Nutrients 2009, 1(1), 3-17; doi:10.3390/nu1010003
Review

The Amelioration of Olfactory Acuity upon Sexual Maturation Might Affect Food Preferences

1,* email, 2email, 3email and 2email
Received: 14 April 2009; Accepted: 14 May 2009 / Published: 10 June 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: Upon sexual maturation, olfactory acuity in women ameliorates and starts oscillating across the cycle. During ovulation, mean olfactory threshold is 30 times lower than during bleeding. Interestingly, menstruated women undergo maleodorant trimethylaminuria. We argued that olfactory amelioration during ovulation might concur to a mating strategy, whereas olfactory impairment during bleeding might protect women against self-refusal. Testosterone and its 17β-estradiol derivative might be responsible for the synchronization of these menstrual events. Furthermore, we posed the question whether olfactory detection amelioration upon sexual maturation might provoke a change in food preferences, for instance a reduction in fish consumption. A preliminary survey in Italy provided encouraging results: 15-44 year-old women have lower fish consumption than 3-14 year-old girls. Surprisingly, men exhibited the same behaviour, so new olfactory tests as well as testosterone measurements are under way.
Keywords: olfactory threshold; menstrual cycle; testosterone; trimethylamine; fish consumption; food preferences
PDF Full-text Download PDF Full-Text [375 KB, uploaded 10 June 2009 06:33 CEST]

Export to BibTeX |
EndNote


MDPI and ACS Style

Bignetti, E.; Sinesio, F.; Aiello, G.L.; Cannella, C. The Amelioration of Olfactory Acuity upon Sexual Maturation Might Affect Food Preferences. Nutrients 2009, 1, 3-17.

AMA Style

Bignetti E, Sinesio F, Aiello GL, Cannella C. The Amelioration of Olfactory Acuity upon Sexual Maturation Might Affect Food Preferences. Nutrients. 2009; 1(1):3-17.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bignetti, Enrico; Sinesio, Fiorella; Aiello, Gaetano L.; Cannella, Carlo. 2009. "The Amelioration of Olfactory Acuity upon Sexual Maturation Might Affect Food Preferences." Nutrients 1, no. 1: 3-17.

Nutrients EISSN 2072-6643 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert