Oxytocin, the hormone of fidelity

Oxytocin  (or oxytocin), sometimes called the “love hormone,” according to a study, encourages male fidelity. Researchers have shown that if a man has a higher concentration of oxytocin, he perceives his partner to be more attractive than other women. German researchers from the University of Bonn reached these conclusions and published their study at the end of November 2013 in the American journal Proceedings . 

The study carried out by Dr. Hurlemann and his team analyzed 40 heterosexual men, all of whom were in a stable relationship. The researchers showed them a picture of their partner and, in some cases, compared it to a picture of a woman who was not their partner.

Participants were given a dose of oxytocin in the form of a nasal spray, and later also a placebo. Note that oxytocin is naturally secreted by the brain, in this experiment, however, participants were given an additional dose of oxytocin as a drug.

When participants were given oxytocin instead of a placebo, the researchers observed that the brain’s reward system was more active when they looked at pictures of their partners, and they were more attractive than other women.

When the scientists had other images of women such as friends or colleagues, the effect on the brain was not the same. That is, oxytocin acts selectively, in this case only on the loving partner.

According to Dr. Hurlemann who participated in the study, the action of oxytocin in the brain is very similar to a drug, for couples in a stable relationship. In fact, if a person uses a drug, it is because of the reward system that he wants to relive the pre-effect of the addictive product. This could explain the great psychological pain in cases of emotional breakdown, some heartaches in love can cause great suffering and lead to depression, as well as in cases of detoxification in relation to a drug.

From a scientific point of view, oxytocin would also be a reason for a relatively common monogamous behavior in humans. Testosterone is another hormone with a key role in male sexuality. It is obvious that other factors come into play, such as cultural or religious aspects, to explain fidelity (or not) in a couple.

Against autism too

A study published in the journal PNAS in early December 2013 showed that oxytocin can help socialization for children with autism, according to researchers at the Yale School of Medicine.

These studies and many others already published on oxytocin always justify its name of “love hormone” or “social hormone”.

Jeanne Kenney
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I’m a stylist trainer, a content creator, and an entrepreneur passion. Virgo sign and Pisces ascendant, I move easily between my dreams, the crazy world I want, and my feet on the ground to carry out my projects.

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