A recent study found that Mormons can be picked out of a crowd, simply due to their skin texture.
The Canadian study was performed by non-LDS psychology professor, Nicholas Rule of Toronto University. Rule began the study with several pictures of both Mormon and non-Mormon men and women.
“We first took out the hair, then took away the shape of the face, then looked at different features: Is it the eyes, the mouth, the nose?” Rule told The Universe. “We kept going until we got to having a face with very little left, and so the only thing that seemed reasonable was that it was skin texture.”
Participants were then asked to identify which of the men and women pictured were LDS and which were not. Following several tests and additional studies, Rule came to the conclusion that skin texture was the common factor that indicated whether or not the individual was of the Mormon faith.
Rule said these results stem from the healthy lifestyle many Mormons live, including the abstaining of drugs, tea, alcohol, coffee, and tobacco. As a result of this healthy lifestyle, Mormons live an average of seven to ten years longer than the average American.
Results of the study showed that 60 percent of non-Mormons could identify Mormons in a crowd, and an even greater amount of Mormons could identify other Mormons in a crowd. Rule feels like these results are statistically significant.
“People make inferences about group membership based on how healthy someone looks, and some see spirituality in that,” Rule told The Universe. “Something as benign as skin texture can tell us if someone is in a particular group and may affect how we behave toward that person.”