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Meaning of Color

Psychological associations of different colors.


The eye uses more chemicals to see the color yellow than to see any other. School studies have shown that students who take tests in yellow rooms actually do 10-15% better on than they do in rooms painted in other colors. On the other hand, babies cry longer and more often in rooms that are painted yellow, and the color is avoided in convalescent homes because it tends to affect minor motor movements. 


Blue is associated with trustworthiness and confidence. Physiologically, blue stimulates the brain to produce eleven different natural tranquilizers, confirming its reputation for making you calmer. Studies into the effects of the color blue have presented some interesting contradictory findings. In one study, weight lifters consistently were able to lift more weight in a room with blue walls. Other studies have shown that people on production lines are more productive when the walls are painted blue, and that students are more able to focus and concentrate on their work in a blue room.


Orange has been related to lifting depression. Physiologically, it seems to stimulate the sexual organs (remember that next time you dress for a date!), and emotionally, it is associated with feelings of happiness and well-being. Like yellow, it seems to stimulate happiness and make you feel better all around.


Green is the most common color used for financial ledgers because it is more soothing to the eyes than pure white. There are also some studies that suggest that green may improve reading speed and comprehension. Green is widely used in institutional settings because research shows that the color is soothing. In fact, a recent study carried out at the University of Georgia on the effects of color on the emotions found that 95% of the students surveyed associated green with positive emotions.

Use of Color

There are also some interesting findings in the use of color in medicine. Since the 1980s, doctors have used blue light to treat neonatal jaundice, and in 1990, scientists reported that blue light had been used to successfully treat addictions, depression and impotence. Red light is being used in photodynamic therapy to destroy cancer cells. It also stimulates the muscles, and is being used to increase performance in some athletes, while blue light seems to enhance performance where steady strength is needed.

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