Does It Feel Good To Give? Have Jorge Moll Explain

February 6th, 2018

Is giving to others as good as food and sex? How does our brain react when we give to others? These findings may surprise you.

Jorge Moll, an extremely accomplished neurologist, has come across evidence that may surprise you. Altruism has been thought to be a superior moral value. Does the act of altruism affect the brain?

Jorge Moll and his colleague Jordan Grafman came across very astonishing findings when they studied the effects of helping others had on the human mind, check this out. They found that when their subjects gave money away to charity, a portion of their brain associated with reward had a profound reaction.

Jorge Moll and his team’s findings showed there is a relationship between giving away money and feelings of reward. When the subjects gave away money, reward pathways in their brain would light up strongly, click this.

To study this effect, subjects underwent an experiment that involved giving away money to charities for issues such as abortion, euthanasia, nuclear power, war, and the death penalty. When giving money away, an area of the brain known as the prefrontal cortex would light up. This area of the brain is associated with reward.

What is more interesting, is more reward was shown when giving, rather than receiving. The reward pathways in the brain associated with reward would light up even brighter when giving away rather than receiving. Discover more here on loop.frontiersin.org.

This is the same type of reward that is associated with eating food or having sex! At the biological level, the brain finds pleasure in giving and helping others, and the same neurotransmitters are released.

This study wasn’t alone. Further studies showed very similar results. Rewarding behavior was recognized as a “warm glow”. This warm glow was present even when giving was considered mandatory. The warm glow has also been referred to as a “helper’s high”, watch this!

Overall, Jorge Moll and his team were pioneers in the study of how the brain reacts when giving. Altruism is hard-wired into our each one of our brains, not simply a superior moral value. Jorge Moll found that giving to others can make us feel good!

 

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