Sexpert Q&A: Sniffing Out Your Mate

Yvonne, I know no one should go more than a day without washing, but isn't this a little bit incredible about scent?? I just can't believe this has anything to do with finding the right partner/lover. What do you say? -Gary

Dear Gary, Research shows time and time again that we are biologically programmed to sniff out our mate - at least the right match reproductively speaking. This is because we want to find that person whose immune system is opposite our own. According to a 1991 Harvard study, the human vomeronasal system, or "6th sense," does exist. We're not sure how pheromones work exactly, but, based on numerous studies, they're thought to influence mating, bonding, and caring for offspring. These scented hormones, secreted mostly by sweat glands in the armpits, appear to result in a "love at first sniff" since there's a direct connection between your olfactory bulb at the top of your nose and the septal nucleus of the brain (erection center). This makes for healthier offspring. Thus, research has found that women pick mates, or prefer the smell of males, whose immune systems are opposite their own. Research on men has also found that they sniff out the women whose ovulation cues can be subconsciously sniffed out through their body odor.

Dr. Yvonne KristAn Fulbright is a sex educator, relationship expert, columnist and founder of

Sexuality Source Inc.

She is the author of several books including, "Touch Me There! A Hands-On Guide to Your Orgasmic Hot Spots."