When the Luv Bug Catches You!


By Edison De Mello, MD, PhD

Blame it on chemistry: Testosterone, Dopamine, Oxycotin, … and your nose, get you Ready for Luv.

Testosterone is not just the “macho hormone” that most people think of it as. It actually drives sexual desire in both men and women. The salivary transfer of this powerful hormone is believed to be what increases sexual desire in partners during kissing.
Dopamine levels, the brain’s pleasure hormone that plays a role in gambling and drug use, are also increased when good ol’ cupid pierces you. Dopamine is responsible for focused goal oriented behavior; when no one else matters but the subject of our love, such as a baby to a new mom. This hormone, present in both early-stage and long-term romantic love, is what makes couples feel excited and energetic about each other when falling in love.
Oxytocin, the hormone that promotes intimacy and bonds couples together is responsible for the kissing, hugging, and touching that people in love, Oxytocin’s rise in new moms is also what promotes milk production and the bonding with their babies. Even the love people experience with pets is due to oxytocin.
Your nose also pays a major part in the chemical concoction that happens when the luv bug catches you. Chemical messengers called pheromones are believed to play a part in human sexual attraction, and smell – as most people have experienced –  can be a powerful part of being in love.

And it is true; love can actually make you feel as if you’re going crazy. A study by Syracuse University found that thanks to a release of chemicals in the brain that produce a euphoric high, it only takes a fifth of a second to fall in love. But there is more; The British Psychological Society examined numerous brain scans and found that the brain ‘in a state of love’ and the brain in ‘a state of mental illness’ show a ‘considerable overlap’.

So, similarly to other languages, the term falling in love implies a sense of helplessness that is parallel to the symptoms of depression; that is upset stomach, mood swings, insomnia, loss of concentration, dizziness, and confusion, hence, the term “falling in love” instead of “rising in love”. The obsessive compulsive act of constantly checking our phone/email for messages from someone that we are falling for, or the fact that we cannot think of anything else but playing with that adorable puppy or cuddly kitten waiting for us at home, are a few of the crazy things that we all do when falling in love.

So Let Akasha help you optimize your hormones so you can continue to feel crazy in love.

Dr. Edison de Mello is the Founder of the Akasha Center for Integrative Medicine. Feel Free to email us at or call us at 310-451-8880 to schedule an appointment.