Love is a strange yet wonderful thing. But how many facts about love do you really know? These psychological secrets might surprise you!
Have you ever been in love? Are you in love now, or are you yet to fall for someone? Whatever your situation, learning facts about love, its origin, and how it affects so many parts of life can not only remind us of how lucky we are but also how much we still have to learn.
Love isn’t this magical feeling that is unexplainable. It isn’t just for romantic relationships. Love is shared between friends and family. Love is something that benefits you in so many ways.
However, there’s no denying that love can also be mysterious and confusing from time to time. When it goes wrong, it hurts. But when it’s going well, it’s the best feeling in the world.
[Read: Falling in love fast and why you need to slow down]
What is love, and why is it so special?
Love is a group of different and very deep emotions that help us to form a strong bond with someone. Of course, love can be one-sided or it can be reciprocated. But whatever type of love you have and who it’s for, love is complex.
Over time, love can change, and it can be either healthy or unhealthy depending on the relationship. This is one of the facts about love that people tend to overlook.
It’s easy to assume that you can’t explain love because you can’t see it. You can’t really measure it, because it’s just something you feel. But it’s probably the strongest thing we experience as humans.
Love is feeling comfortable, accepted, desired, wanted, and a million and one other things. It’s knowing that you would do anything for the person you’re in love with, and having a partner by your side. [Read: 103 heartfelt signs to know if you love someone or are falling in love]
Interesting facts about love you might not know
Let’s take a look at some interesting facts about love to show you that, yes, those butterflies in your stomach and that heartbreak you feel are not only real—but backed by science.
Read on and enjoy!
1. There is forever
Well, not exactly. But we all want to believe in a forever with the love of our life, right? To give you some relief, monogamous relationships are possible and we are not all “animals.”
Even animals, themselves, can stick to one partner, and mate only with one another for life. [Read: 17 secret ingredients to a happy, monogamous relationship]
2. Beating as one
Couples who are in love and in a romantic relationship are found to synchronize their heart rates *or, in science speak: co-regulate their physiologies* after they gaze into each other’s eyes for three minutes.
3. Love is a drug
Falling in love can give you a high like you are on cocaine, a study says. This is because both can trigger the same feeling of euphoria in the brain.
In fact, both love and cocaine stimulate 12 areas of the brain at the same time, releasing chemicals such as adrenaline, oxytocin, and dopamine.
4. Cuddles, anyone?
There is, in fact, a cuddle hormone called oxytocin that is released when you cuddle with your loved ones.
This hormone is produced in the brain, ovaries, and testicles, and is involved in bonding two people together, such as mother and child, or you and your partner. [Read: 16 non-sexual touches to make you feel more loved and connected]
5. Cuddles are also great painkillers
The oxytocin released in the body is found to significantly reduce the pain caused by headaches. So if you want to make love to your partner, but they tell you they have a headache, cuddle first, and the headache might go away in time for you to do the deed.
6. Speaking of pain…
Another fun fact about the power of love is that even by just looking at a picture of your loved one, your pain will decrease significantly. So, if you want to feel better, be sure to have a picture of your special someone by your bedside.
7. Hand-holding is similar to cuddling
If you are lucky enough to have your loved one beside you while you’re in pain, be sure to hold their hand.
Holding your loved one’s hand, like cuddling, can be so soothing that it can also relieve stress and pain. [Read: Public display of affection – How to do it, PDA etiquette, and 26 must-knows]
8. Achy, breaky heart
Surprisingly, that image of a heart with a zigzagging line down the middle, the ever-popular symbol for heartbreak, can be proven by science. Heartbreak is real.
Deeply negative emotional triggers such as a breakup, a betrayal, or the loss of a loved one can give you strong chest pain and shortness of breath called Broken Heart Syndrome. [Read: The real reason why your heart hurts when love goes bad]
9. Love can be an obsession
Someone in love often exhibits strange, out-of-character behavior that is also associated with someone who has Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
If you are in the early, budding stage of love, you will have lower serotonin levels associated with happiness, while having higher levels of cortisol, which is associated with stress.
10. Love is an addiction
Studies show that looking at photos of your loved ones can trigger the caudate, the region of the brain responsible for cravings.
So when you see your significant other’s photos on Instagram and you start to miss them, that’s actually your caudate doing its job. [Read: Love addiction – 20 signs you’re addicted to a relationship and how to free yourself]
11. Same looks?
Some research has identified a pattern showing that people with the same level of attractiveness end up together.
This doesn’t mean that if you look and dress the same as your partner that you will marry each other *though some couples do begin to look like each other over time*.
This only means that if you have the same perceived social desirability as your partner, you end up considering each other a match over other people.
12. Opposites DO attract
Research has shown that couples who always agree aren’t really that romantically compatible. Couples who could be described as opposites end up being happier in a relationship because they have more things to learn from each other.
So if you’re a cat person and your partner isn’t, that’s your cue. [Read: 50 relationship questions to test your compatibility immediately]
13. Face or body?
Ah, the age-old question. Well, it turns out that if you are looking for a long-term relationship, you are more likely to look for someone who has an attractive face. However, if you are looking for someone with an attractive body, you are more likely to be just in it for the night.
14. Those butterflies are real
Science was able to prove that those butterflies you feel when you see your crush or the love of your life are real. It’s not actual butterflies, though.
What you feel in your tummy is actually adrenaline, which floods your body *thanks to evolution* due to your innate fight-or-flight response. [Read: Am I in love? 30 signs tor had the fuzzy flutters after infatuation]
15. Love is good for your memory
So, your partner forgot your anniversary again? Don’t sweat it and instead, cut each other some slack. In fact, give them a year.
It’s been proven that falling in love calms both body and mind. It also increases the nerve growth factor for over a year, helping restore your nervous system *and those brain cells*, thereby improving memory.
16. A lover’s dozen
There is actually a magic number for finding your one true love: 12. Mathematical theory actually tells us that we should date a dozen people before choosing a long-term partner. This provides us with the best chance to find our best match.
17. Familiarity doesn’t breed contempt
Actually, it breeds romance. You are more likely to fall for someone you see on a daily basis, such as an officemate, because one of the biggest predictors of love is at work: proximity. [Read: Tips to keep in mind when you date your boss]
18. Online dating is a go
Forget hooking up at a bar—go online instead. 23% of couples who meet via social dating sites end up marrying each other.
But don’t tell that to the founder of Match.com, who lost his girlfriend to someone she met on—where else—Match.com. Talk about irony.
19. She got it from your momma
If you’re a guy, it’s most likely that you are more attracted to women who possess a bone structure that is similar to your mom’s. This is because of what researchers call “sexual imprinting.”
20. Dangerous encounters
People are more likely to fall in love if they find each other in a dangerous situation than if they are in an everyday, mundane setting. So if you’re looking for that special someone, you’d better go skydiving or white-water rafting. [Read: 50 awesome first date ideas that’ll make your date fall in love with you]
21. Eye to eye
A study has shown how eye contact can make people fall in love. In an experiment, people of the opposite sex were made to talk about intimate details with each other for 90 minutes and then stare into each other’s eyes without talking.
Many found deep attraction and two even went on to marry. [Read: Subtle eye contact flirting moves to make anyone fall for you]
22. Chin up
People with high self-esteem have proven to be more successful in their relationships. So love yourself!
23. Humor trumps looks
Women associate a sense of humor with intelligence and honesty. This is why most women are attracted to men with a strong sense of humor. Keep those jokes coming! [Read: How to make a girl laugh and like you instantly]
24. Love and lust are not the same
Love is fueled by emotions. Lust is fueled by the motivation to receive a reward rather than the empathy that comes with love. [Read: The clearest signs you’re feeling lust and not love]
25. Love can be brief
We always think of love as eternal, but it can be both. Love can be fleeting; you can be in love with someone for days. Love can be a lasting state, but also momentary.
26. Love is not all you need
It is nice to say that love is enough to make a relationship last, but that just isn’t true. Couples who still feel love for each other can end up apart due to so many other circumstances and factors.
27. We can love more
You may think you are only worthy of so much love because of what you can give. With things like meditation and self-love, you can learn how to love more fully.
Practicing positive thoughts can help you gain the capacity for empathy and reduce feelings such as fear. [Read: How to be more positive – 24 steps to a happy and dramatic life shift]
28. You cannot run out of love
Love does not have a limit. You do not have 100% of love and must divide that among the people in your life. Just because you love one person does not take away from the love you have for another.
Love is cared for with emotional engagement, focus, and actions. There is plenty to go around! [Read: The different types of love you’ll experience in your life]
29. Love is not unconditional
We often hear the term ‘unconditional love.’ That means your love remains no matter what, but one of the requirements for love is safety. Another is trust.
This is why trauma can prevent us from forming deep emotional connections without the proper care and therapy.
30. It’s not all in your mind
Love is not just something you think. It is seen throughout your body. A lack of love can have as much of a negative impact on your life as smoking. [Read: How to think positive and reprogram your mind to stay positive]
31. Love can improve long-term health
Those who are married live longer and healthier lives than those who are single. However, the heartbreaking downside is that after losing a spouse, it shortens the life expectancy of the person left behind.
32. Love changes over time
When you fall in love with someone new, it incites those feelings of excitement. You get butterflies. But over time, that love morphs into committed love that comes with feelings of security and comfort.
So, don’t worry if the obsessive love you had at first doesn’t last over the long term, what you’re going through is normal. [Read: Relationship stages – the phases couples go through by months and years]
33. Timing affects love
Studies show that people are more likely to fall in love when they are seeking adventure, are lonely, adjusting to change, or are psychologically or financially prepared for a family. [Read: These kissing techniques will achieve that heartbeat-skipping kiss]
34. Food and love are linked
Research shows that people thinking about love find foods to taste sweeter than those not thinking about love. It’s also thought that women are more open to romantic gestures after eating a meal than before.
35. The fear of love is real
It is normal to fear love. Love can lead to heartbreak, but there is an actual fear of love called philophobia. [Read: Downright strange but true phobias about love]
36. The soulmate question
The majority of married women say that their husband is not their soulmate, yet 73% of Americans believe in soulmates.
So, does that mean soulmates don’t always have to be a lover? They could be a friend too, right?
37. Monogamy is not just for humans
Monogamy is not just a human tradition. Animals like wolves, penguins and even some mice mate for life too.
38. The ring finger
We often wear engagement rings on a specific finger because the Ancient Greeks believed that the ‘vein of love’ ran from the fourth finger on the left hand straight to the heart. [Read: 15 things to know before you get engaged that can make or break it]
39. Love makes you more in tune with your other emotions
When you’re in love, you can’t help but feel all the emotions associated with it. But over time it can teach you to be more in tune with your feelings and to be more empathetic at the same time.
You start to think about the other person and how they’re feeling, adjusting your actions accordingly.
40. Love can make you do things you probably shouldn’t
It’s true that sometimes love can be so intense that it can push you to do things you probably wouldn’t otherwise do. However, you can overcome this by questioning your actions before going for them!
We can put this down to the hormones released when you’re in love. Be careful though, you can’t take back whatever you’ve done! [Read: How to calm down – 15 instant hacks to put the crazy away]
41. Love and lust light up different parts of the brain
Researchers have found that two specific parts of the brain are associated with love and lust, namely the striatum and insula.
During studies, different parts of the brain ‘lit up’ when participants were shown pictures associated with lustful feelings versus the comforting feeling of love.
See, there is a difference between love and lust!
42. Adventure can make you feel more in love
When you’re on an adventure, your adrenaline is pumping. And when you’re with someone you love, that combination can increase the feelings you have for them.
So, if you want to feel closer to your partner, grab your hiking boots and head off on an adventure! [Read: Couples bucket list – 32 must-do things to create experiences together]
43. A woman’s menstrual cycle determines the type of man she finds attractive
One of the most interesting facts about love is that most women find masculine types of men more attractive during the ovulation phase of their menstrual cycle.
But this is good news for guys who aren’t overly alpha because the same research showed women are only attracted to these types of men for a few days per month and don’t really see them as having long-term potential.
44. Productivity goes out of the window
In the first few months of being in love, there’s a high chance that your productivity levels are going to be pretty low. You can’t think of anything but you’re special someone, that’s why! [Read: How to stop glorifying busy and start living instead]
45. Time to get a pet?
There are many reasons why keeping a pet is a good idea, but it might also be good for your relationship. Studies have shown that couples with a pet have a lower blood pressure than those who don’t. That means less stress and more relaxation!
So, use this fact about love to go out and find a fur baby of your own.
Love makes the world go around
Science has managed to whip up a pretty cool explanation for all things love: why we fall in love, how our body reacts to love, how love makes everything better, and how heartbreak really does hurt.
Despite learning these facts about love, however, the subject continues to awe and inspire even the most scientifically-minded among us.
What we know for sure is that once love takes over, there’s no stopping it. Love is, inexplicably, one of the most powerful motivators in the world—and if you’ve found the love of your life, know that you are extremely fortunate.
[Read: 15 strange and unknown facts about divorce]
The more we know about why and how we love, the more mysterious and beautiful love becomes. However, it’s always fun to know a few fun facts about love—if only to use to impress others!