How many times have you mistaken a random person for someone you know, only to be embarrassed about it later? Well, I have been on the receiving end of it on numerous occasions. There have also been incidents of people mistaking me for someone they know. As unsettling as it may sound, there is some truth in the doppelgänger theory! 

Going by the dictionary meaning: a doppelgänger is a look-alike or double of a living person, sometimes portrayed as a paranormal phenomenon, and in some traditions even as a harbinger of bad luck. 

Well, let's just ignore the second part to it and cut to the chase:

Surprising as it may sound, the phenomenon of having a doppelgänger could be common in today's world, states a Cornell University research!

Source: Blogspot

Courtesy the limited number of genes that decided the contour of the face, nose and even eye colour; having a doppelgänger is akin to getting the same hand twice from a single deck of cards.

This is according to a study by Michael Sheehan, Assistant Professor of Neurobiology and Behaviour at Cornell University.

Source: Pixelaco

A similar pairing of genes in two people, can result in similar features in both.

Irrespective of whether they're related or not. 

Source: Scandibuzz

In some doppelgänger scenarios, two people who look quite the same may even be distantly related!

People, hailing from the same ethnicity have a larger set of "common genes" as opposed to those outside their group. 

According to this theory, people hailing from one ethnicity have more chances of finding a doppelgänger from the same ethnicity. For instance a South Asian is more likely to have a South Asian doppelgänger. 

Source: Upsocl

But because of global emigration and people mating outside their ethnicity, the likelihood of having a doppelgänger increases. 

Source: News AU

Don't be surpised the next time you see someone who bears an uncanny resemblance to you. Chances are, he/she might be your relative!