The stages of falling in love or lust are not often equated with chemicals in our brain, at least in a conversational explanation.  What we call “chemistry” is literally chemistry.   There are several chemicals responsible for the feelings that surface when we experience the “high” of passion and connection.

Adrenaline – the initial stage of neurotransmission.  I like to refer to this simply as “anticipation” and yet its physical affects mimic anxiety- a racing heart, sweaty palms.  Its not quite foreplay yet but your imagination begins to go wild as you are face to face knowing and yet wondering what will happen next.

Dopamine – A neurotransmitter often associated with the high experienced from drugs.  Foreplay and all its fun.  The rush of desire with an interlocking reward mimics can be applied to any situation where we feel “high” on life. Dopamine is a chameleon-dangerously posing as pleasure in times of excitement and exertion.   Yes, Dopamine is a busy little neurotransmitter, ping-ponging around the brain but mainly finding familiarity in the  the nucleus accumbens and prefrontal cortex.  The euphoric pleasure flooding the brain shunts any need for explanation.

Seratonin – This is a hormone  that is in layman’s terms, called “basking in the afterglow.”  Ironically, Seratonin is a neurotransmitter  that lies primarily in your gastrointestinal tract among other location and is derived from Tryptophan- the same chemical found in turkey.  Now we finally understand why Thanksgiving is considering to be many Americans’ favorite holiday.  We eat, feel peaceful and happy and then just relax into a comatose state of bliss. Ironically,  this is the same kind of bliss we feel after passionate sex.  Our hunger is satiated.

Oxytocin –    The next time you have a one-night stand and leave feeling close to that person, remember, its just the Oxytocin.   The chemicals released in the  brain create feeling of attachment and intimacy after carnal activity.

While it may seem clinical to think about sex and passion as purely scientific, I think it awe-inspiring to recognize the powerful potential of our anatomy and the  intangible effect generated as  result of these chemical brothers.

The chemical conversion of carnal.

Music mood – “Further” – Chemical Brothers

Neurally yours,

the naughty neuros xo