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Ear to the Ground

Grandpa Actually Smells Pretty Good

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Posted on Jun 2, 2012
pedrosimoes7 (CC BY 2.0)

After having volunteers at all stages of adulthood sweat into armpit pads for five nights, researchers determined that the elderly—long stigmatized for smelling worse than the rest of us—emitted a more pleasant odor than other age groups. 

Middle-aged men were found to smell the worst. One researcher said : “As you grow older, you smell more and more like a woman.” That’s because of changes in men’s hormone levels as they age. “It’s almost as if you’re going back to what happened before puberty.” —ARK

The Los Angeles Times:

A different group of 41 volunteers was asked to assess the odors in the jars, rating them according to intensity and pleasantness (or unpleasantness).

It turned out that the underarm odor of 75-to-95-year-olds was judged to be less intense and far more pleasant than the scent of either young or middle-aged adults. The most intense — and perhaps not coincidentally, the most unpleasant — odor came from 45-to-55-year-old men. Women in that age group, on the other hand, produced the most pleasant smell of everyone who wore the underarm pads.

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