Losing ability to smell could signal greater risk of death

New research has found that losing your ability to smell could signal a greater risk of death.

US scientists made the link after carrying out a study in which they tested 3000 people aged between 57 and 85 with various different scents.

According to the study report, published in health journal PLOS One, 39 percent of those who failed the smell test died five years later.

The research deemed one in ten to have a ‘healthy’ sense of smell, after identifying close to every one of the selected scents, which included rose, peppermint, fish and leather.

The lead author of the report, Dr Jayant Pinto, clarified the findings of the study to Reuters, explaining: “It doesn’t directly cause death, but it’s a harbinger, an early warning that something has gone badly wrong.”

“Compared to a person with a normal sense of smell, a person with an absent sense of smell has three times greater risk of dying within a five-year span," he said.

Dr Jayant also added that he and his team intend to investigate their interesting findings further.