It almost seems to good to be true; how could something that feels so good actually be good for you? No, I’m not talking about trashing your cheating ex’s car with a sledgehammer (It’s good for you because of the cardio.); I’m talking about orgasms. A sexual climax, it turns out, can actually be beneficial to your health in a variety of ways, and it doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman or — and here’s the really good news for a lot of people — if you’re with someone or alone. Here’s a rundown of some of the healthy side effects of orgasms.
Reduce Risk of Prostate Cancer: A 2003 Australian study found that frequent ejaculation may prevent a buildup of chemicals in the prostate gland that can cause cancer. The biggest impact, according the the study, seems to be in men in their 20s, with those ejaculating more than five times a week reducing their risk of developing prostate cancer later in life by more than 30%.
Strengthen Your Erection: Regular ejaculation — say, three to five times a week — helps exercise and strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, which can help fight erectile dysfunction…and incontinence, to boot.
Breathe Easier: A 2008 Iranian study found that ejaculation reduces the blood flow to swollen nasal blood vessels in the nose, allowing those with hay fever to breathe easier.
Prevent Cervical Infections: When women experience an orgasm, the cervix opens, or “tents,” flushing out organisms that could cause infections.
Fight Heart Disease and Diabetes: Several studies have shown women who experienced more orgasms have greater resistance to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Fight Menstrual Cramps: Orgasms release endorphins, chemicals that can not only give you a feeling of euphoria, but that can also increase your pain tolerance by up to 70%, which can come in handy during that time of the month.
For Men and Women
Live Longer: A 1997 Welsh study compared a group of people with high orgasmic frequency and one with low orgasmic frequency and found that the more orgasmic group had a mortality rate that was 50% lower. While it couldn’t be conclusively determined that orgasms were the cause of longer life, “the evidence for causation is as convincing here as in many areas where causation is assumed.”
Increase Immunity: Orgasms increase levels of the hormone cortisol and immunoglobulin A in your body, both of which help regulate and maintain your immune system.
Improve Your Mood: Orgasms release chemicals like dopamine and oxytocin, which make you feel happy and satisfied, reducing stress and depression — almost as if you had taken drugs. Indeed, sex expert Gloria Brame states that “A brain scan of someone having an orgasm looks like a heroin addict’s.”
Improve Your Sleep: It should probably go without saying that an orgasm causes the sort of muscle relaxation and lowered blood pressure that can lead to a great night’s sleep.
(Sources: BBC, Men’s Health, New Scientist, WomentoWomen.com, Cosmopolitan, British Medical Journal)