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7 Ways that sex is good for you

7 Ways that sex is good for you

Frequent sex increases your libido, strengthens your immune system, relieves stress, eases pain and triggers the release of chemicals that improve your mood. Here are seven of the top health reasons to embrace sex with gusto 

In secondary school sex-ed we were told that sex is integral to every healthy, romantic adult relationship. Not only is that not necessarily true—there are many other ways of expressing intimacy—we were also kept in the dark about the numerous health benefits of sex. It can also help us maintain a healthy weight and heart...just in case you needed a few more reasons to justify getting frisky in the sheets. 

1. You'll look younger 

A good sex life is a key to youthful looks, according to a study of 3,500 people aged 18-102 conducted by the Royal Edinburgh Hospital in Scotland. Researchers attributed this to reductions in stress, greater contentment and. better sleep, all of which are also associated with sexual activity. 

2. It can help your body fight disease 

Engaging in sex once or twice a week produces 30 per cent higher levels of immunoglobulin A, which boosts your body's immune system. Scientists have also found that having an active sex life may even lower your risk of developing cancer, heart disease and stroke. On top of all that, it's a remedy for colds and flu. 

"Having an active sex life may even lower your risk of developing cancer, heart disease and stroke"

3. It burns calories 

Low shot of a couple's legs stood together with underwear on the floor and a glass of wine Credit: kieferpix

Like any exercise, sexual intercourse burns fat and calories—about 96 calories in 20 minutes for a 150 lb person. That means it'll burn off the calories from that extra glass of wine at dinner (which may have been what put you in the mood in the first place!) 

4. It reduces pain 

Studies show that vaginal stimulation results in increased pain tolerance, and pleasurable self-stimulation of the clitoris also has an analgesic effect. Researchers report that this type of stimulation can ease the pain of menstrual cramps, arthritis, migraine and other conditions. 

5. It helps you to breathe easier 

A woman holding her nose on a sofa Credit: Meeko Media

Sex is reputedly a natural antihistamine, helping to combat hay fever and asthma symptoms. 

6. It helps you to live longer—if you do it often enough 

A Welsh longitudinal study examined the relationship between mortality and frequency of sexual activity. Researchers found that the risk of dying in any one year was 50 per cent lower among men who had sex twice or more a week than among men who had sex less than once a month. Even when taking into consideration factors such as age, social class and smoking status. the study concluded that the more sex, the better. 

"The risk of dying in any one year was 50 per cent lower among men who had sex twice or more a week than among men who had sex less than once a month"

7. It promotes a feeling of well-being 

A woman doing a thumbs up from underneath a duvet Credit: lolostock

Sexual activity fosters everything from sexual and reproductive health to happiness. And one US study of more than 1,000 people found that surges in oxytocin and endorphins (which have an apparent sedative effect) occured as a result of orgasm, explaining why sex often leads to falling asleep. 

Banner credit: Alessandro Biascioli

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