cOutside of the probable immediate pleasure, sexual activity (especially on a regular basis) has some other surprising health benefits! Sexual activity, whether intercourse or masturbation, can offer many benefits to all facets of your life – Including physical, intellectual, emotional, psychological and social advantages.
So, here are the top 10 health benefits of having sex, whether it is by yourself or with a partner!
#1. Can Improve Your Cardiovascular Health
One great thing about sex is that it can improve your cardiovascular health by not only lowering your blood pressure but strengthening muscles, burning calories and increasing heart health. Overall, it helps reduce risk of heart disease, stroke and hypertension. (1)
Individuals with active sex lives tend to exercise more frequently and have better dietary habits than those who are less sexually active. Research shows that physical fitness may also improve sexual performance overall (1). So to support a healthy heart and great sex, remember to exercise regularly.
#2 Burn Calories
If you are someone that doesn’t like working out at the gym, maybe “working out in the bedroom” might be a better and more fun approach! In a 2013 study, 21 heterosexual couples were asked to wear SenseWear fitness trackers during their lovemaking to determine how many calories were burned. The results concluded that men burn 100 calories during the average sex session (about 25 minutes), while women burn about 69 calories (2). Harvard medical school reported that sex burns about five calories per minute.
#3 Reduce Pain
Believe it or not, sex can help relieve pain. A review of peer‐reviewed literature on the associations between distinct sexual activities and various factors of psychological and physical function found having an orgasm increases blood flow, and releases endorphins and other natural pain-relieving chemicals (3).
Another study showed how engaging in sexual activity during a headache attack can positively impact headache intensity. The results of the study found: 60 percent reported an improvement during a migraine, 70 percent reported moderate to complete relief during a migraine, 37 percent reported improvement of symptoms in cluster headaches, 91 percent reported moderate to complete relief in cluster headaches (4). So…. in reality the old “oh sorry honey, I have a headache” should maybe be replaced by “Honey, I have a headache, let’s have sex!”
#5. Reduce Risk of Prostate Cancer
Research shows that there could be relation between regular sex and reduction in prostate cancer. One study found that men who averaged having 4.6 to 7 ejaculations (from sex or on their own) a week were 36% less likely to receive a prostate cancer diagnosis before the age of 70. This is in comparison to men who reported ejaculating 2.3 or fewer times a week on average (5).
#6. Increase Life Expectancy
For men, sex may even affect their mortality. One study that had a 10-year follow-up reported that men who had frequent orgasms (defined as two or more a week) had a 50 percent lower mortality risk than those who had sex less often (6).
#7. Look Younger
Research is showing that frequent sexual activity, whether with a partner or alone, can make you look younger. This is partially due to the release of estrogen during sex. Estrogen helps skin stay hydrated by boosting hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a clear, gooey substance that is naturally produced by your body. Its main function is to retain water to keep your tissues well lubricated and moist (keeps skin looking young).
A 1997 study of 3,875 postmenopausal women concluded that estrogen supplementation helped aging women have younger looking skin and also helped maintained skin’s collagen matrix, thickness, elasticity and ability to retain moisture (7).
Another study found a correlation between frequent sexual activity and looking significantly – up to seven to 12 years – younger (8).
#8. Improve Memory with Age
At an older age, sexual activity may affect your well-being and ability to think. Research found that sexually active adults between 50 to 90 years old had better memory. They were also less likely to feel depressed and lonely (9).
#9 Increase the Bond in a Relationship
Morning sex can bring you and your partner closer together. How so? Sex produces oxytocin, also known as the “love hormone.” Oxytocin is the chemical in the brain that controls bonding and love. When it’s released during sex, the result is feeling more connected to your partner (10).
#10: Boost Your Immune System
Reduced stress helps to support a healthy immune system, and sex can be a natural stress reliever due to the endorphins and oxytocin produced. But researchers discovered that sex can support your immunity further by triggering your body’s natural defences against bacteria, viruses, and other germs. So, “get busy” to boost your immune system! (11)
So, if you needed a few reasons to prioritize sex more often – that wraps up our top 10 health benefits of sex! Which one has you convinced to spend a little more time “in the bedroom”?