The 8 health benefits of sex

Joanne Hart for HelloDoctor.com

The perks of sex extend well beyond the bedroom, and it does actually have many health benefits to boot!

1. It lowers your blood pressure
Regular sex can help lower stress levels and blood pressure, so if you actually needed an excuse, there it is. In fact, people who have sex respond better to stress than those who engage in other sexual behaviours or abstain from sex altogether. In another study, researchers found that people who live together and have regular sex also have lower blood pressure.

2. It boosts immunity
Having sex once or twice a week has been linked with higher levels of antibodies called immunoglobulin A, which can protect you from common infections such as colds and flu.

3. It keeps your heart strong
A long-term British study showed that men who had sex two or more times a week were half as likely to have a fatal heart attack than men who had sex less than once a month. And, although older folks might worry that sex could cause a stroke, the study also found that there wasn’t a link between how often men had sex and how likely they were to have a stroke.

4. It improves your self-esteem
You don’t have to have sex daily to feel good about yourself, but a healthy sex life can really boost your self-esteem and confidence levels.

5. It deepens intimacy
Having sex and climaxing releases oxytocin – aka the ‘love hormone’. The hormone has been linked to increased bonds and trust between people, plus higher oxytocin levels have also been linked with feelings of generosity.

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6. It can reduce pain 
Oxytocin doesn’t just leave you feeling all loved up, it also boosts your body’s painkillers, called endorphins. This is why if you struggle with arthritis, headaches or PMS symptoms, they might not be as painful if you’ve just had sex.

7. More ejaculations, lower prostate cancer risk
According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, men who have 21 or more ejaculations a month were much less likely to get prostate cancer than those who had just four to seven ejaculations a month. And while the study doesn’t prove that ejaculations were the only factor, when other factors were taken into consideration the original findings held.

8. It helps you get a good night’s ZZZZZZ
Oxytocin released during climax also helps you sleep, which is why you generally feel quite sleepy after you’ve had an orgasm. Of course, getting the right amount of sleep each night is also linked with other important health benefits, such as a healthy weight.

Source: WebMD