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12 Ways Sex Helps You Live Longer   [Copy link] 中文

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A healthy sex life is essential to a healthy life—and can even help you to live longer
By Elijah Wolfson



Is sex really that important? As more and more research is done on the subject, it's becoming clearer and clearer that having healthy sex is essential to a healthy life—and that sex can even help you to live longer. According to Dr. Irwin Goldstein, Director of Sexual Medicine at Alvarado Hospital, if you read the latest research, "you can't conclude anything else but that it's healthy to have sexual activity. At some level, god made us do this for reasons beyond reproduction. It makes us healthier, happier people; more physically active, mentally active, more alert, more hormonally responsive, more sensate, and more pleasant."
The research being done pinpoints a few very specific—and oftentimes surprising—health benefits that result from a healthy and active sex life. Healthline examines a dozen of the most proven and interesting of the lot.


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1. Fights colds and the flu  
According to a study done at Wilkes University, people who have sex a couple of times a week tend to have significantly higher amounts of the antibody immunoglobin A (IgA) than those who have sex less than once a week. What does that mean? "IgA is the first line of defense against colds and flu," says Carl Charnetski, one of the researchers on the Wilkes study.

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2. Burns calories
Sex increases blood flow, and gets your heart pumping. Simply put, sex is exercise, and it's more fun than running laps. Although sex doesn't burn a ton of calories—about 30 calories for every 20 minutes of moderately vigorous sex, according to Fitness magazine—it's still more exercise than you'd get sitting on the couch in front of your TV.

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3. Reduces risk of heart disease
Numerous studies have shown that an active sex life is closely correlated with longer life. Specifically, it seems like sex may lower the risk for heart attacks, strokes, and other heart diseases. An Irish study in 1997 found that by having sex three or more times a week, men reduced their risk of heart attack or stroke by half. More recently, in 2010, the New England Research Institute conducted a massive study proving that sex twice a week reduces risk of heart disease by 45 percent.

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4. Regulates hormone levels
Why should you care? Well, among other things, a healthy hormone profile promotes regular menstrual cycles and decreases negative menopause symptoms.

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5. Cures headaches and reduces physical pain
Next time your partner tries to use the old "not tonight, my head hurts" excuse, tell him or her that sex will actually help. How? During sex, the hormone oxytocin (which will come up again and again in this discussion) is released in your body, and oxytocin reduces pain. In a study published in the Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, volunteers who inhaled oxytocin vapor and then had their fingers pricked felt only half as much pain as others who did not inhale any oxytocin.

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6. Reduces stress and lowers blood pressure
Another benefit of the oxytocin released during orgasm: it calms the nerves. Studies done on lab rats have shown that oxytocin counteracts the effects of cortisol (a stress hormone). Sex also helps you sleep better. When he rolls over and starts snoring after a good bout in the bed, it's not just physical exhaustion. Oxytocin not only calms you down, but it also specifically promotes sleep.

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