Apparently, a kiss is not just a kiss. There's fuel behind it. And that fuel is known as “the kissing hormone.” Ironically, it has a name with the word “kiss” in it— kisspeptin.
It’s kind of a trip that it’s been proven our mouths are the dirtiest part of our bodies and yet, who doesn’t like to pucker up as often as possible?
When we’re in a new relationship, we live for a good first kiss. When we’re in a committed one, kissing makes us feel closer to our partner. And sex without kissing? That’s just…whack. Yet, we’re pretty sure nobody realized our thoughts on kissing had anything to do with a hormone running rampant throughout our body.
But…it does.Here’s the deal: kisspeptin is what causes us to be attracted to our partners. It’s also the fuel behind a lot of our sex drive. Scientists have discovered that when a male mouse releases pheromones, it activates the kisspeptin neurons in his system, which sends signals to other neurons throughout his body. This, in turn, releases what are known as gonadotropin hormones and that is what inspires attraction. They also send signals to his neurotransmitter nitric oxide, which triggers his sex drive and arousal.
One of the reasons this news is trending right now is because, for years, this info has been attributed to puberty (like what makes a teen’s libido suddenly hit the roof as they aspire to get that first great kiss). Now, what scientists are also discovering, is if a woman has a low sex drive (otherwise known as HSDD—Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder), paying attention to how this hormone is operating in her body could ultimately boost her drive and even intensify orgasms.
This is great news to hear because HSDD affects at least 40 percent of women at some point in their lives; 5-15 percent on a continual basis. Professor Ulrich Boehm from Saarland University in Germany had this to say in an interview with The Guardian:
"Until now, little was known about how the brain ties together ovulation, attraction and sex. Now we know that a single molecule – kisspeptin – controls all of these aspects through different brain circuits running in parallel with one another."
Hmm. This might also explain why we are so drawn to someone who is a great kisser and so turned off by someone who isn’t. Either way, if your sex drive hasn’t been the best lately, it may not be in your head. Maybe your kisspeptin levels are off.
Make an appointment to ask your physician about it. If they’re aware of kisspeptin, keep them around for sure. They’re thorough. If they’re not? Well, their patient just taught them something new and you both can discover a remedy together.