Why Do People Kiss? the Science Behind It

Why Do People Kiss? the Science Behind It

A kiss is a form of endearment. Even in the Book of Genesis, it’s written that people who lived thousands of years ago used kissing to show affection. The funny thing about it is that kissing predated science and recorded human history.

There has to be something behind a kiss. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be as a universally accepted form of endearment that survived the rise and fall of empires in all corners of the world.

So why do people kiss? Scientists that study the past, such as sociology, archaeology, anthropology, and other ‘-ologies’ agree that humans everywhere for all time have been doing it in some shape or form for a long time. So it begs the question, why?

There’s a specific ‘-ology’ for it, and they have some theories

According to Live Science, kissing feels good, but some over-educated people believe that they need to spend research money creating a whole branch of science to find a more “sufficient” explanation.

This branch called Philematology from the Greek word Philema, meaning kiss (Very creative). It is a formal scientific study and use of Grant money to study the science behind kissing. I’m sure it will come as a shock to Hedonists if they heard about it.

Here is what they have learned:

  1. They don’t know if it’s learned or instinctive
  2. 10% of the world don’t kiss
  3.  We sniff out each other’s pheromones to find a compatible mate
  4. The Hedonists are right

Not sure if this is a great start, but they are from studies published by Philematologists in Scienceline, which is a project of New York University’s Science, Health, and Environmental Program.

Half the world finds kissing gross, but for the rest, it’s about brain love

The lips and tongue are connected to a part of our brain that’s somatosensory, which in effect gives in tactile acuity. In layman’s terms, The brain wants you to lock lips and tongue with another person because it’s attached to a body part that makes it easy to remember the other person.

Not sure if this is true for casual hookups where people don’t even remember who they had sex with last night, but that’s what studies indicate.

In fairness to their study, They say that kissing stimulates the brain and correspondingly creates a brain to brain intimacy. So if the person in question kissing doesn’t have a certain amount of intelligence, then it doesn’t refute their study.

Moving on, according to their research. The tongue and lips act as a brain sexual organ and locking them together with someone else can create brain intimacy. It is based on the scientific jargon mentioned earlier.

It depends on who we are kissing

It depends on who we are kissing

OK so why do people kiss? It depends. Great answer, Doctor Obvious. But according to a 2013 study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in the United States of America, we kiss because it creates a love hormone called Oxytocin. This Oxytocin, like many other hormones, is naturally produced by the body and has weird effects that rattle our brain and ability to think logically.

According to their study, Oxytocin makes men monogamous. Yes, just men.

Women experience Oxytocin overdose not by kissing, but by giving birth. It’s a sexist hormone.

It also produces Dopamine, which is a natural high neurotransmitter. So I guess this means they also agree with the Hedonists and the Legalize Cannabis lobbyists.

Women want to have healthy babies

Ok, I don’t know if I’ve ever met a woman who doesn’t want to have a healthy baby, but let’s assume that such a masochist (since females are natural masochists) exists, kissing is about something called major histocompatibility complex or MHC. MHC was found using a study conducted by having random women smell worn shirts of random men.

MHC is supposed to be part of our genes that let our immune system knows if something is good or bad for the body.

Kissing creates a DNA exchange and the body compares MHC, Women are then attracted to men whose MHC is different from their own.

The logic goes, women want to find a partner whose genetic immunity strengths are opposite of their own so they can create an offspring that has none of the weaknesses of both parents. I don’t know why a lot of neighborhood sluts end up with local fuckboy, but according to this study, it shouldn’t happen if they kiss each other a lot.

According to this study, as mentioned MHC will make a person prefer a person with an opposite MHC. So the lesson here is, go interracial.

The human sense of smell sucks, so we kiss  to exchange pheromones

Only 46% of human cultures actually kiss. A huge majority of small nameless tribes in the middle of nowhere, that nobody has ever heard of, find it offensive.

That aside, the study also claims that among animals, primates included, (A taxonomic order says where humans, together with baboons, lemurs, and marmosets belong to) kissing is rare.

The reason why we kiss is that our species, the Homo Sapiens, resorted to saliva exchange because we, together with a few other species, need it to exchange pheromones. We need to pheromone spiked kissing because unlike other animals, our evolution screwed up our ability to find mates at a distance by their scent. Hence we need to exchange saliva to determine if that other animal is a potential mate.

But unlike those other species, we also created Push-up bras, Ferraris, and Plastic Surgery to compensate for our lack of ability to pick up pheromones from the opposite gender.

So why do people kiss? All these time-consuming and expensive studies put together by people with Ph.D.’s (I’m assuming they have one since they claim to be scientists) seem to have one common ground. We kiss because we love our partners! I’m pretty sure everyone knows that already.

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