5 reasons sex is good for you

Getting intimate can boost your health and wellbeing in some surprising ways. Here are five of the best reasons to get romantic.

Romance has many positive health benefits, besides warm, fuzzy feelings and a giddy smile.

Several studies have proven that having sex can give our health a boost in more ways than one.

Take a look at five great reasons to turn down the lights tonight:

Sex reduces the risk of heart disease

Everyone knows exercise is good for your heart, and what better form of exercise than sex? Men, in particular, have been shown to benefit.

One study from New England Research Institutes suggests men in their 50s who have sex at least twice a week enjoy a 45 per cent decreased risk of heart disease compared with those who see a little less action.

Your best bet to make the most of this health benefit? Don’t follow your bedroom antics with a bucket of fried chicken or a tub of chocolate mousse.

Sex makes you look younger

Couples who have sex three or more times a week look up to seven years younger than their contemporaries, according to Dr David Weeks, former head of old age psychology at Scotland’s Royal Edinburgh Hospital.

The reasons for the youthful glow are numerous, but centre around the release of oestrogen, which improves skin and hair quality, and also the radiance that comes with doing something – or someone – you love and enjoy.

The health benefits of regular sex

Sex lowers blood pressure

Hypertension can be a common occurrence in later years, but Michigan State University researchers have found sexually active women aged between 57 and 85 who find sex pleasurable are less likely to have high blood pressure than those who abstain.

If you are not feeling up to it, all is not lost. According to another study – this time by Carnegie Mellon University – the simple act of hugging regularly can also work to lower blood pressure and boost immunity and feelings of wellbeing.

Sex improves sleep

Having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep? You may want to consider a steamy pre-sleep sex session.

Studies have long shown the moment of orgasm floods your body with oxytocin and the hormone prolactin that, combined, can help to make you feel sleepy.

Another study published in the Journal of Women’s Health showed a rise in oestrogen levels during sex can also improve a woman’s REM cycle.

Sex helps with weight loss

Sex alone won’t help you burn enough fat to lose weight (sorry) – but getting it on could stop you from wanting to binge eat, which may lead to weight gain.

In a 10-year study by Canada’s York University and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, researchers found the oxytocin released during sex decreases our cravings for food, and that those who had higher levels of post-coital oxytocin in their bodies were far more sensible with their food choices than those who registered low levels.

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Written by Dilvin Yasa