SEOUL, June 9 (UPI) -- North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's unmistakable weight gain has been followed by another subtle change in his appearance: premature graying of his otherwise healthy-looking hair, according to South Korea reports.
The latest images of the 32-year-old Kim published in North Korea's state newspaper showed the leader's slicked back hair with signs of premature aging, Yonhap reported Tuesday.
The photographs of Kim accompanied an article on his visit to a historic site commemorating the Korean War, known in North Korea as the Great Fatherland Liberation War. The pictures showed Kim talking to his entourage as he toured the site and provided field guidance.
Kim's premature gray strands were not visible in a more recent series of photographs taken on May 15. The sudden change had analysts speculating about the stress that he may have been experiencing due to internal power struggles inside North Korea's military.
Park Jun-kyu, a South Korean traditional medicine doctor told Yonhap Kim's premature graying could be a sign of kidney problems – and the diminished presence of an essential male hormone.
Park said the graying and the significant weight gain Kim is experiencing could mean the North Korean leader is under a "great deal of stress."
On Tuesday, Cho Han-beom, an analyst at the Korean Institute for National Unification, said the ongoing power struggles inside the North Korean military is a sign the inexperienced Kim is having trouble stabilizing his power base, South Korean newspaper Herald Business reported.