Last week, NBC’s TODAY show had a Valentine’s Day segment about three couples who took scientific tests to find out if their love is true. A portion of the segment was filmed at the beautiful Olivia Restaurant in Burbank, California. “Love is chemical,” says Paul Zak, president of ZestX and also known as Dr. Love, who runs a “love lab” at Claremont Graduate University. “We can measure brain activity and find out who not only is attracted to each other, but who’s long-term compatible with each other.”
Paul Zak is a scientist, prolific author, and public speaker. His current work applies neuroscience to improve marketing and consumer experiences, and to build high performance organizations. Zak’s lab has worked with Fortune 500 companies and advertising agencies, and they have even worked with DARPA to create interview strategies for soldiers.
The three couples in the love test segment were Kathy and Jack, married for 48 years; Reeyaz and Dawn, who recently got engaged; and Kristen and Josh, who met on a blind date. These couples took three tests.
The Zest Test: Researchers wired each couple with sensors to track their heartbeats, measure how much they were sweating, and monitor their levels of oxytocin — the chemical released when you trust someone — in real time.
The Visual Attention Test: The participants wore special goggles that tracked their eye movements as they were shown two images side by side: the person each came with, and an attractive stranger.
The Smell Test: After the couples exercised to work up a sweat, they were blindfolded. The male participants smelled each of the women and the female participants each of the men to see who they were attracted to most.
Watch the love test segment:
A few behind the scenes tapping photos that took place at Olivia Restaurant:
[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]
Something interesting to note: Reader’s Digest published a survey based on 80,000 people from around the world that author Chrisanna Northrup had interviewed in order to gather quantitative data and marriage statistics on love, trust and so much more. These were the intriguing findings of the survey:
- Men are much more likely than women—48% vs. 28%—to fall in love at first sight.
- 33% more men than women around the world say it bothers them “a lot” that their significant other isn’t more romantic.
- 57% of those in unhappy relationships still find their partner extremely attractive.
- Nearly 60% of both men and women who were unhappy with their relationships say they would still be happy to spend eternity with their partners.
- More than 33% of men and women say they have watched a TV show or movie that affected them so much they considered breaking up.
- The richest couples surveyed were less likely to be happy than those with less money.