Sex is a natural and healthy activity that has a range of health benefits you may not be aware of. It not only feels good, it can also be good for you! So let’s find out how a little loving can boost your overall health in a range of surprising ways.
Sex counts as exercise!
While sex won’t replace a trip to the gym, it still counts as exercise. Sex increases heart rate and engages a wide range of muscles. One study showed that sex burns about 3.5 calories per minute, which is about the equivalent of walking at a moderate pace. So, while it’s no substitute for a high-intensity workout, it’s better than nothing. Plus you’re having sex.
If you want to get more of a workout from our sex session, there are some things you can do to increase the energy expenditure and get the heart working harder. Try increasing your stamina and going for longer. You can also crank up the heating and get your sexy sweat on. You can also get adventurous and try out some more difficult positions. This is a great way to keep things interesting with your partner while working out a different range of muscles.
Good for heart health
Regular sex, just like regular exerise, can also be good for heart health. Besides increasing heart rate and giving you a good cardio workout, sex can help to keep estrogen and testosterone levels in balance, which is vital for good heart health.
Regular sexual activity can also help to lower blood pressureand reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. A study published in the American Journal of Cardiology found that men who had sex regularly (at least twice a week) were less likely to develop heart disease compared with men who only had sex once per month.
Good for immune system
Having sex doesn’t just feel good, it can also help to keep you healthy. A study published in Psychological Reports found that people who have regular sex (once or twice per week) had a 30% increase in Immunoglobulin A (IgA), an antibody that plays a crucial role in immune function.
Orgasms release the hormones oxytocin and prolactin, which are strongly linked to satiety, relaxation, and sleepiness. This is believed to account for that satisfied and drowsy feeling that comes after sex. So don’t be surprised if you and your partner doze off after an intimate session.
Reduce stress and improve mood
Sex can help to reduce stress and improve your mood by releasing endorphins and other “happy” hormones.
A study published in Biological Psychology found that people who have regular sex had lower stress-related blood pressure than individuals who had masturbated or had non-coital sex.
Another study looked at women’s heart rate and cortisol levels as a measure of stress response and found that women exhibited less of a stress response after ‘positive physical contact’ with a partner.
What about people without a partner?
So what about all the singles out there? Well there’s always masturbation or even a little adult entertainment to get the juices flowing. Masturbation won’t stimulate the release of as many of the happy hormones that partnered sex will. And unless you’re particularly energetic, it also won’t be as much of a physical workout. However, it can help to reduce stress, lower blood pressure and improve sleep.
While sex can be great for your health, it’s also important to remember the risks and always practice safe sex.