A leading neuroscientist has predicted that research on the effects of Oxytocin will lead to the development of love potions in the near future. Pointing to growing evidence of the role that the hormone plays in producing feelings of empathy and in social bonding, Dr Larry Young claims that oxytocin nasal sprays will soon be available to couples to assist in maintaining a loving relationship, as well as to treat interpersonal relationship disorders such as autism.
“I don’t think that it’s overstating it,” Dr. Young said. “As we know more about the chemistry…. I think it is very likely that we’ll be able to tweak our emotions, like love, through neurochemistry. We already tweak our consciousness with lots of other things: alcohol, drugs. If we could get the right mixture, we could enhance love, or turn it off.”
Dr. Young added a note of caution – if a chemical like Oxytocin can switch love on, another chemical could equally turn it off.
More evidence of the role that Oxytocin plays in regulating social behaviour has been uncovered by researchers at the University of Zurich. By giving a dose of the hormone Oxytocin to arguing couples via a nasal spray, they found that the stress hormone Cortisol would be reduced and that conflict levels were less than in those couples merely given a placebo.
Click to read the full story about Oxytocin nasal sprays reducing stress.
Scientific investigation into the mystery of love might for some be analysing the rainbow to an uncomfortable extent, but for some researchers, the process of falling (and staying) in love, is as facinating and explorable as any other human phenomenon. Oregon scientist Larry Sherman has studied the neurological changes and hormone releases that love triggers (or should that be triggers love?) and, surprise surprise, he has found Oxytocin to be amongst the chief culprits! Primarily, it is beginning to appear that Oxytocin, ‘the love hormone’, gives us the urge to stay in love, to be committed to a particular partner.
“So could we make a love potion that makes you only monogamous, right?” asks Sherman.
Readers of this blog will be amongst the first to learn when it will be hitting the shelves..stay tuned Mrs Clinton!