Last Update: February 1, 2022
Already an integral part of healthy relationships (and, you know, propagating the world), heading to the bedroom might actually be more important to overall health and well-being than previously realized.
Instead of popping a pill to ease pain, anxiety, or depression, grabbing your significant other and scheduling some alone time could be just the trick. Read on for some of the most amazing benefits you’ll see (and feel) from a session between the sheets.
To state the obvious, sex makes us feel pretty good… Emotionally, that is. When the big O happens, the neurochemicals dopamine and serotonin are released in full force. These two hormones are the same ones that are unnaturally released on drugs like cocaine or heroin, and they make the pleasure centers in your brain go absolutely wild. Post-coitus, these hormones will signal elation, relaxation, and satisfaction.
Getting turned on can actually help rev up the metabolism. Sexual arousal boosts adrenaline, the same hormone that skyrockets when skydiving or seeing a scary movie. Adrenaline is particularly good at getting the heart racing, increasing dexterity, and as it turns out, breaking down and burning fat stores.
A British poll asked more than 2,000 London Marathon runners about their pre-race rituals—and the results are surprising. Turns out, on average, runners who jumped in the sack the night before the race finished about five minutes faster than those who abstained. So that old adage that athletes shouldn’t get romantic the evening before a big event? It doesn’t exactly hold up. (Thankfully!)
Snuggle up to keep colds at bay this winter. Researchers have found that sexually active couples had higher levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA), the antibody responsible for fighting off the cold virus. And good news for those in long-term relationships—IgA levels exponentially increased the longer couples were together. Another reason that sex can boost immunity? Social support has been proven to enhance the immune system by easing stress and anxiety, as well as increasing confidence.
Trade in your memory-boosting gingko for a breath mint, and get ready for an intelligence-increasing make out sesh. Regular sexual activity can increase brain power and actually cause the hippocampus to grow by creating new neurons. The hippocampus is the center of emotion and memory in the brain, and growing new cells in this region can improve the ability to create new memories and regulate mood.
It’s definitely more fun than icing an achy back. Research shows that sex both increases pain tolerance and decreases our perception of pain. And it’s not just back or knee pain that’s alleviated—37 percent of women who suffer from migraines and cluster headaches noticed a marked decrease in pain after getting it on.
Photo credit: Lumina via Stocksy
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