Healthy sex boosts our healthy life but this boost doesn’t appear to work for casual sex or hookups. One study of nearly 7,500 US college students across 14 public universities found that those who had more hookups had lower levels of happiness and self-esteem, and higher levels of depression and anxiety.
In contrast to the notion that men are more likely to be OK with casual sex, the researchers found no differences between the sexes.
On that note, here are benefits of healthy sex.
It relieves stress
The act of sex floods your brain with all sorts of feel-good chemicals while reducing the stress hormone cortisol.
Dopamine, which impacts the brain’s pleasure and reward centres; endorphins, which can reduce pain and stress; and oxytocin, also known as the cuddle hormone, are all released during sex, with higher levels after orgasm.
It boosts mood. Oxytocin promotes feelings of well-being and happiness. And you don’t have to boink like bunnies to feel that way.
It’s more than the coital act that brings benefits. Studies of older adults found that holding hands, hugging, kissing and mutual stroking also contribute to a greater quality of life.
Sex can ward off depression, too. Studies show that men and women who have intercourse with their partners have greater satisfaction with their mental health.
But the boost doesn’t appear to work for casual sex or hookups. One study of nearly 7,500 US college students
It improves sleep
Prolactin, a hormone that relaxes you, is also released after an orgasm. The combination of prolactin and all the rest of the “feel-good” hormones are why most people sleep better after sex.
To get the highest amount of prolactin, science suggests having an orgasm with a partner if possible. Research shows that the level of prolactin in both men and women after intercourse can be “400% greater than that following masturbation.”
Unfortunately, sleep deprivation can also impact sexual satisfaction. A study of nearly 10,000 women ages 50 to 79 found that those who got fewer than seven to eight hours of sleep a night were less likely to be sexually active. The older the woman, the more likely she was to report less sex when sleep deprived.
It boosts immunity
Having regular sex may also help you fight off disease. A study of 276 healthy volunteers at the University of Pittsburgh found that those with the most diverse social networks, including not just lovers but family, friends and organizations, were the least likely to catch colds.
It decreases the risk of prostate cancer
Frequent ejaculation appears to be linked to a lower risk for prostate cancer. A 2004 study published in the British Medical Journal studied the sex life of over 50,000 American males between the ages of 40 and 75. Men reporting 21 or more ejaculations a month were less likely to get prostate cancer than men who ejaculated four to seven times a month. A follow-up study published in 2016 showed the same results.