How Color Affects Us


syn_sensory-inputThe Language of Color

Did you know that color has a language all of its own?  Color has a profound effect on the mind and behavior and body.  All color is energy and it has a physical effect on us.  The reactions to color can be predicted with startling accuracy.  Depending on our personality type, there is a potential effect towards positive or negative psychologically.

This question pertains to the condition known as synesthesia. This condition describes how our senses work together. For example – with respect to sight, taste and smell – seeing a color may evoke any number of other sensations.  Color plays a multitude of roles in the natural world, used to entice, to camouflage, or to warn other creatures. Colors signal harvest time, breeding conditions, and the change of seasons, from the first greens of spring to the brilliant, beautiful reds and browns of the fall.  Each sense has a pathway to the brain.  These paths are parallel to each other as you can see from the illustration.  Flavonoids are incredible sensory chemicals.  Just as flavonoids are not just for the attraction of insects, they also send signals to us.  Green may bring strong images or memories of the smell of grass, lemon yellow may recall a sour taste. Pink may convey sweetness and so on.

In this series, we will explore the effects that color has on us and how each sense and its pathway to the brain is involved and interconnected and how it communicates messages to us on a psychological and physical level.

On a psychological level – brain-happy-chemicalsColor plays a vitally important role in the world in which we live. Color can sway thinking, change actions, and cause reactions. It can irritate or soothe your eyes, raise your blood pressure or suppress your appetite. When used in the right ways, color can even save on energy consumption.  As a powerful form of communication, color is irreplaceable. Red means “stop” and green means “go.”  Brain chemistry is only now being understood to a greater level.  There is a dance of neurotransmitters and hormones inside your body determine the bulk of your moods and personal satisfaction. As a society we’ve gradually shut down the production of these substances with our diet and lifestyle choices. The result has been a dramatic increase in depression, eating disorders, suicide rates, substance abuse, and general unhappiness that affects every part of your daily life.

On a physical level:  1a361f64fb6e97b67f2ad8f1853efd0aHave you noticed the central role food plays in your life? From the time we are born, we develop a deep association linking food with emotions.  We move through life linking food to emotions. We celebrate holidays, weddings, graduations, and promotions with food.  We use food to express, suppress, and deal with love and we drown our sorrows and many other emotions. Food powers your life. It fuels all bodily processes that enables you to move, think, and breathe. There is no aspect of your life that is not influenced by what you eat.  Consider how strength, agility, coordination, endurance, speed and level of performance are all powered by the foods you eat. Natural food gives natural energy.  What you eat determines how you tackle your daily physical activities, including housework, your job, school, homework, shopping, caring for a family and exercise.  Eating healthy enables body movements to be executed with ease. A poor diet with unhealthy food choices can make each movement a major effort filled with stress, strain, and pain.  Which lifestyle sounds like the way you would like to live?  It isn’t easy to change the habits of lifestyle.  We sometimes need help.  Jumpstart your health with a good supplement of your choice.  Just make sure it is a good, reliable brand.

Color Affects Taste and Smell.  Nature has a clever way to highlight the nutrients in foods: different nutrients actually impart different colors to the foods they’re in and as they ripen they produce a scent.  Just the sight of food fires neurons in the hypothalamus, the front part of the brain that coordinates both the autonomic nervous system and the activity of the pituitary, controlling body temperature, thirst, hunger, and other homeostatic systems, and involved in sleep and emotional activity.  If you ask my daughter, my shopping partner, how she would describe her grocery shopping experience with me, she would probably elaborate on my attention given to this one small area of the store with all of the brilliant colors in the fruits and vegetables in the produce section.  I spend most of my time there salivating with excitement on the experience I will have in eating these bright-colored foods.  The sense of life drops considerably when proceeding to the other areas of the store.  Are you drawn to certain colored foods?   

Pigmentation in Plants th-10

In plants, these substances provide pigmentation and help filter UV rays. They also help protect the plants from microbe, fungus, and insect attacks; and help plants survive frost and droughts. Additionally, they help promote or inhibit the growth of certain plant parts, including seeds and pollen tubes, and are used as chemical signals to tell plant cells when to stop or start doing things.  Flavonoids are a group of plant metabolites thought to provide health benefits through cell signalling pathways and antioxidant effects.  They are essential pigments for producing the colors needed to attract pollinating insects.  These biological pigments are pigments produced by living organisms. They can be found in many plants, including flowers and even in our skinBacteria are colored by pigments. All biological pigments selectively absorb certain wavelengths of light while reflecting others.

Color arises frcb44cdb9ab9c2fe681a397607b3e5c17om the way the pigments react with light.  Biological pigments in plants exist in a wide variety of forms, some with highly complex and large structures. Over 600 naturally occurring carotenoid structures have been identified, as well as over 7,000 flavonoids, including over 500 anthocyanins.

I am excited to raise a whole new appreciation for our colorful world and all of its bounty and benefits.  All color comes from light.  Consider where the light comes from.  From the word of this light, all of creation and its beauty was made.  Genesis 1:3, 31 says. “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light…31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.”
Sources:

  1. Color Matters
  2. Causes of Color
  3. Daily Super Food Love
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