Isn’t It Romantic? The Science Behind Falling in Love

11:29:00 AM

When it comes to falling in love, most of us choose to follow the heart instead of listening to what your brain has to say about your potential partner. However, today you will discover that the act of falling in love is more related to the brain than you imagined, after all, falling in love, attraction and excitement are chemical responses initiated in the brain.

Isn’t It Romantic? The Science Behind Falling in Love
The 8 Steps of falling in love according to science

1. Falling in love: the chemical response

The first time you saw the love of your life, you must have felt the sweat running on your forehead, the heat rising to the face and a crush on the heart that told you that was love at first sight. All these reactions occur thanks to a chemical response initiated by the brain.

According to psychologists at the Emory University School of Medicine, the first time a person makes eye contact with the man or woman of their dreams in a crowded place, the brain releases three major Chemicals: Dopamine, Oxytocin and opioid.

2. Dopamine: The Arousal Chemical

The famous researcher Helen Fisher dedicated her career to the study of the cerebral response to people who fall passionately in love. In her research, Helen discovered that the main ingredient in the cocktail of love is dopamine, a chemical in the brain that produces feelings of excitement, pleasure, and euphoria, and is also released after having sex or using drugs.

A study published in the National Institute of Health and conducted in both birds and mammals found that romantic attraction is guided by the dopaminergic reward system. Using magnetic resonance imaging, the scientists monitored the excitement, sexual appetite, and passionate motivation of 17 people in love, and found that the attraction to the object of affection is first generated in areas of the brain rich in dopamine and associated with Reward and motivation.

3. Oxytocin: The Cuddle Bug Chemical

Psychologists at Bar-Ilan University in Israel view oxytocin as the "hugging hormone" and the secret to lasting love for a variety of reasons. Oxytocin is the same chemical released by a mother and her child during the bonding period.
However, oxytocin is also released in loving couples. Research published by Psychologist and Professor Ruth Feldman of Bar-Ilan University states that "when couples fall in love, increased levels of oxytocin have reached the highest levels ever found." According to Dr. Feldman, People in the early stages of infancy release 50% more oxytocin than pregnant women.

4. Opiates: The Warm-Fuzzy Chemical

According to psychological research conducted at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, the opiate, the same chemist released from sexual intercourse or drug use, such as heroin, gives us a sense of comfort, warmth, protection and security.
The opiate, along with oxytocin and dopamine, is the final element that triggers the reward system in our brain and leads us toward love with a series of visual, auditory, or olfactory cues.

5. Adrenaline: The Love Struck Chemical

The term "love struck”" can be explained using the neurotransmitter called adrenaline. According to Dr. Reginald Ho of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, feelings of love trigger a stress response, raising levels of adrenaline and cortisol.

For example, while you're waiting for a date with your partner, your heart rate is likely to increase, your hands start to sweat, and your face will turn red like a tomato.

6. Serotonin: The Smitten Chemical

According to Helen Fisher, a researcher who studies the biochemical reactions of love in all its manifestations, it is impossible to forget about serotonin when it comes to a deep love connection.

Fisher claims that this chemical makes the person stay thinking about his lover without paying attention to the rest of the things that surround him. According to a study published by the National Institute of Health of Italy, shows that love has an impact on the serotonin system, whereby the "obsessive-compulsive" thinking about the lover happens to take control of the brain waves.

7. The Law of Attraction

Sure, the “law of attraction” certainly sounds romantic, but organic chemists at the University of Pennsylvania’s Monell Center prefer to measure love quantitatively—linking that rare feeling of love to a reward system in the brain, one that’s specifically wired to draw us to potential mates.

While animals rely on pheromones for mate selection—scientists claim humans depend on a chemical release (of oxytocin, dopamine, and opiates) that enters the body via the nose and activates the amygdala and hypothalamus areas of the brain, which stimulate feelings of emotion, attraction, and sexual arousal to another human.

8. Love is a Drug

analyzing all these data, the comparison of love with a drug or addiction is not so wrong, explains the neuroscientist Dr. Stephanie Ortigue, who in a study on the neuroscience of love determined that this feeling can occur in less than a second.

This phenomenon of "love at first sight" is actually a mixture of chemicals that provoke a sensation of euphoria in the brain that hits us like a crush of Cupid.

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