Sex is good for you. I bet you already knew or suspected that. What may have been anecdotal evidence on your part can now be backed up with studies on the benefits of regular sex ranging from improving immunity to cardiovascular benefits and of course good old mood enhancement and overall happiness.
The taboo around sex has led to a forced separation of sexuality and the rest of life. Sex and sexuality, however, are a key part of life and sexual health is more than just avoiding diseases and unplanned pregnancies. It is also recognizing that sex can be an important and beneficial part of life. Sexual activity or masturbation can offer many surprising benefits to all facets of life including the physical, intellectual, emotional, psychological, and social.
1. Improves immunity
It turns out that participating in sex one or two times per week helps boost the immune system. One study found that people who had sex once or twice per week had a 30% increase in IgA (an antibody that shows how tough the immune system is) compared to those who don’t. Sexually active people are also exposed to infectious agents more than those who are not. This constant exposure forces their immune systems to respond against the infectious agents, strengthening it overall.
Another study found that university students who have sex once or twice a week had higher levels of a certain antibody compared to those who did not.
2. Cardiovascular benefits
Physical activity is good for the heart and sex counts as a workout. Sexual activity is equivalent to moderate physical activities like brisk walking or climbing two flights of stairs. Just like an intense workout, being sexually aroused increases the heart rate with the number of beats per minute peaking during orgasm.
One study found that men in their 50’s who had sex at least twice per week have a reduced risk of heart disease compared to men who have sex less frequently.
3. Lowers blood pressure
Research suggests a link between sex and lower blood pressure with one landmark study finding that sexual intercourse specifically, not masturbation, lowered systolic blood pressure. High blood pressure increases the risk of heart attack and stroke and can also lead to erectile dysfunction and lower libido in men.
This is especially true for women with one study finding that women between 57 and 85 years who were sexually active were less likely to have hypertension.
4. Boosts libido
Want to have better sex? Have more sex. Practice practice practice. Researchers say having more sex will make sex better and improve libido. For women, in particular, having sex ups vaginal lubrication, blood flow, and elasticity all of which make sex feel better and help you crave more of it.
5. Reduces the risk of prostate cancer
One study found that men who ejaculate at least 21 times per month were a third less likely to develop prostate cancer.
6. Improves women’s bladder control
A strong pelvic floor is important for avoiding incontinence, something that will affect about 30% of women at some point in their lives. Good sex is like a workout for the pelvic floor muscles. When one has an orgasm, it causes contractions in those muscles, strengthening them.
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7. Relieves pain
Despite a headache being the most cliché reason to avoid sex, neurologists have found that sexual activity can relieve head pain associated with a migraine or cluster headache. One study found that 60% of individuals with migraines reported an improvement in pain after sexual activity.
Sex can trigger the release of endorphins which are the body’s natural pain killers. Another study found that women were found to experience reduced pain sensitivity and had an increased pain tolerance threshold when experience pleasure through vaginal self-stimulation.
8. Boosts brain power
Research suggests that frequent sex may improve women’s memory. In a study, women who had penetrative sex had better memory recognition.
9. Menstrual benefits
Frequent intercourse is associated with lighter menstrual periods and less painful period cramps.
10. Increases lifespan
It turns out having regular sex can prolong your life. In a medical study involving telomeres which are DNA strand protectors that indicate the likelihood of developing degenerative diseases or dying young, researchers found that women who had sexual relations at least once a week had significantly longer telomeres. The shorter the telomeres, the higher the likelihood of developing a degenerative disease or dying young.
- Better self-esteem: sex can boost self-esteem and reduce feelings of insecurity, leading to more positive self-perception.
- Higher rates of happiness: a study in China found that consensual sex and better quality sex increase happiness.
- Stress relief: sex can be an effective stress management technique. It reduces stress hormones with effects lasting well into the day. Being close to your partner can also soothe stress and anxiety.
- More bonding for the couple: endorphins and other brain chemicals released during sex decrease irritability and feelings of depression. Oxytocin, also known as the hug drug increases with nipple stimulation and other sexual activity. Oxytocin helps foster a sense of calmness and contentment. Relationships: Benefits Of Changing Sex Positions Frequently
- Improved sleep quality: orgasms trigger the release of the hormone prolactin which aids in sleep by increasing feelings of relaxation and drowsiness. Better sleep can contribute to a stronger immune system, a longer lifespan, feeling well-rested, and having more energy during the day.
Evidently, sex is an all-around winner. If you ever needed science-backed excuses to have more sex, you’re welcome.
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