Here is what the researchers recently said about ‘aromatherapy’ and how just a whiff of a special fragrance can bear a profound effect on mood, memory, and overall health, and evoke a happy magical moment.
We all have a hoard of fragrant memories stored in our brains, and these special scents, when associated with life, can change your mood.
During a study conducted by the Ohio State University, the subjects were exposed to two different fragrances “ lavender and lemon. Lavender is believed to have a calming effect, while lemon is invigorating. The subjects were asked to sniff these before and after a mildly stressful event. The scientists found that it helped in enhancing positive mood in the lemon group. This is due to the fact that ‘norepinephrine’, the energizing hormone stayed high for those who smelled lemon, while the lavender sniffers did not receive any boost.
In a new study conducted at the Research Foundation in Chicago, about 1436 obese people lost an average of 14 kilos in a six months duration, by sprinkling intensely scented crystals on their food (particularly by using pizza, taco and parmesan cheese flavors). This loss in weight has been attributed to the satiating odour and taste receptors that play a major role in weight loss. The researcher also noticed that a sniff of banana, green apple and peppermint helped reduce craving.
A group of Australian researchers, during their study noticed that smell of lavender and oranges helped their subjects in feeling less anxious, and calmer and positive, when compared to those who were not exposed to fragrance.
Researchers at the University of Northumbria, UK noticed that the college students who were exposed to scent of rosemary oil, out-performed a control group on memory tests and felt more alert throughout.
Doctors at the New York University Medical Center who exposed patients undergoing laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery to lavender oil by applying it to their anaesthesiology face masks during surgery, they noticed that patients required considerably less morphine and fewer analgesics post-operation. Even peppermint is believed to have similar effects, apart from raising energy levels.
A Korean study carried out in 2006 revealed that women with intense menstrual cramps can find relief by undergoing 15-minute abdominal massage with essential oils. The women were divided into three groups. While one group received 15-minite abdominal massage with essential oils regularly, the second group got the same massages, without the fragrance, and the third group received no therapy at all. The women in the aromatherapy group reported that their discomfort reduced by half. One such essential oil massage could be done by blending a drop of lavender oil, clary sage oil, and rose oil onto to an almond oil base.
Studies in Korea and England have shown that the lavender flower helps people with mild insomnia to sleep more deeply. Probably this could be the reason why people have been filling their pillows with lavender flowers for ages.
Now that the positive effects of odours on human mind are more evident, why not use it to your advantage?