Not-So-Stupid Cupid: 19 Natural Health Benefits of Being in Love
I think I love you. I want to know what love is. I just called to say I love you. Love will keep us together. Love is an open door. All you need is love.
Falling in love is as universal as it is exhilarating – just take a look around at our collective fascination with love. It’s the heart of our music, the root of our stories, the landmark moments in our lives. The narrative of a love story is at the core of the human experience.
We are fixated with falling in love – and for good reason. What you’re feeling isn’t just in your head – your entire body reacts with a ripple effect of health benefits when you’re in the throes of love. Researchers studied the biological health benefits of being in love, and the results are clear. It turns out it’s more than just silly love songs!
Here are the health benefits you can expect to experience in your next whirlwind romance.
19 healthy perks of being in love
1. It lowers your sensation of pain
When you touch someone you love, your body releases a hormone called oxytocin, which comes with a whole slew of benefits. One main perk of oxytocin is that it reduces feelings of pain. That’s why you feel so good when you’re with your sweetheart!
And there’s good news for singles too – oxytocin is also produced when you spend time with friends or play with your pets!
2. It’s a stress-reducer
The oxytocin that’s released when you’re in love can also alleviate feelings of stress and reduce cortisol, a stress hormone that can cause some serious damage in the body. That’s why you can relax with your significant other like none other.
3. It can help fight off depression
Being in love triggers your body to release the feel-good chemical dopamine, which explains the blissfulness you feel when you’re together. Additionally, researchers discovered a link between low levels of oxytocin and depression – just another healthy perk of falling in love!
4. It boosts your energy
Staying up talking to your crush on the phone all night? No problem! The dopamine that floods your brain when you’re falling in love increases your energy levels and creates a hypomanic-like state in your brain, similar to that of someone with bipolar disorder.
5. It lowers your blood pressure
You guessed it – that multitasking hormone oxytocin is at it again! It also helps to decrease your blood pressure, unlike loneliness which is known to have the opposite effect.
6. It keeps you at a healthy weight
Being in love is exciting – and made even more exciting by the adrenaline your body produces. Adrenaline also suppresses the appetite, so don’t be surprised if you’re suddenly skipping those snacks you used to sneak throughout the day. And the rush of oxytocin also helps fend off obesity!
7. It improves your immune system
Being in love helps your immune system, too! Those warm fuzzies help you produce more antibodies, which serve as your body’s first line of defense against infection and disease.
8. It promotes healing
Studies show that higher levels of the love hormone oxytocin can help heal wounds, should you ever be struck by Cupid’s bow.
9. It helps your heart
If your heart feels like it’s overflowing with love, there’s good news for your health. Researchers concluded that happy marriages lowered the risk of cardiovascular disease.
10. It encourages optimism
Love always seems to have people seeing the world through rose colored glasses. It turns out there’s some science behind that! Studies show a correlation between oxytocin, optimism and the feeling of control over one’s life.
11. It lifts your self-esteem
That feeling of self-assurance is not just in your head! Studies have also linked higher levels of oxytocin to a boost in self-esteem levels, making you more likely to strive for your best and achieve your goals.
12. It alleviates autism symptoms
Researchers have found a link between oxytocin and improved social, emotional and behavioral issues amongst children with autism. And good news — it’s been reported that a synthetic oxytocin medication may be in the works!
13. It helps you conquer shyness
If you have a tendency towards bashfulness, being in love could greatly benefit you. Much like how oxytocin benefits social skills for those with autism, it can also improve shyness for wallflowers.
14. It calms down anxieties
15. It improves digestion
When you’re in love, the ensuing oxytocin flood can fight intestinal inflammation and promote healthy digestion. Plus (as you’re now aware) oxytocin offsets stress, which is known to aggravate digestion.
16. It can help you beat cancer
Should you ever receive a cancer diagnosis, being in love can help you overcome it. Studies show cancer patients with satisfying relationships produced more natural killer cells than those who were battling solo.
17. It helps ease labor & delivery
When being in love leads to starting a family, oxytocin will help you along the way. The powerful hormone assists women in labor by speeding up contractions. Once the little one has arrived, oxytocin helps mother and baby create a trusting bond and is also transferred to the bundle of joy through breast milk, passing along its myriad of health benefits.
18. It makes you appear younger & healthier
Have you ever had someone tell you “You’re glowing” when you’re in love? Well it turns out there’s some truth to the expression. This newfound appearance may even make them look younger, due to the increased blood flow to their skin.
19. It can lengthen your life
Is it a coincidence that happily married people live longer? We think not! Research suggests you can expect a few more happier and healthier years together.
There’s a lot to love!
Love is pretty sweet – and the bountiful health benefits of being in love make it even sweeter!
But don’t let it stop there! Explore health and wellness possibilities for every aspect of your life in our article: 21 Wellness Blogs to Help Keep You Healthy & Happy.