Valentines Day is fast approaching and I’ll get to the mushy-gushy benefits of love later this week, but I thought we’d start the week off with something a little more light-headed today; I’m talking about sex. There may be more health benefits to sex than just exercise and calories burned. Although sex seems still today to be taboo to talk about. Joy Davidson, a psychologist and sex theropist says, “Of course, sex is everywhere in the media,” she says. “But the idea that we are vital, sexual creatures is still looked at in some cases with disgust or in other cases a bit of embarrassment. So to really take a look at how our sexuality adds to our life and enhances our life and our health, both physical and psychological, is eye-opening for many people.” Benefits include:
- Studies have shown that men who have sex at least twice a week are half as likely to die as men who had sex less than once a month
- regular sex for men promotes prostate health (and reduces the risk for cancer, especially for men in their 20’s).
- It increases estrogen levels for women, promoting a healthy heart
- Women and men both benefit from the emotional intimacy during sex, which eases stress and helps with an overall sense of well-being.
- Dr. David Weeks says that couples with a healthy sex life can look up to 7 years younger than those who aren’t intimate.
- Sex 1-2 times a week has been linked to higher levels of immunoglobin A, IgA (an antibody), which can protect against cold contraction and other infections.
- Sex and orgasm can increase the hormone oxytocin (love hormone) which helps bond and build trust. It is also linked with feelings of generosity. The surge of oxytocin increases endorphins and pain decreases. Lastly oxytocin promotes sleep, which we all know is associated with a slew of other health benefits.
- Self-esteem: “One of the reasons people say they have sex is to feel good about themselves. Great sex begins with self-esteem, and it raises it. If the sex is loving, connected, and what you want, it raises it.”
I’m not promoting going out and having one night stands. Most of these studies were done on couples from monogomous relationships. But getting some definitely has its benefits.