Oh love – why does my heart beat so fast?

loveResearchers have mapped the chemical changes that occur in a person’s brain when he falls in love and discovered the areas that activate and shut down during the heady days of courtship. Scanning technology allows neurologists to unravel the mystery of why love can turn us giddy, irrational and even ridiculous and make us nervous and unstable.

Researchers hope it may also one day reveal why a few of us might overstep the mark when dealing with the object of our affections, the Daily Mail reported.     They found the frontal cortex, vital to judgement, shuts down when we fall in love. MRI scans show this deactivation occurs only when someone is shown a photo of the person they adore, causing them to suspend all criticism or doubt.

“When you see someone you are passionate about, some areas of the brain become active. But a large part is de-activated, the part that plays a role in judgement,” Semir Zeki, professor of neuro-aesthetics at University College London, said.

Zeki believes the brain may behave in this way for “higher biological purposes” — it makes reproduction more likely. If judgement is suspended, the most unlikely pair can get together and reproduce. Studies have shown brain chemical dopamine is at higher levels in those in love, the report said.

Dopamine is key to our experiences of pleasure and pain, linked to desire, addiction, euphoria, and a surge may cause such acute feelings of reward that it makes love hard to give up. Now we know why is love such a complex thing to do! You don’t just love someone, we build chemistry.

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