Influence of the nutritional status on facial morphology in young Japanese women

Sci Rep. 2022 Nov 3;12(1):18557. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-21919-5.


Evidence regarding the possible influence of nutritional status on the facial morphology has thus far been insufficient. We examined whether or not the physical body compositions and dietary behaviors were correlated with any morphological characteristics of the face. One hundred and fifteen young Japanese women participated. Variables representing the dietary behaviors were extracted from self-reported survey data, and corresponding three-dimensional (3D) facial images and body compositions were examined. Multivariate analyses identified significant relationships between the nutritional status and facial topography (p < 0.05). The clustering method revealed the existence of three dietary condition patterns ("balanced diet", "high-calorie-diet" with obesity tendency, and "imbalanced low-calorie-diet" with sarcopenic obesity tendency). Among these three patterns, a round face (increased facial width; analysis of variance [ANOVA], p < 0.05) was observed in the high-calorie-diet pattern, while the imbalanced low-calorie-diet pattern showed a more masculine face (increased face height, decreased eye height, increased non-allometric sexual shape differences; ANOVA, p < 0.05), thus suggesting the possibility of sex-hormonal influences. In summary, the body composition and dietary behaviors were found to influence the facial morphology, and potential biological influences were discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Face* / anatomy & histology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods
  • Japan
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Obesity