Smell is our most dramatic sense.
As example, it might have been years since losing touch with a friend who always wore one particular brand of perfume. One day, while wandering through the mall, someone passes you adorned in that exact long-forgotten fragrance. As it gently wafts past, you are without delay jolted back to a vibrant, dynamic, long-forgotten recollection. Only the sense of small transports us so fully. Photos bring back images. Recordings make us nostalgic, smell stands alone in its ability to transform.
Smell is so potent and primal a force that it can induce healing, as evidenced by the increasing popularity of scented candles, essential oils, and aromatherapy. Smell can change thoughts or moods; even triggering us to take actions to which we might normally be resistant. Want to get your kid off the couch? No problem. According to researchers, the aroma of strawberries generates an urge to exercise.
While on the topic of a increased activity, suppose your husband or male partner has become lackluster in the bedroom. Re-kindle that waning passion by combining the scents of pumpkin pie and lavender, at least according to researchers. Conversely, they claim that women become more amorous when exposed to the scents of — I kid you not — cucumbers and the candy “Good and Plenty.” Husbands, I’ll meet you at the produce section; then we’ll hit the candy store!
Not wanting to be left behind, diet researchers have discovered that we actually tend to eat more (sic) when food has been altered to have a bad smell instead of a pleasant smell. To me, this seems counter-intuitive, but the results stand. Scientists provided test subjects meals that were sprinkled with “tastants.” What they discovered was that when the aroma was enhanced with a combination of green apples and peppermint, people ate less than when the smell reminded diners of dirty socks. (I swear I am not making this up.)
Enter a new diet product claiming to take advantage of our subconscious triggers. The manufacturer claims that to lose weight, all one must do is sprinkle their powdery product on every morsel of food consumed. In the name of easy weight loss, I guess some will consume just about anything as its formula includes silica (found in sand) and Carmine, the latter a derivative of carminic acid, found in insects, who apparently do not part with it willingly. Therefore it is obtained by boiling down dry insect carcasses.
Dead insects notwithstanding, several participants engaged in a six-month study, where they lost an average of about 30 pounds each. I’ll admit that’s a healthy, realistic weight loss; but I would be remiss to not point out that any healthy eating program would generate similar results. More importantly, in the latter case, the loss would more likely be sustained long-term because the dieter actually changed her lifestyle.
So how does it work? What allegedly occurs is that this product works with your taste and smell senses to trigger the satiety center of the brain, naturally inducing the feeling of fullness. Here’s where I have my biggest difficulty. Even if it works and it does provide a sense of fullness, most overweight folks usually do not usually stop eating when they feel satisfied. If we did, we wouldn’t be overweight. The reality is we tend to eat more for external reasons, such as emotions or celebrations, than for hunger. So anything that doesn’t address that core issue simply does not pass the smell test.