6 Health Benefits of Kissing

Why is kissing so great?

Because her lips are so soft and she smells so good and it just makes me warm and fuzzy.

Well, that may be true. But besides that adorable sentiment, there is research that may explain why smooching is just so wonderful. A good kiss can be intoxicating and dizzying, leaving you feeling weak in the knees—and that’s not all in your head, either. Your body physiologically reacts quite favorably to a good kiss.

In fact, there are even health benefits of kissing. If you want to treat your body right, go put on some chapstick, pop a mint, and pucker up. That’s right, I’m giving you scientific excuses to go make out, because making out with that special someone is not only good for your soul, but your body as well.

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Why Kissing is Good For You

1. Decreases stress levels

Is the daily grind making you feel crazy? When you’re feeling on edge, I’ve got a solution for you: grab your partner and give them a peck…or two…or three. Research says that kissing lowers stress levels and can help you feel at ease. It’s thought that the reason for this is that kissing increases levels of oxytocin and endorphins in the body, helping you feel relaxed and stress-free.

2. Lowers pain

You know those lovely endorphins I just mentioned? Those also are powerful pain relievers, so when you kiss, your pain tolerance may increase. So next time you have a headache, don’t reach for the Advil—reach for his lips. (…with your lips. Am I painting a good picture here?)

3. Makes you happy

You may think you’re feeling happy because that special someone just gave you a mind-blowing kiss, but there’s science behind that one, too! The oxytocin and endorphins that are released when you kiss are sometimes referred to as “happy chemicals” and can put you in a good mood, according to the book Meet Your Happy Chemicals by Loretta Graziano Breuning, PhD.

Related: 4 Easy Steps to Happiness

4. Boosts the immune system

Forget that apple—a kiss a day may keep the doctor away. According to a study published in the journal Medical Hypotheses, kissing can keep illnesses away, such as Cytomegalovirus in women, which can cause serious birth defects

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