The short answer: Yes! Sex contributes to overall wellbeing. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of having a healthy sex life.
Five benefits of a healthy sex life
Did you know that sex burns approximately five calories per minute? More specifically, it’s a form of cardiovascular exercise because it elevates your heart rate and requires the use of different muscles. So, having sex, regularly, will maximise the cardio benefits. Exercise has never felt so good.
Lowers stress and blood pressure
When you have sex, your body releases endorphins (also known as the feel-good hormone). Endorphins boost your mood, making you feel less stressed.
According to an article on Everyday Health, ‘A Scottish study published in the journal Biological Psychology found that sexual activity prevents increases in blood pressure during stressful events. While this effect was more pronounced in people who had sex with penetration, nonpenetrative sex and masturbation can also help you stay serene.’
Helps you get better sleep
The National Sleep Foundation says that orgasms release a hormone called prolactin which can help you feel relaxed and sleepy. Another study published in May 2015 in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, documented that women who slept longer had an increase in sexual desire.
Helps to keep your immune system healthy
It’s also been found that having sex, regularly, boosts your body’s capability of producing antibodies that protect against germs, viruses and bacteria. However, your immune system also needs the incorporation of a healthy diet, exercise, vaccinations as well as getting enough sleep to stay strong.
Remember, a weak immune system makes you more susceptible to a variety of diseases, including sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as HIV which can lead to AIDS. So, even though sex is good for your health, you must practice safe sex by using barrier-method contraception (male and/or female condoms). Other forms of contraception can protect against unintended pregnancy but not STIs.
Improves bladder control in women
Approximately 30% of women experience urinary incontinence during their lives. The primary reason is a weak pelvic floor. Orgasms initiate the same muscles that women use to perform Kegels – exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor, which improves bladder control. (Read our article, Five exercises for a better sex life, to learn more about Kegels and other sex-enhancing exercises.)
How Marie Stopes can help you
Marie Stopes is the global leader in women’s sexual and reproductive health. Our conveniently-located centres provide professional women’s health services such as STI and HIV testing. We also offer a safe abortion service if you have an unintended pregnancy and wish to terminate.
Schedule an appointment at your nearest centre. Our staff are fully qualified to answer any questions you may have about sex. You don’t need to be embarrassed. We’re here to help you always.