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Kissing is more than just an expression of one’s love, as it provides a variety of health benefits as well. Kissing boosts mental and physical health, be it by reducing anxiety, fighting cavities or managing blood pressure.
When you kiss someone, you are not just showing your affection, but also participating in one of the earliest evolutionary mechanisms for social bonding. And yes, kissing does make you feel alive as it stimulates the release of adrenaline and noradrenaline, increasing your heart rate and making you more alert.
Kissing provides some remarkable health benefits, backed by science:
When you kiss, your brain is triggered to release chemicals such as oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin, that make you feel happy, euphoric and lower your cortisol levels (stress-inducing hormones). This concoction of happy hormones helps to keep mood changes in check and makes you feel elated.
As kissing helps reduce cortisol levels, it could potentially enhance your feelings of self-worth, as the stress levels are on a decline. The stress-reducing effect of kissing facilitates motivation in our behaviour, and hence reduces anxiety.
Kissing dilates the blood vessels, which helps reduce blood pressure levels. This happens as your heart rate increases while kissing, thereby dilating the blood vessels, which increases the blood flow and triggers a decrease in your blood pressure. Also, as the cortisol levels decrease when you kiss, the cholesterol levels also take a plunge as stress is a major contributor to it.
Since saliva gets secreted when you kiss, the plaque on your teeth that leads to cavities is washed away. Saliva helps remove cavity-causing particles that get stuck to your teeth. The secretion of saliva may also lead to an exchange of good bacteria, exposing you to germs that strengthen your immune system’s ability to fight infections.
Although you can’t replace kissing with a workout session, kissing does help burn 2-3 calories per minute. Your metabolism also gets a boost when you kiss, thereby enhancing the calorie burn as the rate of oxygen flowing within your body increases with the increase in heart rate. Kissing engages 3 to 35 facial muscles, giving your face a solid workout. This helps in toning your facial muscles as it boosts collagen production, making your face look firmer and younger.
Besides showing your affection and love, isn’t it great that kissing also provides such important health benefits? Kissing can have a positive impact on your emotional and physical health and wellbeing, and help the individual indulging in it, feel good about themselves. And what better way to talk about the multitude of benefits it can have than on Kissing Day?