Re: aromatherapy positively affects mood

Anders Sandberg (
27 Aug 1999 13:53:20 +0200 writes:

> >I actually tried scenting my textbook in probability theory lavender
> >many years ago. It didn't help much. :-)
> Does it work because the molecules making up the aromas are of a
>similar shape to certain neurotransmitters?

No. The odorants bind to receptors in the nasal ceiling and produce electrical signals that are processed by the olfactory system. As far as I know no odorants smell because they imitate neurotransmitters.

>And if so, does aromatherapy exist
>because it's cheaper than synethesising the neurotransmitters

It exists because people like pleasant smells, smells definitely affect our mood and memory (cf. Marcel Proust's work) and it is rather natural to use smells to affect people. No neurotransmittor similarities were intended.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y