Researchers and physicians are finally wising up to what some of us already knew: sex and orgasms are good for you. Specifically it is now being confirmed that sex and orgasm have positive effects on most of the major bodily processes.
Relieve Tension: The relaxation that typically follows orgasm is often one of the few times people actually allow themselves to completely relax and let go of the day’s stresses.
Help you sleep better: Following an orgasm men usually experience a quick drop in blood pressure and fall into sudden relaxation. For women the effect is more progressive but just as powerful. Consider orgasm as your own personal tranquilizer. Throw the Ambien out and overcome insomnia. Let the joyful release of endorphins take over and calm your body and mind.
Boost your immune system: With orgasm, DHEA is released and Dr. Theresa Crenshaw author of Alchemy of Love and Lust, says DHEA may be the most powerful chemical in our personal world. It helps balance the immune system, improves cognition, promotes bone growth, and maintains and repairs tissues, keeping your skin healthy and supple. It can mean less frequent colds and flu. In fact, Wilkes University in Pennsylvania says those who have sex once or twice a week show 30 percent higher levels of an antibody called immunoglobulin A, which is known to boost the immune system.
Reduce Depression: Many hormones are positively affected by the act of sex and orgasm, which can lead to a lighter mood. Another theory is proposed by psychologist Gordon Gallup who states that Prostaglandin, a hormone found in semen (which upon being absorbed in the female genital tract) may have led to 30 percent more of his female study participants to report feeling happier than the participants who did not have men ejaculate inside of them. So, he can apparently make you feel happy inside and out.
Help you eat better: Sexual stimulation activates the production of phenetylamine, a natural amphetamine that regulates your appetite. So start curbing those midnight cravings with a little midnight sex.
Strengthen your body: Muscle contraction as a form of exercise is generally good for any muscle. The muscle contraction associated with orgasm can also address issues such as erection problems and incontinence. When 178 Belgian men with minor erection problems participated in a four month daily rehabilitation program which primarily focused on Kegel exercises, 74 percent showed improvement and 43 percent reported they were cured. For women, Kegels strengthen the entire uro-genital tract, aid in easing childbirth, and prevents the onset of incontinence.
Alleviate Pain: Oxytocin should be everyone’s favorite hormone. When oxytocin is secreted in your body it helps release those wonderful endorphins we have been discussing. Because of these natural opiates, sex—and specifically orgasm—become a powerful analgesic, elevating the pain threshold. Orgasms can even help to relieve the pain of arthritis, whiplash, and headaches. Now that is a prescription everyone can follow.
Reduce your risk of heart disease: It is simple— by having sex three or more times per week, individuals reduce their risk of heart attack or stroke by half.
Increase blood flow: As fresh blood supply arrives, your cells, organs and muscles are saturated with fresh oxygen and hormones, and as the used blood is removed, you also remove waste products that cause fatigue and even illness. This can be contributed to all of that deep breathing and muscle contraction occurring up to and through orgasm.
Help you lose weight: There are 3,500 calories in a pound of fat. For every 3,500 calories you burn, you will lose one pound of fat. Sexual intercourse burns approximately 150 calories per half hour. In comparison, yoga uses 114 calories per half hour, dancing 129, walking at 3 mph burns 153, weight training also kicks 153, while volleyball burns 174. The pulse rate, in an aroused person, rises from about 70 beats per minute to 150, the same as that of an athlete putting forth maximum effort. And here’s a fun fact: British researchers have determined that the equivalent of six Big Macs can be worked off by having sex three times per week for a year.
Create healthier relationships: Oxytocin is also considered the bonding hormone— another reason to love it. It spikes three to five times higher than usual just before orgasm, actually triggering it. It can also be elevated through touch. Maybe that is why so many of us feel compelled to blurt out how much we love our partner at climax.
Help you to live longer: A British study of 1,000 people found those who had at least two orgasms per week had half the death rate of the rest of the country, which admitted to indulging in sex less than once per month. Live long and prosper.
Dr. Kat Van Kirk is a Clinical Sexologist and Relationship Therapist who is a Yoga Alliance certified teacher/therapist. Visit www.drkat.com and listen to her free iTunes podcast Sex Chat with Dr. Kat and Her Gay Boyfriend.