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What Is Love?

Posted 02-07-2019 at 02:20 AM by Xploit Machine

Everybody loves. Every single person at some point has that small moment of bliss that changes the rest of their life. And we're not the only ones, even animals have fully monogamous relationships. Look they cuddle and everything. But what exactly is love? Let's finally answer the question that's perplexed scientists for generations. Oh and if you stay long enough I might even tell you how you can make someone love you.

Love is free, it can't be owned, bought or sold. Is has no mass or weight and cannot be touched. Yet it is the single most powerful emotion humans can experience. It makes us do some really ****** stuff sometimes. But it's far more than an emotion, it can physically affect our bodies in some rather incredible ways.

Love is also a powerful pain killer. In fact, cuddling can cure a headache, during a loving embrace the chemical Oxytocin is released in our brains, ovaries and testicles. Research has found that a dose of Oxytocin can significantly decrease headaches and other pains. Studies have also shown that simply looking at a photo of a loved one can reduce pain by up to 40%.

Well, this really depends on how you look at it, some people say love is down to fate, our path is already decided, out of our control. That sure sounds poetic, but the processes associated with love can actually be extrapolated and explained to a large extent by science. But I should warn you, this won't be romantic, unless statistics turn you on.

Psychologists have shown that it takes anywhere between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to decide if you fancy someone. Surprisingly being attracted to someone has very little to do with what they say, research shows that 55% is through body language, 38% is the tone and speed of their voice and only 7% is down to what they say.

In order to properly explain love we must first break it down into its 3 stages, lust, attraction and attachment. Each stage is driven by its own set of unique hormones and chemicals. A person must go through all 3 stages before they can truly be in love with someone, which kind of puts a spanner in the whole "love at first sight" thing.

The first stage, Lust is probably the most biologically simple, lust is driven by the sex hormones testosterone and oestrogen. In fact research shows that women actually have different tastes in men whilst using contraception. Women taking the pill prefer men with more feminine faces, whereas women not using contraception prefer more masculine men.

But what's even more interesting is that the features that trigger lust in a person differs between genders. Research shows that men are attracted to women that have a symmetrical face, full lips, full breasts, and wide hips compared to their waist size, or to put in more simply an hourglass figure. Because statistically curvy women are also the most fertile. In fact there's actually some maths behind this, in European countries the most desirable waist-to-hip ratio in women is 0.7, and in South America and Africa it's 0.9.

On the other hand, women prefer men with broad shoulders and a narrow waist. But most intriguingly, one of the most desirable qualities in a man is a healthy immune system. Research shows that women are subconsciously attracted to men with healthy faces, because this signals a strong immune system.

Stage 2 is Attraction, this is the stage when you're deeply in love and you can't think of anything but your new partner. Scientists think there are three main neurotransmitters involved with this stage, adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin.

Firstly, adrenaline along with the stress hormone cortisol are released in your body during the first few weeks of your new relationship. These two chemicals are responsible for making you sweat, increasing your heart rate and giving you a dry mouth when you're around your new love interest.

Secondly, your levels of dopamine increase, this gives you an intense rush of pleasure when you bump into your new love and it's what makes you desire them even more. Increased dopamine levels also increase your energy levels, and decrease your need for sleep and food. It actually has a very similar effect on the brain as taking cocaine.

And finally, whilst you're in the attraction stage, your levels of the serotonin neurotransmitter drop dramatically. This causes you to become obsessed with your new love interest, it's the reason they keep popping into your thoughts throughout the day. Interestingly the low serotonin levels experienced by new lovers are remarkably similar to the low serotonin levels found in patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

Lastly, the final and most important stage of love is attachment. During this stage the powerful bond is formed that keeps some couples together for life and makes them want to have children. Research shows there are two major hormones responsible for this feeling of attachment. Oxytocin and vasopressin.

Both the oxytocin and vasopressin hormones are released by men and women, when they kiss, cuddle and have sex. Scientists believe that the more sex a couple has, the deeper their bond becomes.

So in a nutshell, the answer to the question "What is love?", is "Love is a state of deep attachment to a fellow human being, caused by a combination of chemicals. Specifically: Testosterone, Oestrogen, Adrenaline, Dopamine, Serotonin, Oxytocin and Vasopressin".

Sounds so romantic doesn't it? I do apologise if I've somewhat ruined the magic. But remember, these are nothing more than scientific explanations for a set of symptoms and behaviours associated with being in love. In reality, love truly is a seemingly magical and rather beautiful, force of nature that could never be fully explained by science.

Evolutionary scientists believe that love is a product of evolution. The theory goes like this. Without love acting as the glue, in a relationship, keeping a partner long enough to reproduce is difficult. If love wasn't a component in most relationships, they most likely wouldn't last longer than a couple of weeks. Which, means a lot fewer couples would reproduce. It's love, that keeps relationships together for several years or more, long enough for them to have children, which, after all is the ultimate goal of evolution.

Scientists believe that over millions of years, humans, and certain other animals, have developed a specific set of chemical processes, to make us feel like we are emotionally attached to our potential mating partner. Thus giving us an incentive to want to stay together and ultimately reproduce. We, however, interpret this, as being in love.

But you may be thinking, if the sole purpose of love is just an incentive to reproduce. Then why do we love our family, and even our pets? It all has to do with the attachment hormone we talked about before, Oxytocin. It isn't just released when we have sex, it's also released in somewhat smaller doses when we simply touch another person, or animal. Every time we touch another person and experience a release of Oxytocin, we become more deeply attached to them. And who do you think you came in contact with the most as a baby, that's right, your family.

Ever heard the phrase "There's nothing like a mother's love". Well there really isn't, during the later stages of pregnancy Oxytocin levels in the mother surge to unfathomably high levels, these levels peak right at the moment of childbirth. This creates a seemingly unbreakable bond and an unrivalled level of attachment between the mother and child.

But it's not just humans that release Oxytocin. Scientists have discovered that dogs and cats, among many other animals, also release Oxytocin when they come into physical contact with another animal, or human. So good news animal lovers, this means, that your pet really does love you too. Scientists found that the more you socially interact with your pet, the more deeply they become attached to you, and hence the more deeply they will fall in love with you.

So then, like I promised here's how you can make someone fall in love with you. It's really quite simple, find a potential new suitor, it doesn't even have to be someone you know. Reveal some intimate details about your life to them, then stare deeply into their eyes for 4 minutes. There's a slight chance you may get a slap, but research shows that more often than not they will feel strangely attracted to you.

Obstacles that stand in the way of love can actually increase the chance of a relationship forming. Studies show that attraction is actually increased when external factors get in the way. A great example of this is when teenagers start a relationship and their parents object, it only makes the teenagers want to be together even more.
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