Here and now I have the science of love. This is what the latest research tells us about some of the mysteries of love and romance: 

  • Mystery #1: Why do we love the people we love? According to anthropologist Helen Fisher, most of attraction is based on what we have in common, like our looks or financial status, for example. That’s because we feel more connected to someone with whom we share a common background or interests. But on a chemical level, Fisher says we’re generally attracted to people who are different than us. Because research shows that when people with opposite genes attract, their offspring tends to have more genetic variety, which makes them more likely to survive.

  • The next love mystery: Can you really be ADDICTED to love? Absolutely! In fact, many studies show that when you first fall in love, your brain is flooded with feel-good chemicals, called dopamine, at levels similar to what drug addicts experience. That explains why a new romance can disrupt your appetite and your sleep. 

  • What about when physical attraction wears off? Why do people STAY in love? I know it sounds obvious, but researchers say it boils down to the little things, like holding hands, or planning surprise weekends together. Because research shows that long after hormone levels drop back to normal, physical contact and “novelty” can still drive up your dopamine levels, and keep a romantic spark alive.