You may have thought sex was just a pure form of physical enjoyment, but the health benefits that come along with it just can't be ignored.
Many people don't think having sex on a daily or nightly basis is plausible — between heavy workloads, stressful days, unintentional late-night binges on mac and cheese and all around laziness, but, honestly, sex is what can actually make you feel relief from all of those stressors.
I know it's difficult to even motivate yourself to hit the gym at the end of the day, and pure naked vulnerability seems like the last thing you want to be dealing with, but it's time to change that mindset. It's time to go back to the birds and the bees.
So what are the benefits of sex that lie outside the actual act itself?
1. It keeps your immune system healthy
Trying to fight off the common cold? Maybe you should head to the bedroom instead of CVS. Having sex numerous times weekly correlates with high levels of immunoglobulin (IgA), an antibody, that protects from infections and the common cold.
Sound too good to be true? Well, you can thank researchers at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania for this lovely discovery.
2. It lowers blood pressure
High blood pressure is often times a symptom of heart attack, kidney disease and stroke. A study published in Biological Psychology found that consistent sex helps to lower diastolic blood pressure.
The study focused on people who lived with their partners, which clearly makes frequent sex more of a reality than a dream.
3. It's a lot more fun to burn calories in bed than on the treadmill
Obviously sex is a workout, but how much of one is it really? And what could make it better? For every half hour you spend getting it on, you can burn over 144 calories and the more you move around, the more calories you will burn.
4. It relieves stress
No this isn't your imagination, this is actual science! Psychology professor Stuart Brody, Ph.D. from the University of the West of Scotland, conducted research that affirmed people who had sex "once over two weeks were better able to a manage stressful situations such as public speaking."
Could you imagine how much less stressed you would be if you just upped that amount?
5. You can ditch the moisturizer and anti-aging creams
I'm not sure who comes up with these studies or how they think of them, but a study done at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital in Scotland is about to blow your mind.
A group of researchers sat behind a one-way mirror and watched as participants sat before them. The researchers had to guess each person's age and realized that those who were having sex more often were viewed as seven to 12 years younger than their real age.
How? Why? Well, frequent sex encourages the releases of hormones, which is what keeps you looking young. Estrogen, especially, aids in the softening of skin -- and who wouldn't want that?
6. You will definitely sleep better
You may think the insane amount of physical activity you just engaged in is what is putting you to sleep afterwards, but that isn't really the case.
The endorphins that are released during sex are also those that help you relax and help you de-stress, which finally prepare you for sleep.
7. It decreases pain
Endorphins like epinephrine and dopamine take over your body after an orgasm. These are the bodies natural pain relievers.
8. For the males: It decreases risk of prostate cancer
HOW? Well, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association said that men who ejaculated at least 21 times monthly were less likely to get prostate cancer.
The best part of this is that you don't really even need sex to accomplish it.
9. For the females: It helps alleviate cramps
If you haven't already figured this one out on your own, you at least now have science to back it up. Cindy M. Meston, Ph.D., director of the Sexual Psychophysiology Laboratory at the University of Texas at Austin, explained that "when a woman orgasms, her uterus contracts and, in the process, rids the body of cramp-causing compounds."
Sure, your boyfriend (or whomever you're having sex with) may not be too keen on the idea, but hopefully, for your sake, he can suck it up and take one for the team.