Sexual Health Affects Overall Health

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Dr. Laura Trice is the head cookie cutter and CEO of Laura's Wholesome Junk Food in Venice, California, ad the author of The Wholesome Junk Food Cookbook, one of Natural Solutions' Top Cookbooks of 2010.

I am a very big advocate of getting back to the way nature intended things. Let’s talk about sexual health in the terms of what constitutes taking care of oneself sexually. We all know about pap smears and safe sex, but Love and Orgasm by Alexander Lowen, MD, had some interesting insights about healthy sexuality. It is slow reading and took over 2 months for me to read it. After reading his Betrayal of the Body, I was interested in his approach of the body demonstrating health. As a psychiatrist, he spent his life studying the human body and how our mental and emotional health was tied into our physical well being.

Having gone to medical school and having read quite a few books about bodies, I thought I was well informed about the variety of opinions about sexuality. Love and Orgasm was published in the 70’s and the information was foreign to me. Lowen spoke of how sexual sophistication, which is often confused with sexual maturity, is not the same thing as sexual maturity. He stated that sexual sophisticates are much more concerned with what others think and view sex as a performance that must happen in a certain way. For example, a man unable to get an erection may have work stress, a health issue or simply not currently be feeling attracted to his partner. These are all acceptable realities with sexual maturity as it can be addressed and worked on.

In sexual sophistication, inability to perform as a man or a woman is a failure. What Lowen looked at was the absolute connection between love and commitment and sexual health and satisfaction. He found sexually healthy people to be joyful. He found the happiest individuals were more concerned with the connection with their partner than achieving any particular bells, whistles, feats or number of orgasms. What the book emphasized was how critically important it is to always honor our bodies, say “No” to things that make us uncomfortable, and never sexually self-sacrifice for another, as it only does harm all the way around. His writing and observations on the very important role of love felt spot on. I am a second level clinical coach who has trained with The Want Institutein relationship communication, and I have spent years and thousands of hours studying relationships. Having heard hundreds of people talk about sexuality and read extensively on it, I mistakenly felt somewhat informed.

Lowen disagreed with mainstream ideas, such as the absolute importance of extending intercourse and prolonging orgasm in the name of pleasure, the idea of risk taking or achieving a high number of orgasms as leading to satisfaction and the over emphasis on sensuality as opposed to allowing a natural flow from fore-pleasure into intercourse and release. I really like the idea that we each have something guiding us to our natural best. Lowen made an observation that a woman who couldn’t say “No” to sex she didn’t want and just submitted, often lost her will to stand up for other important boundaries.

For a wonderful blend of physical and emotional health, I encourage every woman to buy a book by Christiane Northrup, MD, called Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom. It is a wonderful handbook written by an OB/Gyn who I had the good fortune to train with. She offers so many insights as to how to take care of your body, heart and soul.

How we take care of our bodies with regards to sexuality is the template for how we will impact others. So, let’s all take really good care of our bodies and allow that health to radiate from us.

Dr. Laura Trice is the CEO of Laura’s Wholesome Junk Food and author of The Wholesome Junk Food Cookbook. Her passion is making delicious healthy cookies and snack recipes that everyone can enjoy. She regularly blogs for the Huffington Post and has been a speaker at past TED Conferences. Dr. Trice is also a second level clinical coach trained with The Want Institute in relationship communication.www.lauraswholesomejunkfood.com