The scientists observed two sets of mice. One set had lost its sense of smell, and the other set could smell well. Both sets of mice were fed high fat diets. The mice who could smell food, gained weight, while
obese mice who lost their sense of smell also lost weight.
What’s weird, however, is that these slimmed-down but smell-deficient mice ate the same amount of fatty food as mice that retained their sense of smell and ballooned to twice their normal weight.
In addition, mice with a boosted sense of smell — super-smellers — got even fatter on a high-fat diet than did mice with normal smell.
The findings suggest that the odor of what we eat may play an important role in how the body deals with calories. If you can’t smell your food, you may burn it rather than store it.
The scientists say
“Sensory systems play a role in metabolism. Weight gain isn’t purely a measure of the calories taken in; it’s also related to how those calories are perceived,”
so maybe instead of dieting, it might be simpler to wear a clip on one’s nose and not smell food 🙂