Friday, March 11, 2016

Kinky sex is more common among the general population : New Survey

A new research published in recently published in The Journal of Sex from Institut Philippe-Pinel de Montreal and the Institut universitaire en sante mentale de Montreal , affiliated to the Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres reveals what we think is abnormal sexual behaviour or impulse characterised by intense sexual fantasies and urges that keep coming back is actually fairly common among people, including women. Based on the phone and online survey of 1,040 residents of Quebec the main goal of the study was to determine normal sexual desires and experiences in a representative sample of the general population. The findings showed a number of legal sexual interests and behaviours considered anomalous in psychiatry are actually common in the general population. Whilst men are more interested in paraphilic behaviours than women. Seems according to this research, women share the same interests. Women who reported an interest in sexual submission had more varied sexual interests and reported greater satisfaction with their sex lives. The data revealed less than half (45.6 percent) of the sample subjects were interested in at least one type of sexual behaviour that is considered anomalous, and one third (33 percent) had experienced the behaviour at least once.

Out of the eight types of paraphilic behaviour listed in the DSM-5, four (voyeurism - 35%, fetishism - 26%, frotteurism - 26% and masochism - 19%) are neither rare nor unusual when it comes to the experiences or desires reported by men and women. The researchers also found a statistically significant relationship between an interest in sexual submission and an interest in other sexual activities, suggesting that the desire to engage in masochism is significantly associated with more diverse sexual interests.

Christian C. Joyal et al. The Prevalence of Paraphilic Interests and Behaviors in the General Population: A Provincial Survey, The Journal of Sex Research (2016).

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Oh, what big feet you have: Myth and fact

Men with big feet do not necessarily have a large manhood, a study suggests. Researchers at University College London say there is no evidence linking a man's shoe size to the length of his penis. After measuring the vital parts of more than 100 men, they concluded the theory has no scientific basis. It has long been suggested that various parts of a man's body including his nose, hands or feet could reliably indicate their penis size. Dr Jyoti Shah and colleagues at UCL and St Mary's Hospital London disagree and say their findings dispel the theory around feet, at least.

The ability to predict the size of a man's penis by observing his shoe size is a common misconception. They examined 104 men attending a London urology clinic. They included teenagers and pensioners and the average age was 54. The researchers measured the men's penises when soft and gently stretched. Writing in the British Journal of Urology International, they said: "All lengths were measured by two urologists and recorded to the nearest 0.5cm. The age and shoe size was documented." While the true size of the penis can only be determined when erect, the researchers said that their method provided a good indication of length. The researchers found that the average penis was 13cm when soft and gently stretched. This figure ranged from 6 cm at the lower end of the scale to 18cm at the higher end. The men had an average British shoe size of 9 or 43 in European measurements. However, they found no correlation between shoe size and penis length.

On the heels of a previous report that debunked the notion that a man's shoe size could be used to estimate the length of his penis, a study claims those with inquiring minds need merely take a gander at a man's forefinger. According to Greek scientists, the length of a man's index finger can accurately predict the length of his penis. In the study researchers measured penile length and testicular volume in 52 healthy young males between the ages of 19 and 38 and compared them with other body measurements including height, weight, body mass index, and index finger length and waist/hip ratio. Age and (body measurements) were not associated with the size of the genitalia, excluding the index finger length, which correlated significantly with the dimensions of the flaccid, maximally stretched, penis.

Scientists are increasingly interested in what determines the length of fingers and have come up with a fascinating explanation. In males the length of fingers is determined by the levels of androgens (that’s male sex hormones) contained within the embryonic fluid, during early pregnancy. Scientists have associated the size of the index finger to the levels of estrogen bathing the fetus. This is also thought to be the time when the penis is being developed and hence the potential correlation. The index finger is used by those who read hands and says much about the person’s leadership abilities, ambition, and self-esteem. According to experts, each of our four fingers represents a different aspect of personality. People with average length index fingers are not especially dominating but neither are they easily led. A long index finger indicates assertiveness and driving ambition which is accompanied with self-confidence. A very long index finger was found in bossy people always pointing their finger at others. Natural leaders and athletes have long index fingers as a rule. People with shorter than average index fingers are somewhat timid. In the average hand, the index and ring fingers are about the same length but a noticeably shorter index finger may belong to a cold individual who probably dislikes having restrictions placed upon them. These people dislike criticism but are happy to give it out. The ring finger or soul finger is where the soul leaves the body, after death. But in life, it provides clues about a person’s creativity and sense of well being. Comparing the length of fingers is also thought to be revealing. When the ring finger is longer than the index finger then, according to scientists, men have high levels of testosterone and prone to male-pattern baldness, among other things. When the ring finger is the same length as the index finger, this indicates normal levels of testosterone. This is usually opposite in women. Now researchers believe men with longer ring fingers for their height are prone to suffer depression. The researchers have also found the ratio between the fingers on the right hand may be an indication of a person's sexual orientation. Of course these findings are merely a statistical relationship which means the probability is most men and women do not fit the pattern.

A study published by the British Journal of Cardiology, implied a correlation between the ring and index finger. In males where the ring finger was equal to, or shorter than the index finger this meant they were more prone to heart attacks in later life. This association is well founded since level of male sex hormones has been connected with cardiac behavior. Long ring fingered youths excel at sport, although they might struggle to communicate. Men whose ring finger is roughly the same length as their index finger tend to be poor at sport but are better able to express themselves. Among women, risk-taking and assertiveness are linked to a relatively long ring finger. A tendency to throw caution to the wind, coupled with relatively poor communication skills, may also be found among women with this shaped hand. Women with roughly equal ring and index fingers could tend towards being neurotic with an aversion to risk and low assertiveness, but are linked to good communication skills. Links between finger length and breast cancer, autism, dyslexia and fertility were also found. The middle finger shows how responsible people are and whether their attitude toward life is serious or carefree. A long middle finger indicates a very responsible person and sometimes a lonely individual. More relaxed people have short middle fingers and share a fun-loving approach to life. Medium-length middle fingers are seen in the well balanced.


While we are on strange but true foot or shoe size could be a reliable indicator of how long we will live. Two consecutive studies in 1997 and 1999, were conducted by a team of orthopaedic surgeons, in Umea, Sweden. When the researchers found a strong correlation between foot size and life span they were so incredulous they conducted a follow-up study with even a larger group. The findings confirmed those of the original study. While the foot/shoe sizes found no direct correlation with any particular diseases or causes of death, the link to life span was consistent and definite. Shoe width played no role in the findings. Persons with half sizes fell generally in the longevity ranges predicted for the next larger sizes. Interestingly, the longer life spans belong to men and women in the middle size ranges-sizes 6 and 7 for women, 10 to 12 for men.

Reviewed 26/02/2016

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Paraphilia and paraphilic related disorders

Paraphilia means love (philia) beyond the usual (para). The condition of paraphilia exists when a person’s sexual arousal and gratification depend on fantasizing about and engaging in sexual behaviour that is atypical and extreme. Paraphilic behaviours revolve around particular objects or around particular acts. Two examples would be inflicting pain (sadism), or publically exposing genitalia (exhibitionism).

In legal parlance, paraphilia represents a perversion or deviancy; in common vernacular, this is referred to as kinky or bizarre sex. The American Psychiatric Association, (1994) consider those who suffer from paraphilia have several behavioural characteristics in common. They are recurrent, fixed, compulsive, sexually motivated, and personally or socially maladaptive, and interfere with capacity for reciprocal affection. To comply with this definition these behaviours should have been an established pattern for no less than six months’ duration. Sexual acts are only considered paraphiliac if the person’s internal experience matches these criteria (Love, 1990). A second aspect of paraphilia pertains to the object to which the person is attracted too. For example, a podophile would be attracted to feet and a restifist, shoes. A third aspect of paraphilia involves compulsion and its aspects that make self-control of undesirable behaviour difficult.

The neuro-transmitter, which stimulates compulsive behaviour, is glucocorticoid and is normally triggered when the individual becomes excited. The function of the neuro-transmitter appears to help focus on the stimulus and will remain until the person can conquer it, resolve it, or are out of danger. Provided some type of arousal surrounds the object the release of glucocoticoid increases compulsive behaviour and makes a return to normal routine very difficult. A fourth aspect of paraphilia relates to loss of compensation. Experts believe the brain creates pain and anxiety to ensure the body is provided with certain items needed for survival. In return the body produces opiates that trigger a pleasure response. Under certain circumstance the brain may compensate when the simple primal needs are lost or restricted. Instead the brain will use another need and use it as a source of pleasure. Eating disorders are thought, by many, to be a compensating measure when the brain releases opiates to gratify the action. Symptoms of depression may develop in individuals with paraphilia and are often accompanied by an increase in the frequency and intensity of the paraphiliac behaviour. Anything that has the potential to cause fear or anger can be utilized by some people to induce passion or sexual arousal. Passion, like other forms of emotion, produces adrenalin (epinephrine) which leads to the production of other neuro-transmitters.

Factors, which appear to determine how this stimulus is perceived and acted upon, relate to an individual's judgement of these circumstances or sex appeal of the other person. Change in body chemistry may cause things such as avoidance behaviour, an increase in heart rate, oxygen intake, and blood pressure; all of the responses needed to flight or fight (and sex). Anxiety and distress are thought by many to be the initial driving force behind the need to seek pleasure or gratification. It appears during infancy or early childhood, at a primitive learning level, certain individuals discover pleasure and gratification as a coping mechanism to deal with stress, and that, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) helps to establish the paraphilia or paraphilic related disorder.

It is generally thought paraphilias and paraphilia related disorders are more clinically prevalent than most clinicians suspect. These disorders are cloaked in shame and guilt and it is unlikely clients will encourage conversation about their particular fetish. Paraphiliac behaviour is more common in men than women. The focus on a paraphiliac is usually very specific and unchanging. This may explain the difference between a foot fetishist or podophile and a shoe fetishist or retifist.

Paraphilia may be classified into two pathological categories. In severe cases the essential features of a paraphilic are recurrent intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges or behaviours generally involving:
1) non-human objects,
2) the suffering or humiliation of oneself or one's partner, or
3) children or other non-consenting persons.

In less severe states the behaviour, sexual urges, or fantasies cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational or other relevant areas of functioning.

Paraphila types are distinguished by the preoccupation with the object or behaviour to the point of being dependent on that object or behaviour for sexual gratification. Unless the person fantasises about the paraphilia at the same time they loose their arousal or satisfaction potential.

According to Money (1984), the majority of paraphilias were wrongly classified into eight types based on forensic history rather than by pathology and therapeutic need. The rationale for defining paraphilias as crimes instead of illness derives from the philosophy of the Inquisition and demonic possession, for which offenders were burned at the stake. In the eighteenth century this was replaced by degeneracy theory. This theory was first published by Tissot in 1758 and was issued to explain both social and individual ills on the basis of personal responsibility, for the cause of degeneracy was attributed to the loss of vital fluid in masturbation, and also to indulge in concupiscent thoughts and fantasies. After the event of germ theory in 1870s degeneracy theory rapidly became outmoded in most branches of medicine, except in sexual medicine.

Degeneracy theory allows the paraphilic to be held responsible for his condition and hence punishment as a treatment is held justified. He argued heterosexual childplay in childhood lays the foundations for uncomplicated heterosexuality in adulthood.

Money attested every one developed a love map which carries the program of an individual’s erotic fantasies and their corresponding practices. Once formed these remain uniquely personalized. This develops throughout childhood but he postulated interference with an individual's love map development may result in some developing paraphilia. If the love map is interrupted this alters the functioning of the sex organs in genital intercourse. (hypophilic solution). The hyoperphilic solution is one in which the love map, defied defacement so sex organs of the adult are used with exaggerated defiance frequency, and compulsiveness and or with great multiplicity of partners, in pairs or in-groups. Another variation on the love map is not completely defaced but redesigned with detours that include either new elements or relocations of original ones. Relocation may derive from a history of atypical sexual rehearsal play and /or erotosexual experience in childhood. Or they may derive from some other childhood encounter or series of encounters in which the sexual organs become stimulated e.g. seeing a shoe. The erotic fantasies and their practices or animations are programmed in distorted love maps and recognised by others as kinky or bizarre behaviour. Each paraphilia has its own paths on the mental love map which is a strategy for circumventing the individually encountered incompatibility of the sacred and the profane in erotosexualism. Money believed these brain schemata were not complete at birth and required input from social environment. Perper (1985) thought there was an existence of pre figured gestalts of the ideal partner. He suggested these were not encoded in the genes, but were created by a slow development process involving genetic regulation detailed and recognizable image. Bancroft (1989) argued although these concepts may provide a useful framework for thought they are impossible to test scientifically. Many of the early theoretical models describing fetishism developed from the work of the psychoanalysis. Attention has also focused on possible biological mechanisms, ethological explanations, and sociocultural and sociobiological factors. Much remains unknown and understanding still at a limited stage. ( Wise, 1985; Huws, Shubsachs & Taylor, 1991; Stoller, 1986)

Money classified paraphilic lovemaps into six strategies. Developmentally paraphilic imagery constituted a love map that goes awry during the juvenile period of hetrosexual rehearsal play.

Predatory Paraphilias describe those wicked and degenerate ecstasies of the sinful act of lust which is so defiling it can be indulged only if stolen , or taken from the saint by force. In some cases stealing alone takes place as a substitute for genital intercourse. The Sleeping princess syndrome (somnophilia) may involve kissing or intimacy with the feet. When reported to the police this is usually mistaken for attempted rape.

Merchantile Paraphila decribes the wicked and degenerate ecstasy of the sinful act of lust and is the social vice practised only by whores and hustlers for pay. This may appear as a role playing fantasy within domestic sex.

Sacrificial Paraphilia is where one or both of the partners must atone for the wicked and degenerate acts of defiling the saint with ecstatic lust by undergoing an act of penance or sacrifice. Sadomasochistic sacrifice is not always directed at the sex organs. Erotic arousal may arise from afflictions of other parts of the body including the feet. They may be beaten, squeezed, stretched, pierced or cut. In some cases of erotic masochism the first pain produced fades and becomes transformed into sensuous ecstasy. This describes those wicked and degenerate ecstasies of the sinful act of lust which is so defiling it can be indulged only if stolen, or taken from the saint by force. In some cases stealing alone takes place as a substitute for genital intercourse. The Sleeping princess syndrome (somnophilia) may involve kissing or intimacy with the feet. When reported to the police this is usually mistaken for attempted rape. This describes the wicked and degenerate ecstasy of the sinful act of lust and is the social vice practiced only by whores and hustlers for pay. This may appear as a role playing fantasy within domestic sex.

The Fetish paraphilias describe a compromise made with the saintliness of chastity and abstinence by including in the sexual act a token that symbolises the wickedness and degeneracy of the sinful act of ecstatic lust. The token symbolically permits the partner to remain as if saintly pure and undefiled. The fetish is the sinful agent of exotic and sexual excitement and arousal. Often the fetish item is stolen. The item may be more important than the owner and with transvestites they have to wear the item to perform genitally. If the partner objects he must fantisise he is wearing them in order to perform. Attractions vary but may include rubber fetish combines feel and smell. Shoes are often sought after and frequently collected, by the fetishist who uses them to obtain sexual arousal. Masturbation commonly accompanies real or imagined contact with the fetish (McGuire, Carlisle and Young, 1965)

Eligibility Paraphilias describe self abandonment to the wicked and degenerate ecstasy of the sinful act can be achieved only if the partner qualifies as something different i.e. from a different religion, race or creed. Nacrophilia would represent a special niche attraction. Body tattoos may attract and in some cases stigmatoghilia (erotic piercing) is the attraction. In severe case the attraction is to mutilation or surgical amputation. Erotic turn on is to the stump. In very rare cases people may be turned on by getting amputation (apotemnophlia) Cases have been reported where people have staged managed an injury to ensure a professional amputation is undertaken in a hospital.

Once a paraphilia is lodged in the brain it becomes like an addiction and difficult to dislodge. Many paraphilic men are able to have several ejaculations (hyperorgasmia) as many as ten on a daily basis. Paraphilias appear more frequently in males which may relate to the gender specific reliance on visual stimuli favoured by males. Females are more dependent of skin feelings for erotic excitation. Love maps enter the brain through vision, rather than through sound. Early childhood appears a vital time for the love map development.

Reviewed 11/02/2016

Friday, February 5, 2016

Foot fetishism & shoe restifism

Women's feet were a symbol of chastity in Roman times and were worshiped by fetishists. Senator Lucius Vitellius kept his mistress’s shoe of under his tunic and would remove and kiss it frequently. This type of fetishism, according to Ovid in Ars Amandi, led Roman women to confine their feet into tiny shoes.

Freud thought the foot had phallic implications and shoes were vaginas, so even the simple slipping on a shoe was a psycho-sexual event. This symbolism intensified from the 1800s although it is difficult to say why this phenomenon came about. I believe Victorian values with the inevitable acceptance to cover up may have influenced but industrialization and urbanization certainly played their part.

As the song goes "a glimpse of stocking was something shocking", fashions have leaned heavily on subtle nuances to convey hidden and often heavy social agenda. Fashion historian James Laver (1969) described the erotic principle applied when body coverings which partially concealed body parts could in themselves become objects of affection. Foot coverings and shoes lend themselves nicely to this type of masquerade. Traditionally footwear was designed for men’s' pleasure which only reinforces male dominance and vested interests in continuation of the status quo.

An example of this can be seen in the romantic fashions of the nineteenth century. Like Bo Peep the fashion was for hooped crinoline dresses. With each step, hems rose and fell which could expose in an unguarded moment a tantalising glimpse of the foot and ankle. Thought too distracting for mere males, moral code determined the adoption of the boot which laced to the mid-calf.

Boots were made from silk, fabric or kid leather. Of course this had the opposite effect and rather than detract from impure thoughts it became the focus of men’s' sexual fantasy. The idea of long legs has an appeal to both sexes. An enhanced body contour, stiffly bound in leather has considerable allure and attractiveness. The thought of putting them on and more importantly taking them off, is for some people quite overpowering.

Shoes started to take on sexual interest in the 20 Century, part of a postmodern movement, first by emphasizing the contours of the leg through the increased use of high heels and secondly the shoes becoming increasingly feminine and therefore tempting. Many restifists (shoe fetishists) are made aware of their attraction to women's shoes when, as young children, they innocently witness their sisters and other female members of the family, dressing. When you think it is after all perfectly natural to have countless fittings before special occasions such school balls and weddings. The female preparation in these circumstances is far more complex and intimate than their male counterparts. These sessions would hold strong erotic attraction for any sensitive male. Shoes are, of course, the piece de resistance and can only be appreciated at the end of the fitting sessions. Usually viewed with accessory clothing held provocatively, under these circumstances some men, such as cross dressers are just compelled to wear women’s shoes. Terms like feeling sexy, appearing attractive to others, and exuding power in stature are popular reasons for the habit. Some men love the sound high heeled shoes make and others revel in the different materials they are made from. Most wearers insist it is the comfort of the style which draws them to women's shoes and not the idea of the shoe as a sex toy. Always reassuring to know that.

People can also have sock or stocking fetishism. Most are males but there are some female sock/stocking fetishists. The habit is often associated with an auto-erotic asphyxia fixation which is obviously sexually driven. Socks/stockings need to have some specific attraction to the person such as a special colours, shape or smell. People with sock fixation invariably view shoes as just shoes.

Paraphilias describe arousal in response to sexual objects or situations that are not part of the normal arousal-activity patterns and in varying degrees may interfere with the capacity for reciprocal, affectionate sexual activity. Fetishism has been defined as a condition which exists "when non-living objects of specific parts of the body are the preferred source of sexual excitement" (Kelly & Byrne, 1992).

The French psychologist Alfred Binet (1857–1911) was the first to describe fetishism in 1887. Binet's other claim to fame was with fellow psychologist Théodore Simon devised a series of tests of human intelligence that, with revisions, came into wide use in schools, industry, and the army. According to Binet, fetishism is caused by certain experiences in early childhood, where the later fetish has an unusual emotional impact. Most authorities believe the pathological imprinting caused by the early childhood experience must also be accompanied by a predisposition for the event to result in fetishism. Research seems to indicate the precursor is a neurological anomaly. Some people believe people who develop abnormal sexual patterns tend to have experienced a more restrictive upbringing. Usually this is in conjunction with being brought up to think of genital feeling as forbidden, or naughty, and certainly unmentionable. The foot is the most common and persistent phallic symbol of the human anatomy.

Transvestism is thought to be a different kind of fetishism which involves three components; autogynephilia (gynephilia is an erotic preference for physically mature women and the transvestite is erotically interested in himself with fantasised female genitalia and breasts; the fetishism connected to female objects; and women as a kind of erotic target. Transvestism and heterosexual trans-sexualism appear to be closely related. Fetishism is said to work by replacing the human partner to various degrees so that the fetish object stands for or signifies a particular partner of class of partners. Of all the forms of erotic symbolism the most frequent is that which idolises the foot and the shoe (Ellis, 1920). Many foot fetishists, hetro, homo and bisexuals integrate their preference for feet and shoes into their stable and less intimate relations. Indeed, relationships often involve fetishistic and non fetishistic behaviours.

Reviewed 6/02/2016

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

The vomeronasal organ: Sexy sweat

According to Michael Stoddart, a zoologist from Tasmania, the artist fascination with the uplifted arm many have its origins in the early stages of human evolution when odour of the armpit was a way of attracting and keeping a mate. Like the naked foot the uplifted arm is an artistic device which allows artists to stimulate a piece of the human psyche which unconsciously recalls primal attraction. The human brain is thought to retain ancient instincts deep in the subconscious. The distinct human ability to produce smells at the axilla is known to start at puberty. Once a key feature for bonding partners these are a relic of our evolution. Scientists have identified similar chemical compounds within the sweat to those already known to play part in the sexual attraction of pigs.

“As the spirits of certain people hover over music,
Mine, O my love, swims upon your perfume.”

The immortal words of French poet Charles Baudelaire (1821 - 1867) who believed people souls were found in erotic sweat. Human sweat has long been a secret ingredient in love potions and the aphrodisiac effect of body pheromones is well documented.

King, Henry III (1574-1589), the French king was attending the betrothal feast of the King of Navarre and Margaret of Valois when he accidentally dried his face with a garment of Maria of Cleves. This was moist with her perspiration and the King took an immediate attraction to her. Although she was the bride of the Prince of Conde, that did not stop the King from having his way. Henry III was a cross dresser.

In Shakespear’s day, men were thought to keep pieces of fruit in their codpiece and gave a nibble to their favoured lady friends. Women were no better and tucked a bit of peeled apple under their arm. Once drenched in sweat they too would offer the love apple to a suitor as a smelly treat. The well-travelled apple absorbed the secretion of the crutch and based on pheromone theory, these tasteless additions to the fruit would enter the bloodstream through the gut and have the same effects on the brains as if sniffing it directly.

The carrying of handkerchiefs during the nineteenth century was commonplace at grand balls. In both Greece and the Balkans it was customary for men to exercise the handkerchief code by trap their handkerchief under their armpits and by way of an invitation to dance, ladies were presented with a handkerchief. One report published in the psychological literature of the nineteenth century described a young Austrian gigolo who tucked his handkerchief into his armpit before going to the dance. He kept it there whilst dancing and whenever his female companion became overheated he offer her his handkerchief. Although it was perceived as a thoughtful gesture it was more than likely to have a quick sniff, after the lady had gone home. By Victorian times well bred young women held their handkerchiefs under their armpit whilst dancing. Then the girls favoured their partner at the end of the evening by gifting them their sweat soaked, handkerchief. Research today would confirm axillary odour contains enough chemical differences in the odour profile to allow for discrimination between individuals. Other independent studies have also shown women prefer male odours that have a Human Leucocyte Antigen type different from their own as this can affect the length of the menstrual cycle. By the end of the nineteenth century it had become the custom for men to hold their handkerchiefs in their palm to prevent touching their partner’s waist. A modern version is found in the Caribbean where sweat soaked patties are cooked and served to the women and men of their dreams.

Napoleon had a strong sense of smell and it is recorded he sent messages to his wife Josephine not to wash because he was coming home. Women in Victorian England earned money by selling handkerchiefs perfumed with perspiration in the same way today Japanese school girls trade their knickers. Freud associated smells were powerful arousal and related them to early pleasures of breast feeding or close contact at the mother’s breast.

In 1986 scientists realized human sweat may contain gas which was scentless but carried chemical messages. These excretions were not the stinky stuff from the apocrine glands, but a scentless sweat from the Eccrine glands. Scientific investigation indicates underarm sweat contains human pheromones. It has long been known the smell (aroma) of some foods can be sexually stimulating for males with cinnamon buns (scrolls), roast meat, and cheese pizza particularly so. Chocolate, vanilla, strawberry and peppermint also increase the blood flow to the pelvic region that matters. It took until 1986 before scientist could prove body odors were linked with fertility matters.

The vomeronasal organ (or Jacobson’s organ) is found in the vomer bone and lies inside the nose above the wall that separates the nostrils. The VNO is a pair of sacs that open into two shallow pits on either side of the nasal septum and its function is to detect distinct chemical compounds and is sensitised to the secretions of odourless sweat glands (Apocrine glands). Deep breaths increase the passage of air and chemicals enter the nose to excite the sensory cells. Up until recently anatomists believed the vomeronasal organ regressed during fetal development (destroyed) with no evidence of a neural connection between the organ and the brain. However new research indicates where a small pit can be found in the nasal septum a functional vomeronasal organ exists. This may explain why some people are more sensitive than others. It has been well documented that women when they live and work in close proximity to each other change their ovulation cycle to coincide. Similarly, when women live in close contact with males the ovulation cycle regulates. Scientists believe it is the odorless scent from the male underarm which is responsible upholds this as proof of the function of the VNO. Odours are absorbed by the olfactory bulbs at the roof of the nasal cavities. These in turn are linked to the limbic region of the brain, which controls emotions, including lust. When the body send out chemical messages, excitement and stress cause more cholesterol excretions and these convert to hormones like progesterone, testosterone, and aldosterone.

The vomeronasal organ does not respond to any other scents but some scientists believe it specifically picks up on pheromones and distributes them to the brain. Exposure to pheromones effects skin temperature, and brain activity, some with an immediate response, while others induce long-term changes in behavioural or endocrine states. Pheromones effect the autonomic nervous system, producing a "relaxation response," opposite to the fight or flight reaction. Some pheromones work better for males, while others work only for females. Many authorities believe the appreciation for pheromones was lost because we evolved in clans, and our primary dependence on vision overtook the scent of pheromones. The fifth cranial nerve connects the nasal mucous membrane and the genitals and boys are growing through changes at puberty their voice changes because of the branching of the nerve complex to the voice box. In some male’s irritation of the nasal mucosa, such as a sneeze, will cause congestion and an erection pops up. The reverse is also true and irritation to the naughty bits will cause congestion of the face resulting in teeth gritting. Science tells us women are more likely to use smell to decide whether or not they will go through with a sexual encounter. But before you get out your bottles of musk (the smell of testosterone) and after shave, the lady is more likely to be turned off, than turned on by certain smells.

Never one to miss a commercial opportunity the cosmetic industry has developed a new range of products which attempt to exploit the possible applications of VNO. Chemists have isolated androstanol in human sweat this is also found in male pigs and one sniff turns the sow turns the sow into a sexual frenzy, the hope is the same will happen to humans. The problem is the androstanol used in the aftershave is pig androstanol which is species specific. So if you want to turn a female pig on, that’s the stuff for you.


Toe sucking is associated with fellatio and both actions ensure the VNO is in close contact with the excretion the apocrine glands of the foot and groin respectively. Similarly licking and kissing in-between the toes like cullingus assures close contact with the odourless sweat.

Schultz C & the editors of the Old Farmer’s Almanac 1996 The book of love: The old farmer’s almanac looks at romance, sex and marriage New York: Gramercy Books.

Reviewed 21/01/2016