The Scent of Better Health

Having an acute sense of smell is no longer being seen as something that is nice to have, but instead a possible key player in our very health and wellness. Researchers at the University of Michigan, University of Houston, and Baylor College of Medicine have shown in a study that sense of smell plays a role in having shorter or longer lives. This study was published in the online, open-access journal PLoS Biology. Scientist experimented with fruit flies and various worms to find the association between sense of smell and health. Results showed that by removing the ability to smell they lived longer. Researchers are unsure of exactly which specific sensory receptors are causing this. In this study the researchers found that the fruit flies who could not smell co2 lived longer, while in an older study they discovered that the ability to sense food or danger actually added to one’s lifespan. “We are working hard to understand how sensory perception affects health, and our new result really narrows the playing field.” -says Scott Pletcher, one of the lead researchers.

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