Dietary Omega-6 fatty acid is responsible for the bodies ability to mount a lifesaving inflammatory response when needed. This includes spiking a fever to kill off bacterial and viral infections, swelling to protect bones, and clotting to prevent us from bleeding to death.
Biologist have now discovered that the smell of death or injury that repels living beings has been identified as Omega-6 linoleic acid. A biology professor at McMaster University, David Rollo, found that corpses all emit the same death stench produced by this fatty acid.
Dr. Rollo suggests that recognizing and avoiding the dead could reduce the chances of catching the disease, or allow you to get away with just enough exposure to activate your inate immunity.
He also suggests that linoleic acid is reliable and quickly released from cells following death. Evolution appears to have favoured such clues because they were reliable associated with demise, and avoiding contagion and predation are rather critical to survival.
I am always in awe of the the brilliant way the body uses nutrients.