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Trust the science. Don’t trust the hype

Posted on August 20, 2011 by James Kohl.

The Scent of a Woman: Don’t trust the hype about pheromones and sexual attraction.

“Doty refers to a 2004 study on sheep that interrogated the long-held assumption that females ovulate in the presence of males, most likely due to pheromones. The researchers put lavender on the males and after a few mating sessions, the females began ovulating from the scent of lavender alone. The findings suggest that the females’ hormonal response was an acquired behavior, rather than an innate one.”

In the excerpt quoted above, Doty or an ignorant article author turned the effect of pheromones on luteinizing hormone (LH) into an acquired behavior due to lavender. Trust me, or read it yourself: The 2004 study on sheep demonstrates that ewes learn to associate lavender odor with their sexual partner. A 2010 study shows this association is made via an effect on LH. A 2011 study reports that the effect on LH is linked to testosterone levels of the male, and results soon to be published show the effect of the testosterone-associated pheromones on female behavior is not due to the visual appeal of the male, and that sexual experience is not required (in goats).

Where’s the hype about pheromones that you can’t trust? Four additional studies show exactly the opposite of what we’re told in the article. It’s the pheromones that alter LH and behavior in the sheep (and all other mammals). The effect of food odor on LH is not due to the visual appeal of the food, either.

Trust the science!

Androstenol effects LH in women. It is found in male axillary secretions, which influence LH and mood in women.

We used a mixture of androstenol (which effects LH), and androsterone, (which is an indicator of testosterone levels), to make a man more visually appealing. Earlier this year, our results were presented to other scientists at the Association for Chemoreception Sciences conference. We showed that a mixture of androstenol and androsterone increased women’s observed flirtatious behavior and their self-reported level of attraction. Our results indicate androsterone, which is associated with testosterone levels in human males, affects behavior during 15-minutes of exposure in a typical social circumstance.

Those who understand anything about the biology of behavior will recognize the suspected effect on LH and the demonstrable behavioral affect are expected when testing either food odors or social odors. The social odors are pheromones. Adding human pheromones (specifically, our mixture of androstenol and androsterone) increases sex appeal the same way adding spice increases the appeal of food. Not everyone will respond favorably to all pheromones or all spices, but the effect on hormones and affects on behavior are very predictable. Only a fool would argue against cause and effect with regard to pheromones in any species.

Who’s fooling who about human pheromones, sexual attraction, and who you can trust?

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James Kohl
Retired medical laboratory scientist

James Kohl




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James Kohl owns Pheromones.com, and he has published books and award-winning research journal articles about human pheromones. With colleagues he was the first to show that a mixture of human pheromones increases the flirtatious behaviors of women, and increases their level of attraction to the man wearing the mixture - during a real-life social circumstance lasting 15 minutes.

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What is the vomeronasal organ (VNO)?

The vomeronasal organ (VNO) is a cone-shaped organ in the nasal cavity, which is believed to be one of the body's receptors of pheromones. More, specifically, the VNO, which is part of the accessory olfactory system in the nose, does not respond to normal scents, but may detect odorless, barely perceptible pheromones.

Other schools of thought believe that it is not the VNO but rather cells in our main olfactory system and their affects on hormones secreted by the hypothalamus that are responsible for the affects of pheromones.

Learn more about the science behind pheromones here.

What are optimized pheromones?

Optimized pheromones are lab-certified pheromone formulations that have the optimum concentration of biologically active pheromones scientifically proven to produce behavior-altering results -- particularly as sexual attractants. Optimized pheromone formulations do not necessarily contain the maximum level of pheromones available on the market, but rather contain the greatest degree (and combination)of human pheromones that trigger a conditioned biological response in humans that, in turn, dictate their sexual behavior. Optimized pheromones also release neurotransmitters that directly modify the behavior of the opposite sex, such as triggering sexual excitement. For example:

Optimized pheromones for men are scientifically proven to bring about an increase in the luteinizing hormone (LH) in women, thereby causing a woman to have a heightened sexual responsiveness to a man. This LH surge elevates a woman's predisposition towards sexual activity.

Optimized pheromones for women are scientifically proven to bring about a biochemical surge in men, thereby causing a man to have a heightened sexual responsiveness to a woman. This biochemical surge is what makes a man fiercely determined to copulate.