Sometimes there are positive stories that are season specific that just help to make you feel a little bit better – and this is one such article for people who love fall and pumpkins. People have long associated fall with pumpkins, and marketers have been reinforcing that connection for years. The smell of pumpkin spice has been tied with happy memories, creating a close association between the flavor and happiness or positive experiences. It’s similar to how the smell of chlorine is often associated with positive swimming experiences.
The smell of pumpkin spice isn’t really about the pumpkins, but the smells that we associate with the time of the year. Autumnal spices include nutmeg and cinnamon, so the term pumpkin spice isn’t actually correct. The reason that we have a stronger reaction to the term is because of the way marketers have used it to tie our memories to the flavors that are associated with fall. The words have become so heavily associated with fall that just tied together activates a part of our brain associated with smells. These spices do have some connection with other parts of the year, especially ginger which is typically tied to winter holidays. However, our minds aren’t as accurate at processing smells, while our interpretation of language is much more evolved. The words trigger the thoughts of the smells, and that can be enough to make us think of smells, and then associate that with a particular time of year.
The idea of pumpkin spice is just as effective as actually smelling something similar to the many different types of products labelled as pumpkin spice. Regardless of what the actual scent is, it creates a positive feeling, and that can be beneficial to a person’s health.
The article ends with a recipe so that you can make your own pumpkin spice product at home. Whether you want your own low cost latte or a special desert, you can check out Pumpkins Spice Really Does Give You the Warm Fuzzies – Here’s the Science of Why to see how you can make your own autumnal treat.