Human beings have five senses, that of smell, taste, sight, sound, and touch. Among these, only our sense of smell is outside of our control, and cannot easily be blocked.
Our nose operates 24/7, and what we smell through it directly affects how we feel, changing our mood or state of health in a flash. Why is this? How is this possible? Let’s have a look.
Volume of Breath
An average adult inhales about 13,000 liters of air per day. That’s huge. We want to feed our lungs and body something nice, not chemicals.
The generation and neutralization of cell-damaging free radicals is closely tied to the substances we breathe in. On average, an individual faces 73,000 free radical attacks per day.
Naturally, we’d want to neutralize them as much as possible to avoid aging or sickness. So we do what we can. We keep eating food rich in antioxidants, and we keep breathing fresh air (hopefully).
Air can be purified with essential oils to help minimize damage from free radicals. On the other hand, synthetic fragrances hinder, rather than help.
Synthetics have been found as contaminants in blood and breast milk, according to a Greenpeace study. There is also evidence of potential endocrine-disrupting effects to the body from some musk compounds commonly used in perfumes.
In addition to the harm it could cause to our health, an awful smell is very annoying. Smells can also transport us to another time, which could be a negative or positive memory, depending on the scent.
The fresh scent of an orange peel, for example, or the pleasant aroma of fresh flowers, can lift our moods instantly, and shouldn’t have any negativity associated with it. Aromatherapy, with pleasant scents, is immensely beneficial for one’s physical and mental health.
Aroma molecules enter our bodies, and impact our bodies instantly: for instance, inhaling peppermint to reduce headaches or niaouli (often compared with tea tree) for a congested nose.
Unlike the food we eat, which takes at least a couple of hours to be digested and delivered to our organs, essential oils can be measured in our blood as soon as a few minutes after we inhale.
I created an organic beauty company with inspiration from my childhood experiences with scent in the garden, and from Australia’s vast nature canvas and natural lifestyle values. I am also a certified aromatherapist.
I want everyone to experience the kind of bliss I have from natural scents. It is a form of healing, and so much better than the synthetic scents which are everywhere around us these days. My hair and skin care products are all infused with pure essential oils, and nothing artificial or chemical based.
When we bathe or shower, we are intensely inhaling our personal care products. Under this condition, it is even more important that we breathe only what is pure.
To detox and refresh our bodies, I strongly suggest products that contain only natural substances to scent both our homes and our bodies. It is also helpful to expose ourselves to natural, organic aromas — such as going to parks or participating in outdoor activities — as much as possible.
Moreen Liao is a descendant of four generations of traditional Chinese medicine doctors. She is also a certified aromatherapist and the founder of Ausganica, a manufacturer of salon-quality, certified organic cosmetics. Visit Ausganica.