A very important aspect of our visual experience is color. the nervous impulses of the color channel don't only go to the brain. Some pulses travel to the pituitary and pineal glands through the hypothalamus It
is logical to assume that what we see, especially color, can affect the systems of the body. Psychologists and physiologists belive this to be true and are nvestigating exactly what each color can do to our bodies.
Physiological Effect: Red has been shown to increase blood pressure and stimulate the adrenal glands. The stimulation of the adrenals glands helps us become strong and increases our
stamina. Pink, a lighter shade of red, helps muscles relax.
Psychological Effect: While red has proven to be a color of vitality and ambition it has been shown to be associated with anger. Sometimes red can be useful in dispelling negative thoughts, but it can also make one irritable. Pink has the
opposite effect of red. Pink induces feelings of calm, protection, warmth and
nurture. This color can be used to lessen irritation and aggression as it is
connected with feelings of love. Red is sometimes associated with sexuality,
whereas pink is associated with unselfish love.
The most emotionally intense color, red stimulates a faster heartbeat and breathing. It is also the color of love. Red clothing gets noticed and makes the wearer appear heavier. Since it is an extreme color, red
clothing might not help people in negotiations or confrontations. Red cars are
popular targets for thieves. In decorating, red is usually used as an accent.
Decorators say that red furniture should be perfect since it will attract
Physiological Effect: Orange has proven to be a stimulus of the sexual organs. Also, it can be benefitial to the digestive system and can strengthen the immune system.
Psychological Effect: Orange has shown to have only positive affects on your emotional state. This color relieves feelings of self-pity, lack of self-worth and unwillingness to forgive. Orange opens your emotions and is a terrific antidepressant.
Physiological Effect: Yellow has proven to stimulate the brain. This stimulation can make you more alert and decisive. This color makes muscles more energetic and activates the lymph system.
Psychological Effect: Similarly to Orange, Yellow is a happy and uplifting color. It can also be associated with intellectual thinking:
discernment, memory, clear thinking, decision-making and good judgment. Also
aiding organization, understanding of different points of view. Yellow builds
self-confidence and encourages optimism. However, a dull yellow can bring on
feelings of fear.
Cheerful sunny yellow is an attention getter. While it is considered an optimistic color, people lose their tempers more often in yellow rooms, and babies will cry more. It is the most difficult color for the eye to
take in, so it can be overpowering if overused. Yellow enhances concentration,
hence its use for legal pads. It also speeds metabolism.
Physiological Effect: Green is said to be good for you heart. On a physical and emotional, green helps your heart bring you physical equilibrium and relaxation. Green relaxes our muscles and helps us breathe deeper and slower.
Psychological Effect: Green creates feelings of comfort, laziness, relaxation, calmness. It helps us balance and soothe our emotions. Some attribute this to its connection with nature and our natural feelings of affiliation with the
natural world when experiencing the color green. Yet, darker and grayer greens
can have the opposite effect. These olive green colors remind us of decay and
death and can actually have a detrimental effect on physical and emotional
health. Note that sickened cartoon characters always turned green.
Currently the most popular decorating color, green symbolizes nature. It is the easiest color on the eye and can improve vision. It is a calming, refreshing color. People waiting to appear on TV sit in
"green rooms" to relax. Hospitals often use green because it relaxes
patients. Brides in the Middle Ages wore green to symbolize fertility. Dark
green is masculine, conservative, and implies wealth. However, seamstresses
often refuse to use green thread on the eve of a fashion show for fear it will
bring bad luck.
Physiological Effect: In contrast to red, blue proves to lower blood pressure. Blue can be linked to the throat and thyroid gland. Blue also has a very cooling and soothing affect, often making us calmer. Deep blue stimulates the
pituitary gland, which then regulates our sleep patterns. This deeper blue also
has proved to help the skeletal structure in keeping bone marrow healthy.
Psychological Effect: We usually associate the color blue with the night and thus we feel relaxed and calmed. Lighter blues make us feel quite and away from the rush of the day. These colors can be useful in eliminating insomnia. Like
yellow, blue inspires mental control, clarity and creativity. However, too much
dark blue can be depressing.
Physiological Effect: Violet has shown to alleviate conditions such as sunburn due to its purifying and antiseptic effect. This color also suppresses hunger and balances the body's metabolism. Indigo, a lighter purple, has been used by
doctors in Texas as an anesthesia in minor operations because its
narcotic <"A soothing or numbing agent.">qualities
Psychological Effect: Purples have been used in the care of mental of nervous disorders because they have shown to help balance the mind and transform obsessions and fears. Indigo is often associated with the right side of the
brain; stimulating intuition and imagination. Violet is associated with
bringing peace and combating shock and fear. Violet has a cleansing effect with
emotional disturbances. Also, this color is related to sensitivity to beauty,
high ideals and stimulates creativity, spirituality and compassion. Psychic
power and protection has also been associated with violet.
Psychological Effect: Brown is the color of the earth and ultimately home. This color brings feelings of stability and security. Sometimes brown can also be associated with withholding emotion and retreating from the world.
while dark brown is similar to wood or leather. Brown can also be sad and
wistful. Men are more apt to say brown is one of their favorite colors
Black Psychological Effect: While comforting and protective, black is mysterious and associated with silence
and sometimes death. Black is passive and can prevent us from growing and
changing.Black is the color of authority and power. It is popular in
fashion because it makes people appear thinner. It is also stylish and
timeless. Black also implies submission. Priests wear black to signify
submission to God. Some fashion experts say a woman wearing black implies
submission to men. Black outfits can also be overpowering, or make the wearer
seem aloof or evil. Villains, such as Dracula,
often wear black.
Psychological Effect: White is the color of ultimate purity. This color brings feelings of peace and comfort while it dispels shock and despair. White can be used to give yourself a feeling of freedom and uncluttered openness. Too much
white can give feelings of separation and can be cold and isolation.Brides wear white to symbolize innocence and purity. White
reflects light and is considered a summer color. White is popular in decorating
and in fashion because it is light, neutral, and goes with everything. However,
white shows dirt and is therefore more difficult to keep clean than other
colors. Doctors and nurses wear white to imply sterility.
Psychological Effect:Gray is the color of independence and self-reliance, although usually thought of as a negative color. It can be the color of evasion and non-commitment (since
it is neither black nor white.) Gray indicates separation, lack of
involvement and ultimately loneliness.
Test Colors in Your Life:
The world seems to be slowly
accepting the idea that colors can affect our bodies and our moods. Yet, it is
often found that when someone is told how a certain color affects them they are
able to counteract such feelings by a sheer will to disbelieve. Try to make
note in your life how color do affect your moods and your physical condition.
Does you have a favorite shirt have a certain affect on you because of its
color? Do you wear that shirt because of its effect on your emotions? Do not
force yourself to accept the conditions given above, yet notice when such
conditions do apply in your life.