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New Evidence Emphasizing Sense of Smell in Sexual Attraction

April 10, 2008 | 69,137 views
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attraction, pheromones, sexual cuesResearchers have recently discovered a “secret sex nerve” that they say may control who you are sexually attracted too. This olfactory nerve may be the route through which pheromones are processed.

Nerve “O” has endings in the nasal cavity, but the fibers go directly to the sexual regions of your brain. Because Nerve O bypasses the olfactory cortex, it does not register a conscious smell, but rather identifies chemical sexual cues.

Research has shown that the unconscious cues processed by Nerve “O” can “make or break a relationship.” For instance, you are more likely to be attracted to people whose scent is dissimilar to your own. Couples who have high levels of chemicals in common are more likely to encounter fertility issues, miscarriage and infidelity.

However, pregnant women are drawn to people with similar chemical makeup. This means that if you are taking a hormonal contraceptive, which fools your body into thinking you are pregnant, you might be more attracted to people with similar chemical makeup. If you were on the pill when you met your mate, you might, therefore, feel less attracted to him when you stop taking it.

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Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Pheromones are chemical signals that animals secrete to communicate their gender or reproductive status to other animals. Well, it turns out that you give off pheromones as well, and these chemicals -- which you don’t consciously smell or recognize at all -- may play a role in helping you find a good partner.

So if you find yourself inexplicably attracted to a stranger you’ve just met, it could very well be their chemical signals that you find irresistible.

Not long ago, scientists were still debating whether humans even noticed chemical signals the way other animals do, but now that is fairly set in stone.

These signals play an important role from a reproductive standpoint in that they help you find a partner who is different, chemically speaking, from yourself. This gives you the best chances of reproducing successfully and even staying together without infidelity.

Chemical signals like pheromones are, in fact, constantly at work in your environment, but they are not only about sexuality. For instance:
  • Women who sniffed fear-induced sweat became more mentally alert and intelligent, according to a study in Chemical Senses.
  • Studies have shown that women can pick a T-shirt worn by their infant from a pile of T-shirts. Babies also respond to the breast pads worn by their own mothers, but not to those worn by other women.
  • The smell of other women’s perspiration causes women’s menstrual cycles to speed up or slow down. This helps explain why women who live together often menstruate at the same time each month.
What about Pheromone-Enriched “Love Potions”?

In recent years, pheromones have become quite trendy, and they’re now showing up in perfumes and colognes that promise to make you more sexually attractive.

Do they work?

Well, some studies have actually found that people wearing these scents are more interesting to the opposite sex, but this could simply be a placebo effect, where the person believes they will be more attractive, and therefore are.

Plus, I would caution against wearing any synthetic perfume or cologne, as they’re almost always loaded with synthetic chemicals that have been linked to cancer, reproductive toxicity, allergies and more.

Another Lesson about the Dangers of Birth Control Pills

This study touches on another important factor, and that is what birth control pills may be doing to your body on a very subtle level. When a woman takes a hormonal contraceptive, her body believes, in a sense, that she is pregnant. And this causes her to become unconsciously attracted to men with a similar, rather than different, chemical makeup. Well, this may not cause any major problems for most people, but the alarming fact still exists that these pills are altering, on a very subtle level, chemical signals in your body.

There really is no telling just what implications this could have, which is why I strongly suggest that women avoid birth control pills like the plague and seek out natural family planning methods instead.

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