Shocking Things You Inherited From Your Parents

Mother and daughter.
Photo by Dario Valenzuela –

How many times have you picked out striking features that you and your siblings share? Maybe you and your mother have the same charming smile. Perhaps your dad has always told you you’ve got your grandmother’s eyes. What about your bright red hair that nobody else in the family shares?

Some traits are easier to trace back to specific individuals than others. The truth is, though, that the science behind these inherited genes is far more complicated than pointing out two people’s similar smiles. When you get down into the nitty-gritty, it’s exceptionally hard to tell where all your traits come from.

Thankfully, scientists have been able to pinpoint how we pass some of our genes on. There are three main ways in which this happens. You can inherit traits through a dominant gene, such as your eye color. If your father has brown eyes while your mother has green eyes, you will get the dominant gene- in this case, you’ll end up with brown eyes.

You may also inherit recessive genes. In this case, both your parents need to have it in order for you to inherit it. Going off of the earlier example, if you have blue eyes then both your parents are carriers of the same recessive gene.

And finally, there are traits, known as X-traits that may only be passed down to you through your mother as these are only ever found in X chromosomes.

But that’s not all there is to it! In some cases, some of your traits have developed due to your environment. Now that some light has been shed as to why we look the way we do, let’s get into 6 surprising things you didn’t know you inherited from your parents!

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23 thoughts on “Shocking Things You Inherited From Your Parents”

    1. Yes Marie, High Cholesterol can be inherited. My brother and I both have Hereditary High Cholesterol from our father. This can be controlled by medication. You must be under doctor’s care and be on a special diet.

  1. My father was the easiest man going, everyone liked him. I never saw him angry My mother was high energy with great sense of humor .During the 2nd WW she held three jobs. I am very fortunate to have acquired these beneficial genes !

  2. It seems we have sll boys in our
    Family or all girls. Our mothers had
    All girls and my sister snd i had all boys. As a cousin.

  3. I have dimples, neither of my parents had them. I found out later in life my biological Father of which I did not know existed had dimples. I always knew growing up I did not fit in the family.

    1. You do know that you were very well loved, right? You don’t need to have the same facial features to have a father who loves you beyond any measure. If you are/ were any fry please let it go. I found out that my mother was pregnant before my parents were married. I as so haunted for so many years for very stupid reasons. My parents weren’t perfect???!! Don’t let this happen to you!

  4. I just turned 70 years old. I have outlived my Mother and Father by many years. Both died of lung cancer as well as my sister. My Father died when he was 44…my Mother died when she was 64 and my sister died when she was 56. I feel grateful to still be alive and well at 70.

  5. I am just like my mother in looks and emotions. She had dementia so I am scared to death I will have it. There is a good chance since I have had a craniotomy for an aneurysm

  6. What a gift to have found out and now you have more people to love you. This is a circle of love not a triangle and thank God your mother brought you into the world. You have so much to be thankful for. God Bless!

  7. My father had 2 sisters and 8 brothers. He had 3 daughters, all 3 us girls have boys names.
    I am having difficulty losing weight, now I know it’s in the genes!

  8. I am lucky enough to get the brown fat from my dad, yes I am being a little sarcastic but at least now I know why I am overweight

  9. I’m hoping I have not inherited and will not inherit Alzheimer’s/Dementia from my mother. I am the daughter and primary caretaker of my mother who has it. Her mother and sister had both had it and had since passed. I’ve mentioned it to my Primary Care Doctor, but she said there’s no test for it. Please reply to this if any one knows what I should be doing now. It will be greatly appreciated!

  10. I’m 58 and I was always told in school to go sit down and my report cards said I visited with class mates Doing study time. Focusing has always been a issue never been tested for ADD? My kindergarten teacher saw it ,what a great teacher

    a little Marijuana does help To focus nice to see see it used leagally these days

  11. My husband has a significant risk of developing inherited Alzheimer’s because his mother and several other close relatives had it. We volunteered for research studies on Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia 5 years ago. We chose a study that needed both Alzheimer’s risk and no known risk participants so we could both be involved. We are still in the original study and were asked to participate in 2 more studies. We have gotten important and helpful information from MRIs, lumbar punctures, cognition tests, blood work, and other tests used in the study. When an appropriate drug is available, we will be offered the opportunity to join the trials , and almost certainly the first person to be cured of Alzheimer’s will be a trial subject. We live about 30 miles from a major brain studies research center, but we would drive much farther to have this opportunity.

    1. Thank God we have progressed this far. I will send prayers to you and your family. I believe wonderful discoveries are right around the corner. God bless Stella

  12. It was very interesting, I find that what was said made so much since. I am a family of five, four girls and one boy. The three older sisters look alike, light hair, blue or green eyes. The younger sister and brother are brown with either green or brown eyes. We all have many allergies from both parents. I find also we have many of their illness. I am glad I read this. Thank you.

  13. Strangely enough my husband has inherited his father’s nasty attitude. I didn’t realize that was possible but close friends of my husband’s tell me his dad was quite the ‘blanky blank’. My husband is now 79 and is quite the entitled SOB. This is strange because he used to be so mellow. It must be possible to inherit personality traits as well as genetic traits.

  14. I am 81 years old and all my life have had a terrible sense of direction. Recently, I received a notice from “23andme” that I was found to have 2 variants in my DNA establishing the fact that I had a genetic propensity for that trait.

  15. I have inherited a lot from my mom but not Alzheimer’s, she died at 94 with a pretty clear mind. She had a stroke at 89 and was disabled though. She had smoked from age 12 to age 50 so that contributed to probably her stroke but I neither smoke or drink or take any drugs or ever and I keep a watch on my body. The only problem is I inherited from her ADHD which she was never diagnosed for because in those days the teachers had kids in in one room schools and because she couldn’t learn to read she through the book at the teacher and the teacher wouldn’t teach, they threw her out. My grandfather told her that she didn’t have to go back to school and she never learned how to read but just a little. Now when I went to school I had such a hard time learning and understanding that the teachers were not educated in dyslexia or ADHD so they though you stupid so I was placed at the back of the class and left much of the time without help or was embarrassed. As I got older in school though, I absolutely fell in love with books and history and was a reading fool but my grades didn’t show it because everything was backwards or hard to understand. In my old age now at 71 I know now that I was very dyslexic and had ADHD and have tried to understand better and teach myself and educate others about me and this problem. Thank you for this article, please write more about this.

  16. Larry Gustafson

    My father had two sisters. My mother had two brothers. My parents had three boys. One of my brothers had three girls. My other brother was married but had no children. My wife and I had three sons. One of my sons had three girls and one boy. Another of our sons had one girl (and two boys came from his wife’s previous marriage). Our third son had one boy and one girl.
    —Interesting that there are only two guys out of 20 responders. Are only women interested in this type of information?

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