Bring Sexy Back
If work is your passion, it may be time to rethink your turn-ons. That’s because frequent sexual activity impacts more than the springs in your bed. It also keeps you healthier, happier, and well-paid, thanks to a host of hormones — and their effects.
“Sex actually starts in your brain by releasing a powerful cocktail of chemicals,” explains Dr. Ava Cadell, Ph.D., AACT-certified sex counselor and author of NeuroLoveology: The Power to Mindful Love & Sex. These hormones, such as oxytocin, dopamine, and prolactin, positively affect you mentally and physically.
Read on to learn six scientifically backed reasons to get it on tonight.
It Lowers Stress Levels
Up your pleasure and you’ll lower your stress level, found Dutch researchers. When looking at the brain waves of volunteers who watched porn, the scientists found that when you’re really, really aroused, your gray matter actually shuts down in a way to stop processing information (i.e. thinking) so you are relaxed enough to climax.
“When we have an orgasm, oxytocin is released. This hormone has an amnesia effect,” explains Marne Wine, LPC, CST, licensed professional counselor and certified sex therapist at the Brief Therapy Institute of Denver. “Become aware of how much better your body feels after orgasm. That hormone emitted during sex also relieves stress, which helps us think more clearly.”
It Could Increase Your Salary
People who had sex more than four times a week had statistically significant higher wages (about 5 percent) than folks who dove between the sheets less often, according to a recent Bonn study by the Institute of the Study of Labor.
While sex alone may not be the cause of higher pay, it does release the feel-good brain chemical dopamine, which results in a cascade of emotions related to reward, motivation, self-image, and confidence, according to Dr. Cadell. And these are just the types of emotions that positively impact your performance on the job.
It Makes You Look Younger
Have sex about three times a week and you’ll turn back the clock, according to British clinical psychologist David Weeks of the Royal Edinburgh Hospital. When volunteers were asked to guess the age of subjects who told Dr. Weeks how much sex they were having, those who bedded down the most often looked five to seven years younger than their actual age.
A healthy sex life appears to improve blood circulation and release a rush of a human growth hormone that also maintains skin elasticity, found Weeks, who presented his research at a British Psychological Society lecture last year.
It Can Boost Your Immunity to Colds
When Pennsylvania scientists tested the saliva of subjects for levels of an antibody known to fight colds and flus called immunoglobulin (IGA) and then asked about their sex lives, they found some interesting results. Those who had sex up to three times a week showed higher levels of IGA, making them more resistant to the sniffles than those who weren’t getting laid. “Sex builds immunity while creating a powerful bond with your partner,” says Crow.
Just don’t bond too often. The same researchers found that people who had sex most frequently — that was three or more times a week — also experienced a drop in IGA levels.
It Motivates You to Clean House
Share the housework at home and you’ll see more action in the bedroom, found a 2013 University of Washington study in the American Sociological Review. When men and women divided the household duties equally, they reported more active sex lives than those who paid less attention to housekeeping.
“Sexual energy does not begin and end at the threshold of the bedroom,” explains Cay Crow, an AASECT-certified sex therapist. “A sexy text, a touch as you walk by, can remind your partner that you are looking forward to playing with them again.” Now we can add emptying the dishwasher without being asked to the list of aphrodisiacs.
It Will Protect You From a Heart Attack
Nelson Rockefeller and Attila the Hun aside, having frequent sex can actually protect you from having a heart attack, found Tufts Medical Center researchers. When the scientists looked at the risk of your heart stopping, those who had the most sex per week (that’s four or more days, if you’re counting), had a lower chance of going into cardiac arrest than those who made love less frequently (we’re talking once or not at all every seven days).
Adds Crow, “Sex is great generally for the entire cardiovascular system; it increases blood flow and oxygenates the muscles.” And that’s reason enough.