According to Avery Gilbert, author of What the Nose Knows: The Science of Scent in Everyday Life, “a pheromone is a molecule released by one organism that triggers an automatic, reflex-like behavior in another member of the species. Insects are the original and still best example. Dip a swizzle stick in sex pheromone and a male cockroach will try to mate with it. Pheromones are found in mammals like pigs, hamsters and horses. The evidence is a lot shakier when you look at primates and not very convincing when it comes to humans.”
“That said, humans’ body odours carry all sorts of information, including sex, age, sexual maturity, emotional state and various cues about health. We all broadcast this information and we also respond to it, although we are not always aware of doing so. I think body odor is involved in sexual attraction, mother-infant bonding and much else we do, like how we react to our boss or what we think of the person next to us on the subway.”
So is it or isn’t it? Avery Gilbert suggests that the definition of what a pheremone is has broadened beyond the point of credible, or (read) scientific use, but leaves the jury dangling.
Curious to make up your own mind? Try out a Pheremone Party in a neighbourhood near you. http://www.pheromoneparties.com/. Just bring along a worn t-shirt and a jiffy bag and the night could be yours…
This comes from an excerpt interview with Scientist Gilbert and International Business Times – http://www.ibtimes.com/pulse/what-are-pheromones-will-they-get-you-date-valentines-day-1816602