Study: ‘Old Person Smell’ Is Real

The distinctive “old person smell” you may have picked up on when visiting your grandparents most likely wasn’t your imagination, a new study indicates.

When given whiffs from pieces of pads worn under the armpits of young, middle-aged and elderly people for five consecutive nights, study participants could reliably distinguish the body odor of the elderly, who were 75 and older, the researchers found.


“The results of this study support the cross-culturally popular concept of an ‘old person odor,’” writes the international team in a study published on May 30 in the journal PLoS ONE. The notion that the elderly have a distinct smell exists in multiple cultures, and usually the odor is said to be unpleasant. But this probably has more to do with negative perceptions of old age, rather than with the odor itself, according to study researcher Johan Lundström, an assistant professor at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia.

It’s not yet clear why body odor changes as humans age or why humans are able to pick up on these changes. Body odors originate from an interaction between skin gland secretions and bacteria on our skin. As people age, the activity of different types of skin glands changes. This factor may contribute to the perceived change in body odor with age, the researchers write.

So far, scientists can only speculate on why this apparent signal for old age exists. Research in other animals indicates that such an odor may act as a sign of the “good genes” that have allowed a male to live into old age, making him more attractive to females. It’s also possible the distinctive odor is not a direct result of age; for instance, it could be associated with increased inflammation (part of an immune response) within the bodies of the elderly, Lundström said.

Do you agree with this study? Why or why not?

Source: Yahoo News

Image: Time

What a Person Notices First in a Date

Before hitting the meet-and-greet scene next weekend, what’s really going to make you more attractive to the opposite sex — and what’s a waste of your dating dollars? Check out these interesting tidbits we dug up for more budget-conscious men and women.

1. Men say that having gorgeous hair trumps a curvy figure. According to a recent survey conducted by Pantene, 60% of men surveyed would rather date a woman with great hair than noticeable curves — and 74% of them said they notice a woman because of her hair.

2. Guys find pink or red lips more alluring than the sexiest pair of stilettos. In a recent Match.com survey of over 24,000 men and women, 88% of respondents said their date’s laugh made a bigger impression on a first date; only 12% picked shoes.

3. Women looking for real relationships are more impressed by traditional love tokens than an expensive ride. While women found men showing off a flashy product to be more attractive when it came to dating, that same trait didn’t make men more desirable as marriage partners or for long-term committed relationships.


4. Men and women agree: being physically fit makes someone more attractive and relationship-worthy to them. This may be a no-brainer, but if you’re thinking of having something more than just a fling, spend your dollars getting rid of your doughy middle and strive for six-pack abs instead.

5. Bad hygiene is a universal turn-off, regardless of what you’re wearing. A recent Match.com poll asked nearly 35,000 men and women to name their biggest turn-off on a date. The responses included bad breath (11%), dirty fingernails (1%), body odor (16%) or all of the above (72%). Not surprisingly, bad hygiene is a mood killer for romance.

Source: Yahoo News

Image: Dating Do’s, Dont’s & Duh!!