Your Favorite Fall Scents Have Some Major Health Benefits

09/17/2013 03:58am ET | Updated December 6, 2017
smiling happy girl lying in...

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While autumn doesn’t officially begin until later this month, the passing of the Labor Day holiday and the impending chill in the air are enough to put us in the mood. The scents of season are strong and invigorating -- and can actually be beneficial to your well-being.

1. Cinnamon

One whiff of this warm scent can instantly make you feel cozy. But did you know it can also sharpen your mind? Research has shown that the smell of cinnamon can help boost brain function. According to a Wheeling Jesuit University study, those who were given the sweet spice improved in cognitive activities such as visual-motor response, working memory and attention span.

2. Pumpkin

Eau de Pumpkin? Touted as the symbol of the season, the iconic fall aroma is also an olfactory aphrodisiac for men. A study conducted by The Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation showed that 40 percent of the male test subjects responded positively to the scent when it was mixed with lavender.

3. Apples
fall apples

In addition to being the main ingredient in fall favorites like Apple Crisp, this superfruit's scent can mitigate a migraine. A 2008 study showed that those who found the scent appealing also had a noticeable ease in their headache symptoms and a shortened migraine episode. Previous research using the green apple's odor has also found the scent can aid in reducing anxiety during stressful situations.

4. Autumn Leaves

The foliage mixed with crisp air is most commonly associated with the fall -- and its visual appeal isn't too terrible either. There's nothing more reenergizing than the scent of fresh air with the sun beaming through the colorful trees. In fact, it's the brightening power of daylight that prompts the warm hues we love about the season. The most vivid leaf colors, which bring the perfume of autumn, develop best when the days are cool and sunny.

5. Nutmeg

Not only can the spice enhance your morning coffee, but the rich, earthy aroma of nutmeg also has a myriad of health benefits. When used in incense, nutmeg is a go-to scent for sleep, as it can induce muscle relaxation and stress relief. The spice may also help your memory. Studies have discovered that myristicin, a property found in nutmeg, can restrict the enzyme that contributes to Alzheimer’s disease.

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