For those with allergies, spring brings a runny nose, itchy eyes, uncontrollable sneezing and an insatiable hatred for pollen. Fortunately, those who love to swap spit can kiss their allergies good-bye—literally.
According to a study conducted by Dr. Hajime Kimata, from the Unitika Hospital, Kyoto, Japan, 30 minutes of kissing can dramatically reduce the allergic reaction to pollen. Twenty-four men and women with hay fever were told to kiss their partners for half an hour. Before and after the experiment, blood samples were taken to test the levels of immunoglobulin E (IgE), which triggers symptoms of asthma and hay fever by releasing histamine into the blood. Kimata suggests that the significant drop in IgE levels could be attributed to the relaxation induced by kissing.
This isn’t the first ostensibly wacky claim Kimata has made—in a 2001 study, Kimata claimed to have found that laughter also alleviates allergic reactions. Allergy patients who were told to watch the Charlie Chaplin flick “Modern Times” saw a decrease in the size of skin welts while those who watched a video on weather experienced no change.
Kimata’s research also shows incentives for those who kiss and don’t tell. A study of 52 patients with a history of allergies shows that talking on mobile phones increases allergy levels. Kimata initially found evidence that cellular phone ringtones triggered skin allergies, but more recently reports that the exposure to microwaves is the cause.
Are your allergies bad enough to risk getting mono, losing your cellphone, or sitting through silent film comedies? It’s your call.