You might think the benefits of getting hot and heavy with your partner only last about as long as your mutual stamina, but there’s a good chance being active in the bedroom as you age is helping you stay young and healthy long after you venture from beneath the sheets.
We know that true intimacy can boost our confidence, relieve stress, and make us feel closer to our loved one. But apparently, a satisfying romp can sharpen our senses, too. A study from Rutgers University in New Jersey monitored women’s brain function post-coitus with MRI and PET scans and found sex to physically light up cells in “widespread activation throughout the brain.” Think of it as a workout for your brain — the more active it is, the sharper it becomes. To put it into perspective, this amount of activity is way more than you’d get playing a few rounds of Sudoku, which only has debatable results.
Even better, the researchers saw the same results, specifically for women, whether they achieved their amorous goal with a partner or all by themselves. Basically, whichever way you get there, “the Big O” can help your brain function better. Talk about a win-win!
We aren’t suggesting you need to “go through the motions” when you’re not in the mood. Quality matters when we’re talking about time in the sack — and science backs that up. A study from the University of Chicago that found sex to be “positively associated with health in middle age and later life,” emphasized frequency (more than once a week), as well as “good quality sex.” They made this conclusion after observing 3,000 men and women between the ages of 25 and 85. “Men and women reporting very good or excellent health were more likely to be sexually active compared with their peers in poor or fair health.” And, the better health you have as you age, the more likely you are to live longer.
Whether you’re looking to get back out into the dating world or spice up your romance at home, these benefits — plus getting your heart rate up and burning some calories (about 76 on average, to be precise) —make having an active love life all the more enticing!