So much emphasis is placed on kissing. How important is that first kiss? Will the culmination of your first date end with a kiss? Will the kiss be gentle or hungry and passionate? In a blooming relationship, the kiss just may be more celebrated than sex itself. So, what’s really in a kiss? Are there any benefits to kissing? This blog is meant to call attention to the documented, physical benefits of kissing, independent of the (emotional) romantic benefit.
In an article published by Psychology Today, the author explored a study performed at Arizona State University by a professor, Kory Floyd. In this study, they sampled 52 married or cohabiting couples. The researcher assigned approximately 26 couples to the experimental group which were assigned to kiss more frequently and for longer periods of time than usual. The other 26 couples in the control group were given no instructions for kissing, nor did they know the purpose of the experimental (blind control). The lab assistants were also ‘blind’ to which couples were the control participants and which couples were the experimental participants in order to eliminate any possible bias while compiling the data. Therefore it was a double blind experiment.
At the end of the study, the experimental group said they felt less stress and greater contentment in their relationships. Physical lab tests showed a decreased level of (bad) cholesterol then their baseline levels. The control group displayed no such benefit.
According to another article, kissing boosts immunity as well. A Dutch researcher, Remco Kort performed a study on 21 couples. They filled out a questionnaire, provided saliva samples before and after a kiss, and then ate yogurt with markers to count the number of bacteria transferred. They found that couples that kissed frequently shared similar gut bacteria compared to individuals that kissed infrequently or not at all. Kort concluded that it was healthy to kiss because it exposed you to a greater variety of bacteria, which would increase physical resistance. In other words, kissing is similar to taking a probiotic that would boost your immune system.
In conclusion, is kissing good for your health? Well I wouldn’t go around kissing just anybody. After all the threat of communicable disease still looms over you. Also the results seem to revolve around couples, not random hook-ups. Physically, there seem to be many benefits to kissing. So couples keep smooching, just be sure to get a room!