The organ most thought of when we think about love is the heart.
But actually the magic all happens in the brain.
So what it love? This is a question that poets and scientists discussed and studied for decades. Although it is still not fully known, we have come a long way defining it.
Studies show that the brain of someone in love looks similar to someone on cocaine. Cocaine lowers the threshold of pleasure centres in the brain, this means you feel really good, a lot easier.
Leading researcher, Helen Fisher from the university of Rutgers in New Jersey defined 3 stages of love.
Phase1: Lust: The hormones testosterone and oestrogen are sex hormones. When you are in love these hormones are released more frequently.
Phase2: Attraction: In this phase you cannot stop thinking about the person. You obsessively think about the person and want to spend time together. You might sleep less in order to spend more time with the person or daydreaming about the person. Your appetite might change. You might get sweaty hands and palm and for hear rate ma increase. The hormones that’s being released in the brain is dopamine, also activated by cocaine and nicotine. Or epinephrine, you will know his as adrenalin. This is what makes you start sweating and gets your heart racing. Serotonin, this is one lives most important chemicals.
Phase3: Attraction: This is the phase that keep people together when they go on having children and make a longer lasting commitment. The brain releases Oxytocin, this gets released by the hypothalamus gland during childbirth for a bond between mother and child, this hormone is also released by both partners during orgasm.
My favorite love poem is by Pablo Neruda called ‘I do not love you’
“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep your eyes close.”
We are in the festive season, if you are lucky enough you get to spend it with your loved ones. Make the most of this time. If you are like me, spending it with my kitten, I’m sending a special heart your way! 😙 Love is for everyone.
Tomorrow I’ll be writing what happens after love. I’ll be getting into heartbreak.