Kissing is one of my favorite pastimes. Call me old fashioned, call me boring, call me simple —but to me, kissing is the tops. So imagine my delight when I found out all of the little ways kissing makes your life better. And not just because it's fun. One of the most innocent pastimes and at the same time a gateway drug to somewhat sexier things, kissing is scientifically proven to enhance your quality of life.
Remember your first kiss? Mine was horrible, and mildly terrifying — but it paved the way for a lifetime of kissing that's only gotten better with age. In The Science of Kissing, Dr. Sheril Kirshenbuam discovered that most people can recall about 90 percent of their first kiss — which is more than people can recall about losing their virginity.
So the next time you need a little mood boost, or need to kick back and relax — why not include kissing on the docket? If you need convincing, just read below to find out all of the ways prioritizing kissing in your day to day life can lead to positive changes. You're in the pursuit of happiness — and kissing is the perfect place to start. Whether it's your partner, your friend with benefits, or just the cutie you went on a date with last night, prepare your pucker and get to smooching.
1. It Relaxes You
Scientific reports say kissing increases the levels of oxytocin, the body’s chemical that naturally calms you down. It also increases endorphins, which you know makes you a happier person. Mix the two together and you've got a lethally relaxing cocktail in the form of a good old fashioned liplock.
2. It Burns Calories
Bryant Stamford, professor and director of the health promotion center at the University of Louisville told WebMD that, "during a really, really passionate kiss, you might burn two calories a minute — double your metabolic rate." Not exactly an intense cardio workout, but do it enough and you might just work off that extra glass of wine you had last night.
3. It Helps You Figure Out Compatibility
"Women say they can tell if a relationship is going to work after the first kiss, after the first night of kissing," Michael Cane, author of The Art of Kissing told WebMD. "They just get a feeling, an intuition." This could be because out of 12 cranial nerves, five of them pick up data from around the mouth. Kissing can make or break your potential relationship. No pressure on your technique, though.
4. It Makes You Stronger
Well, it makes your facial muscles stronger. A good ole game of tonsil hockey with your favorite make out partner can exercise all the underlying muscles in your face. The American Journal of Medicine says you can use up to 34 muscles while kissing.
5. It Promotes Oral Health
According to dentist Mathew Messinda, a good makeout session can help you out. The extra saliva washes bacteria off your teeth, and can help break down oral plaque. "Still, I would not go around advocating kissing after meals instead of brushing," Messinda told WebMD.
6. It Boosts Your Immunity
According to The American Journal of Medicine, as many as 10 million to 1 billion bacteria representing 278 different species may be exchanged during an active kiss. And passing bacteria back and forth may seem like the opposite of what you want to be doing — but in fact, it helps strengthen your immunity.
7. It Boosts Your Self Esteem
Andréa Demirjian, author of Kissing: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about One of Life's Sweetest Pleasures told CNN of a German study that found that men who got a good kiss from their wives before leaving for work, made more money. "If he leaves his home happy, he's more productive at work because he's not feeling emotionally distressed, so he's going to make more money," explained Demirjian. "Kissing has so much to do with your self-esteem and feeling loved and connected." As if you needed another reason to lock lips, right? Now you've got seven scientifically proven reasons to work on your kissing technique.