THE SCIENCE OF SEXUAL ATTRACTION
The Science of Sexual Attraction has been getting a lot of attention lately with research studies suggesting the importance that human scent plays in attracting the opposite sex. These findings appear to answer the question do pheromones work? The answer is a definitive yes!
What is it that makes us so attracted to others and which makes us fall in love with a certain person. One of the key elements to attraction, scientists are finding, is the sense of smell. In fact, this may be even more important, according to some, than physical appearance.
A CLOSER LOOK AT THE SCIENCE OF SEXUAL ATTRACTION
Although scientists have studied pheromones for years, they are now beginning to really look at the relationship between human body odor and sexual attraction. It’s true that most people don’t recognize how much human scent contributes to our attraction to the opposite sex. Each of us has a “scent” of our own. Our body produces theses natural chemical scents or pheromones in order to communicate with others nearby.
Pheromones can influence others’ behavior and can either make us attractive to the opposite sex or turn off that attractiveness. This attractiveness may have nothing to do with physical appearance but with smell and it is very subtle and usually is an instinctive and unconscious phenomenon.
WHAT ARE PHEROMONES?
The word “pheromone” comes from the ancient Greek “pherein,” which means, “to carry,” and “-mone,” from our word “hormone.” Pheromones are chemical substances that the human body secretes. This changes the sexual or social behavior of another individual.
These natural chemical substances are a throwback to our more primitive ancestral days, when they were used to communicate with others of our species. Other species, too, rely heavily on pheromones, and they heavily influence most social behavior, including mating behaviors. In fact, despite our evolution and subsequent acquisition of language and other forms of communication, human pheromones still exist for us, too, as a form of communication. We just don’t know it.
WHAT’S THE FUNCTION OF PHEROMONES?
Today, we all still secrete our own pheromones, but our habits of good daily hygiene, including bathing daily and using such substances as deodorant and perfume, cover up our own body chemistry so that these pheromones are masked. Pheromones’ influence can also be minimized with the use of heavy clothing in colder climates, for example.
Some studies have indicated that modern social customs and norms have also affected how pheromones influence our selection of a mate. This, in turn, has also suppressed our natural pheromone production. Because of this, we may need to utilize pheromone products to supplement our own pheromone production. Use of pheromone products can not only attract a romantic partner, but it can also help facilitate communication with others, in a way. They can help us establish trusting relationships in both business and friendships.
DO PHEROMONES WORK?
On January 28, 2008, Time Magazine had as its cover story, “The Science of Romance.” This story explains the importance of human scent in terms of how others behave around you, both sexually and socially.
In fact, there’s a lot of knowledge just recently supported by research findings that indicate that pheromones in fact do work. Scientists (and just about everyone else) want to know what makes people “fall in love” and what makes people attracted to each other both romantically and socially. In fact, some scientists have hypothesized that smell can even play a greater role in determining who we find attractive than does physical appearance.
James Kohl, a well known pheromone researcher, has said that scientists have known for a long time that odors and subliminal scents, including pheromones, influence how animals mate, develop relationships, bond, and nurture offspring. Indeed, humans are no exception, and in fact, odors can do other things as well. They can control menstrual cycles, accelerate puberty, and even help influence sexual orientation. They also can help us tell the difference between strangers, members of our family, and lovers. Pheromones also let mothers and babies bond. Oftentimes, these scents even help influence what we remember, how we learn, and even how the brain itself develops.