Browser by Years

Study on the Physiological Effects by the Biochemical Compounds in the Hinoki Cypress Essence

April 26, 2019
Debolina Chanda

Abstract : This study measured physiological signals, such as brain waves and blood pressures, of a group of students before and after they inhaled the essence of Hinoki Cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa), containing terpenoid, the main ingredient of forest bath, which recently has been drawing attention due to its reported effectiveness. In addition to that, psychological tests, such as olfactory sensibility evaluation, as well as short-term memory, concentration, stress, and arousal tests, were likewise conducted in this study.

In summary, when the subjects inhaled the essence of cypress oil, their stresses were reduced and their memory and concentration improved under even working condition as well as under a stable condition. The fragrance, however, more effectively reduced the stress of the female subjects than that of the male subjects.

key words: Chamaecyparis obtusa, concentration, EEG, hinoki cypress, inhalation, , memory, phytoncide, stress


Introduction: The mental pressures and stresses of students brought about by academic demands made them weaken their memory and concentration, thereby depressing their learning faculties. As such, urgent measures must be taken to reduce the mental pressures and stresses of students. Fragrances transmitted to the hippocampus body and the hypophysis in the limbic system in the cerebrum influence the person's emotions, memory, and learning ability.

Thus, this study measured physiological signals, such as brain waves and blood pressures, of a group of students before and after they inhaled the essence of Hinoki Cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa), containing terpenoid, the main ingredient of forest bath, which recently has been drawing attention due to its reported effectiveness. In addition to that, psychological tests, such as olfactory sensibility evaluation, as well as short-term memory, concentration, stress, and arousal tests, were likewise conducted in this study.

For the male subjects, the delta wave was reduced in the T5 and T3 zone, the beta wave was reduced, and the theta wave was increased in the TT2 zone after the inhalation of the fragrance. When the Corsi block tapping task (CBT) was carried out during the inhalation of the fragrance, the alpha wave was significantly increased in the TCP1, CP1, and PO1 zones, and the beta wave was significantly reduced in almost all zones. The psychophysiology was then stabilized.

Moreover, with the reduction of stress and systolic pressure, the increase of short-term memory, and the significant reduction of the error rate, the male subjects' sympathetic nervous systems were stabilized and their memory and concentration were improved by the fragrance's induction of emotions. For the female subjects, the alpha wave was increased in the P3 zone after the inhalation of the  fragrance.

However, the alpha wave was significantly increased in the T3 and PO1 zones when the CBT was conducted during the inhalation of the fragrance whereas the beta wave was significantly reduced in the FP2, F4, T3, CZ, C4, TCP2, T5, and O1 zones. Furthermore, along with the reduction of stress and of the systolic pressure, and the improvement of short-term memory, the psychophysiology and the sympathetic nervous system were stabilized.

In summary, when the subjects inhaled the essence of cypress oil, their stresses were reduced and their memory and concentration improved under even working condition as well as under a stable condition. The fragrance, however, more effectively reduced the stress of the female subjects than that of the male subjects.


References

  1. Aggleton, J.P. 1993. The contribution of the amygdala to normal and abnormal emotional staes. Tresds Neurosci 16:328-335.
  2. Yasutaka, K and S. Wataru, et al. 2001. Frontal midline theta rhythm is correlated with cardiac autonomic activities during the performance of an attention demanding meditation procedure. Cognitive Brain Research 1(11):281-287
  3. Andreassi, J.H. 1995. Psychophysiology: Human behavior and physiolodical response. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  4. Aoshima, H., S.J. Hossain, H. Koda. and Y. Kiso. 2002. Relaxational effects by whiskey aroma. Aroma Research 12(3):327-333.
  5. Harmon-Jones, E. and J.B. Allen. 1997. Behavioral cativation sensitivity and resting frontal EEG asymmetry. J. Abnormal Psychology 106:159-163.
  6. McCarley, R.W., M.E. Shenton, B.F. O'donnell, S.R. Faux, and P.G. Nestor. 1993. Auditory P300 abnormalities and left posterior superior temporal gyrus volume reduction in schixophrenia. Arch. Gen. psychiatry 50:19-197.

 

  • Please email paper@jyem.org the summarized paper.

  • Please email info@jyem.org for the full article.