According to a study conducted by the Kinsey Institute, the brain of a person after taking cocaine looks the same as the brain of a person in love. This is because of the abundant presence of the happy hormone dopamine. Which means a person in love is high on happiness!
When joyous, our breathing becomes faster, our heartbeat increases, and our chest and entire body feel warmer.
There are neurotransmitters that can increase positive feelings. These include dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine and endorphins. However, research has shown that it's more than just chemicals and hormones that produce or bring about a feeling of happiness.
The truth is that happiness is finite. It's impossible to be happy now and remain happy for the rest of your life. My longest streak of exceptionally happy days has lasted 29 days. But the average streak of happy days actually only lasts 3 days before my happiness returns to average or even turns into sadness.
According to a study published in the Social Indicators Research journal, we're the happiest between the ages of 30-34, and midlife (our 40s and 50s) is not perceived as the least happy period in life.
Surprising findings: The 2 ages when people are happiest
But, a few years ago researchers identified the two ages in an adult's life when you are likely to be at your happiest. Experts from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences found that happiness peaks at the ages of 23 and 69.
Dopamine: Often called the "happy hormone," dopamine results in feelings of well-being. A primary driver of the brain's reward system, it spikes when we experience something pleasurable.
Dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter produced by the hypothalamus, a small region of the brain that helps you feel pleasure. It's an important part in your reward system, meaning the brain releases dopamine when you do things that feel good or pleasurable or when you complete a task.
The brain seals the deal by releasing oxytocin, often called “the love hormone.” It's a neuropeptide produced in the hypothalamus and secreted by the pituitary gland during times of intimacy, like hugging, breastfeeding and orgasm.
Extreme positive emotions can make us more prone to stereotype thinking, such as making decisions based on gender (Forgas, 2011). Cheerful people find it more difficult to detect a lie, thus being more easily deceived than those in a negative mood (Forgas). Really good feelings can also make us more selfish.
You Create Your Own Happiness
Constantly feeling joy is impossible, but a good sign that you're happy is you find it easy to bounce back. You have moments of unhappiness, but they don't bring you down for long. You know how to make yourself happy again. You find gratitude in the joyful moments in life.
Protecting your health: Happiness lowers your risk for cardiovascular disease, lowers your blood pressure, enables better sleep, improves your diet, allows you to maintain a normal body weight through regular exercise and reduces stress.
Being love-struck also releases high levels of dopamine, a chemical that “gets the reward system going,” said Olds. Dopamine activates the reward circuit, helping to make love a pleasurable experience similar to the euphoria associated with use of cocaine or alcohol.
Physical attraction, sexual compatibility, empathy, and emotional connection are key to making a man fall in love with a woman.
Chemistry is born of several different factors like physical attraction, mental stimulation, shared values and interests.
When our brains feel happy, endorphins are produced and neuronal signals are transmitted to your facial muscles to trigger a smile. This is the start of the positive feedback loop of happiness.
BOSTON - A new study finds that even if you just fake a smile, you may feel happier. Researchers at Stanford University led a global study involving more than 3,800 participants from 19 countries. After putting them through a variety of tasks, they found when the participants simply mimicked a smile, they felt happier.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that mediated satisfaction, happiness and optimism. Serotonin levels are reduced in depression, and most modern anti-depressant drugs, known as serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), act by increasing the amount of serotonin available to brain cells.
However, recent studies have begun to investigate oxytocin's role in various behaviors, including orgasm, social recognition, bonding, and maternal behavior. For this reason, it is now sometimes referred to as the “love hormone” and many such names described earlier.
Exercise, art, and music are proven to increase neural connections as well as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin—the neurochemicals that make us feel good.
Bipolar disorder, or manic depression, is a mood disorder that is characterized by periods of extreme swings of euphoria (positivity and happiness) to depression (sadness and negativity).
A Dartmouth economist has pegged what he claims is the most miserable age: 47.2 years old. A new study by David Blanchflower, collecting data about well-being and age from 132 countries, suggests that for people in developed nations, the “happiness curve” reaches its perigee at precisely 47.2 years.
When is our physical peak? The physical peak age is the point in your life when your reproductive system, motor abilities, strength, and lung capacity are in optimal condition – this generally occurs between 30 and 40 years of age.
In one large study from the Brookings Institute, for example, scientists found happiness was high for 18- to 21-year-olds and then dropped steadily until about age 40. But past middle age, the pattern began to reverse—gradually climbing back up to its highest point at age 98!
Researchers concluded that falling in love is much like the sensation of feeling addicted to drugs with the release of euphoria, including brain chemicals like dopamine, oxytocin, adrenaline, and vasopressin.