I was on a good stretch of going to the gym after work, every weeknight, eating a healthy dinner, no snacks before bed. I even hit a hot yoga class on Sunday morning. Then all it took was a saunter past a neighborhood bakery on Monday afternoon and I was elbows deep in chocolate chip almond butter cookies. And I ate them all!
To say the smell of fresh baked cookies has a deep and profound affect on me would be an understatement. I go bonkers hungry when I smell cookies to the point where I imagine myself sprouting blue Cookie Monster fluff in Pavlovian response to their sweet, carby scent. Your delicious food smell might differ from mine, but there’s no argument that scent can make you go weak at the knees with temptation…
Food cravings and smell go hand in hand. So much so that Dr. Alan Hirsch, researcher at Chicago’s Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation claims that food marketers use this technique to synthesize the smell of products in and around stores. What, you don’t believe him? I dare all the cinnamon bun lovers out there to walk past a Cinnabon and hold their composure.
According to Dr. Hirsch, by “pumping in the smell to induce cravings…you salivate just imagining eating that cookies fresh out of the oven.” He points to companies like ScentAir, who artificially duplicate the smell of tempting food products like those cinnamon buns, burgers, popcorn, and even ice cream and waffle cones using “aroma marketing” for restaurants like 7-Eleven and McDonalds.