Not like you need a (s)excuse, but in case you’re after some impressive trivia (perhaps NSFW or parents), turns out sex supports everything from your heart to your happiness. It could even help you sail through cold season as smoothly as John Mayer on charm offensive.
Over to international sex and relationships expert Tracey Cox (whose sex toy range is available exclusively at Lovehoney) for the wellbeing wins worth jumping in the sack for.
It’s an anti-ager
Sex boosts the anti-ageing hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA for short… phew). Post-orgasm, DHEA in the blood rises to five times the normal level. In fact, UK research found that 60-somethings having regular sex looked between five and seven years younger than those who weren’t.
You live longer
Add more time to the clock with regular sex – getting down twice a week has been linked to an increase of three to eight years in a person's lifespan.
It boosts his swimmers
Sperm quality improves when men have regular sex. Tests show it lowers when they abstain, particularly after 10 days. Get to it, mates!
Sex protects against colds
Hitting the sheets once or twice a week raises the level of immunoglobulins (IgA) in your body, increasing protection against colds and flu. In fact, couples who have regular sex have 30 per cent higher levels of IgA than abstainers.
The ultimate workout
Go figure! Weekly quickies of 20 minutes burn around 30,000 kJs annually – that's as much as you consume jogging 120km. Meanwhile, an individual sesh can burn about 800 kJs, which is like running 15 minutes on a treadmill… but more fun.
It can nix PMT
Many women say they feel less pre-menstrual pain if they have sex before their cycle. Why? Muscle contraction that occurs during sexual arousal releases tension in the muscles of the uterus, which are responsible for those cramps. Women who regularly have sex also have more regular periods – sex contributes to more balanced hormone levels, including those that regulate your monthly cycle.
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Hello, heart protection
Yes, really! A study by Queen’s University in Belfast suggests that sex three times a week could halve the risk of a heart attack or stroke, while research in Israel discovered women who had at least two orgasms weekly were 30 per cent less likely to have heart disease than those who didn’t regularly have sex. While you’re in bed (or against the kitchen counter…), your heart rate goes from 70 beats per minute to 150 – good training for your ticker.
Sex is a natural mood-booster
It increases the heart rate and stimulates the brain to release more serotonin, the happiness hormone and a key anti-depressant.
Go for glow
Intercourse promotes skin renewal. Scientists point out the faster blood flow during sex increases the level of oxygen in the body. This boosts the levels of nutrients that replenish the skin. Sweating also cleans your pores, making skin brighter and decreasing the risk of developing dermatitis.
See ya, stress
People who often have sex cope better with stress and have lower blood pressure than those who abstain.
Sex eases headaches…
By releasing the tension that restricts blood vessels in the brain.
It promotes Zs
Oxytocin, which both the male and female bodies produce at orgasm, helps with insomnia. It's why so many blokes fall asleep as soon as they’ve climaxed.
Rise and shine
Starting the day with passion puts you in a good mood. Research suggests adults who have sex in the AM are more optimistic about the day ahead.
It's good for your teeth
Kissing encourages saliva, which cleans food debris between the teeth and lowers the level of acidity in your mouth. Bye, bad breath!