grandchildren sorry to say. Love them anyway, but there is something special with redheads I think. As if you have something special in common. Now I am out of the group. ”Are you a redhead ?”people say. Yes in my soul I still am. Teased for it as a child, but admired for it as a woman.
“Red roof = wet cellar “ , sayin 😉 👆😆
R. Rusty says
In my family. I was the only red head, but my sons had red beards not red hair. no red heads in their children but a red head great grandson has my red hair. In looking at my family tree I had a great grandmother who had red hair. I guess it skips a generation in my family. My great grandmother, me, my great grandson. Although my hair in white in front and yellow goldish color now at 80 yrs.
G L Watson says
I had 6 lovely red-haired Girlfriends in my youth… Could never get enough of looking at them…