7 Health Benefits of Sex!
More time in the bedroom is the prescription for living longer and looking younger, according to Dr. Nicholas Sieveking, a double board-certified plastic surgeon and anti-aging/functional medicine specialist based in Nashville. “Studies show that sexually active people have health benefits that carry them into their later years,” says Sieveking, who breaks the benefits down to seven reasons to have more sex:
- Erase wrinkles. “A healthy sex life normalizes cortisol levels and other inflammatory mediators such as cytokines and interleukins,” Sieveking says. “This relaxes us and helps stimulate normal growth hormone levels and other sex hormones such as testosterone. It’s scientific truth that growth hormone and testosterone help repair damaged skin, erase wrinkles and stimulate collagen regeneration, giving you an overall younger and healthier appearance.”
- Sharpen your memory. To sustain mental agility, we’re told to do puzzles and eat a lot of leafy greens, nuts, legumes and fish rich in omega 3s. Add sex to that list! Sex tends to enhance sleep quality, which gives your cells an opportunity for turnover and repair. Sieveking reports, “Especially in women, studies show that memory improves as growth hormone and testosterone levels increase and become balanced.”
- Lower risk of serious disease. “Maintaining adequate levels and hormonal balance reduces the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, dementia and stroke,” Sieveking notes. “It also helps to maintain muscle and bone strength.”
- Reduce stress. Often referred to as the “cuddle hormone,” oxytocin floods the brain when we have sex. “This is what gives us that sleepy, relaxed feeling after sex,” Sieveking says. A second hormone, prolactin, kicks in that desire to breathe deeply and fall into a peaceful slumber.
- Reduce pain. Another benefit of oxytocin is that it alleviates pain. It’s one of the hormones naturally released during labor.
- Curb your appetite. Phenetylamine is yet another natural hormone produced during sex. Sieveking explains that this hormone serves as a natural amphetamine that eases food cravings and regulates appetite. Schedule sex in the morning or before dinner, and you may feel like eating less!
- Boost immunity. Immunoglobin A, our own immune-system-boosting antibody, is enhanced during sex, while the powerful chemical DHEA is released during orgasm. This “superhero chemical” balances the immune system and helps to repair tissue.
Have sex as if your life depended on it, Sieveking advises, because that actually may be the case.