Passionate feelings of love activate reward systems in the brain and can block the sensation of pain, according to neuroimaging research published this week by Stanford professor Sean Mackey, MD, PhD.
The image above above is an fMRI scan from Mackey's study. It shows the brain of a study subject exposed to acute experimental thermal pain, as he or she is viewing pictures of a loved one. Not sure what the colors mean? It's complicated; check out the study for explanation.