There is nothing worse than getting to work, school or a day out with friends and being terribly smelly from the hot walk in. Although we may think that we only smell after a heavy workout or a run around the block, we are wrong. According to scientists who study our Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) we have a pretty distinct stench, allowing ourselves to be tracked by dogs or anyone with a good ability to smell! Although this sounds pretty cool, it can also be a bit of a hindrance when it comes to relationships or health.
Lets take a look at a few meanings to our stink:
If you walk outside during summer and get eaten alive by mosquito’s, it could be because of your smell. A recent study states that the same genetic markers that influence our smell could also play a role in attracting mosquito’s. Scientists are hoping to figure out the genes that mosquito’s prefer and have recently contracted a study of subjecting twins to mosquito’s and recording which one they move to in hope to find this particular gene.
Lets not get too worried about the fact that we smell different to other people. This is definitely a good thing. According to scientists, we are more likely to be attracted to someone that doesn’t smell like us. Women were asked to smell some T-Shirts after men wore them for two days. Sounds a little gross but the results were pretty interesting. They were found to be more attracted to those who had a chemically different odor to their own. Science can be pretty nifty.
Have you ever noticed that we get a little sweaty when we are stressed, or maybe really sweaty? Well the amount of sweat isn’t the only thing that changes. Scientists believe that when stress increases, our odor actually changes in a way that our dogs can smell it. That’s right, dogs know when we are stressed. I knew it. The cool thing is that our internal odor doesn’t change, just our outer. So our dogs know it is us when we get home as well as knowing we are stressed. According to researchers in Poland, smell can indicate a persons personality as well. To prove this, they set up a similar scenario to the T-shirt smelling test, except this time, men and women wore the same t-shirt for 3 days and then a different group were asked to smell them. This time when they smelled it they had to describe the persons personality that wore it. Surprisingly they did pretty well and could determine the characteristics of these people.
Lastly, our odor can say a lot about our health. When we are particularly unwell our odor changes to reflect that. This can be very handy for Health Professionals, some can walk into a room and immediately recognize a diagnoses in a patient.
Who knew smell could tell you so much? Maybe it’s not so bad after all !