Is sex good for you?

The Wall Street Journal just did a story on the benefits of . At a high level, the conclusion was that more was good for you. Obviously, this has to be conditioned upon that the partners in the act are adults, the is consensual, and that the goal is to have a loving bond. There is also the condition that both partners are healthy to begin with and they are taking appropriate steps to not transmit diseases to each other.

Does this really surprise anyone? Would anyone think that LESS SEX is better for you than MORE SEX?

Here are a few excerpts from the article:

A flurry of small studies suggest that sex is as good for your health as vitamin D and broccoli. It not only relieves stress, improves sleep and burns calories, it can also reduce pain, ease depression, strengthen blood vessels, boost the immune system and lower the risk of prostate and breast cancer.

 

Much of that is due to chemistry—the rush of hormones and neurotransmitters that rise and fall during sexual activity. Arousal boosts dopamine, which activates the brain’s centers of craving and reward "just like chocolate and winning at gambling," says Erick Janssen, a senior scientist at the Kinsey Institute at Indiana University.

Sex also increases oxytocin, known as the "cuddle hormone," which promotes bonding, reduces fear and stimulates endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers, which is why sex can bring temporary relief from back pain, migraines and other body aches.

 

All together, this chemical cascade has a lasting effect that helps people handle stress, which Dr. Brody showed in a study in the journal Biological Psychology in 2005. He had 24 women and 22 men keep diaries of their sexual activities for two weeks, then took their blood pressure while they were told to give an impromptu speech to a hostile audience and do rapid math calculations in their heads. Those who had had traditional sexual intercourse during the fortnight had smaller blood pressure spikes and recovered more quickly than those who engaged in other forms of sex or none at all.

 

Frequent sex may benefit men’s health another way: by boosting testosterone, which in turn is linked to stronger muscles, more energy and better cognition. (Sex’s effect on testosterone was shown in a now-famous article in Nature in 1970. A man stranded on a remote island with no women saw his beard stop growing. Then it resumed when he returned to civilization and sex again.)

 

Several studies also suggest that having sex extends life in general. A study in the British Medical Journal found that men who had sex less than once per month were twice as likely to die in the next 10 years than those who had sex once per week. A 25-year study of 270 men and women aged 60 to 96 conducted at Duke University found that the more men had sex, the longer they lived. Women who said they enjoyed their sex lives lived seven to eight years longer than those who were indifferent. But factors such as intelligence, health and activities also played a role in living longer, too.

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