Here are 10 benefits of sex that you may not have known about. Soon’t go to bed with a good book – take your partner.
1 Sex helps you stay thin
A 30-minute session burns around 420 kilojoules – do it five times a week and that’s 3kgs gone in 12 months. But that’s not the only body boost. “When you’re having regular sex, food thoughts get replaced with sex thoughts, which reduces mindless munching,” says Kerry McCloskey, author of The Ultimate Sex Diet (Berkley Publishing).
2 Sex ups your self-esteem
The feel-good factor isn’t simply physical. Good sex can enhance your self-image and improve your self-esteem. “What could make you feel better about your body than a partner getting pleasure from it?” says vitality coach Alyssa Abbey.
3 Sex bolsters bladder control
The internal movements you make during sex are like the Kegel exercises doctors recommend you do to keep the pelvic floor firm, explains sexual health specialist Dr Catherine Hood. “The more you tone the pelvic floor, the better sex becomes,” she says. “On days you’re not making love, contract the muscles 10 times quickly, 10 slowly, three times a day.”
4 Sex staves off the sniffles
Researchers have found that levels of IgA immunity cells rise by 30% when couples have sex once or twice a week. Other immune fighters, called natural killer cells, increase during intercourse. Experts speculate (brace yourself) that this is because our body is trying to protect us against germs from our partner’s skin, saliva and semen.
5 Sex is a sleep aid
Orgasm causes the release of the hormones oxytocin, vasopressin and prolactin, which make us tired. It is a fact that the older we get, the harder orgasm can be to achieve. “You may need more foreplay to get aroused,” says Dr Catherine Hood. “So make sure your partner doesn’t skip that bit.”
6 Sex eases migraines
Forget that old “I’ve got a headache” excuse – research shows that a third of migraine sufferers who get frisky during the warning signs of an attack report feeling less pain, fatigue and moodiness during their headache. For 12%, sex stops the headache in its tracks.
7 Sex may make your man live longer
Men having three orgasms a week cut their risk of heart attack by 50%, according to recent research. And men who ejaculate 21 times a month halve their risk of prostate cancer. Researchers think that it’s possible that frequent ejaculation flushes the prostate of potentially harmful chemicals.
8 Sex fights wrinkles
Women having sex four times a week look up to 10 years younger than other women, according to new research. This is partly because sex increases circulation. But also, during intercourse your body releases a substance called insulin-like growth factor, which helps the body maintain the muscles that keep the face firm.
9 Sex soothes stress
Recent trials revealed that people who’d recently had sex had lower blood pressure while doing stressful tasks than others. One reason could be that intercourse stimulates a nerve called the vagus, which is associated with lowered heart rate and blood pressure levels.
10 Sex may make menopause easier
Studies have shown that menopausal women having sex at least once a week have fewer hot flushes. “This might be because their oestrogen levels are about twice as high as less sexually active women,” explains Dr Sarah Brewer. “This oestrogen boost may also protect against heart disease and osteoporosis.”
DISCLAIMER: You must not rely on the information on this website/newsletter as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.