QUESTION OF THE WEEK: I’m wondering if there is any “scientific proof ” for feng shui. It’s hard for me to believe it actually works.

Well, there’s a field of design called “neuro-architecture,” which correlates closely with feng shui. Neuro-architecture is the study of how architecture affects human experience. Here are some results of neuro-architectural studies that support feng shui concepts.

Your decor needs to ‘feed’ you


Although feng shui promotes a clutter-free environment, it also maintains that the things in your home should have personal meaning. Neuro-architecture reinforces this premise by showing that a home filled with personal objects feeds the brain in a positive way.

‘Hugs’ in the environment

In feng shui, we strive to create “hugs” by rounding out the corners of the room — angling furniture, placing a plant or positioning a lamp in the corners — making people in the room feel more nurtured. Neuro-architecture also suggests using curves, inasmuch as they help to nurture contentment and well-being based on the softening of your peripheral vision.

The power position

A main feng shui concept has to do with positioning. Situating yourself so that you can see all the activity in the room is considered a de-stressor. In the kitchen, this would suggest that it is preferable to cook at a stove where you can see the activity around you.


Neuro-architecture studies show that the “sweet spot” for the stove is a location where you can cook while looking at others in the room. Studies also reveal when you are at the stove with your back to the noise and activity, your brain is more likely to produce adrenaline and cortisol, hormones associated with anxiety. However, when you face into the heart of the room and can see what is going on, you feel safer and more in control.

Having your own space

In feng shui, the balance of privacy in a home is important, so be certain that everyone has his or her own inviolate “space.” Neuro-architecture shows through EEG monitoring that a lack of privacy is stressful.

It makes a difference

More scientific studies are “proving” that whether or not we are aware of it, our environment profoundly affects us. If feng shui hasn’t convinced you to make changes, maybe neuro-architecture will inspire you!


Send your questions to Alice at Alice Inoue owns Happiness U. Visit