Why being in love can make you lose your appetite

Most have heard that 'love is patient' and 'love is kind'. Perhaps 'love is a giant appetite suppressant' isn't quoted as often — but it's true. That walking-on-air feeling may be caused by your stomach being more full of butterflies than of actual food if you're currently falling (or are newly) in love. There are plenty of fun expressions we can use to describe the lighter feeling that comes with love, but the truth is, there is a scientific explanation for it.

Kat Van Kirk, Ph.D., a clinical sexologist and licensed marriage and family therapist, tells CNN one of the reasons why a person newly in love can lose their appetite. "Lovesickness may actually be the stress hormone cortisol contracting the blood vessels in your stomach, making you feel sick," she says. So that uneasy, jittery feeling you have around the time you're falling in love isn't all in your head. It appears a lot of it is in your stomach as well, and it's no friend of your appetite. 

Oxytocin plays a big role as an appetite suppressant

Insider reports a study conducted by eHarmony found that one of the initial symptoms of falling in love is a loss of appetite. The study also found lack of concentration and increased libido to be other common symptoms. These certainly sound more fun, though, than a cramping stomach.

We know now that the stress hormone cortisol can create a real case of lovesickness, but there is also another chemical responsible for what previously seemed like an impossible ability to skip dessert. CNN states that when falling in love, the body experiences a surge of oxytocin, and according to Paleoleap, the production of oxytocin in our bodies plays a huge part in both regulating body weight and our appetites. One study showed that when males were given oxytocin while eating, it increased the level of "appetite-reducing hormones" and decreased their calorie intake.

So don't be alarmed by your sudden blasé relationship with food. Chances are you would rather focus on a new relationship with a special someone instead.