By Oladapo Ashiru
Although it may sound tongue-in-cheek to recommend more sex as an important health tool, it does appear that is the case. If you are fortunate enough to be in a mutually monogamous relationship, frequent sex is an excellent way to improve your health and even prevent future disease.
Of course, “frequent” is relative and studies have shown that having sex even once a week can benefit your health in many ways.
How to improve sexual desire naturally
If you would like to take advantage of some of the health benefits that regular sexual activity has to offer, yet find that your desire just isn’t what it used to be, there are many natural tips that can help.
Your sexual fires may also be fanned simply by eating less sugar. High levels of sugar in your bloodstream can actually turn off the gene that controls your sex hormones.
Four other tips to give your libido a big-time boost include:
Getting physically active
Studies have also shown that men who engaged in regular physical activity lowered their risk of experiencing sexual dysfunction. Remember, when using exercise as a drug, it’s important to vary your routine.
Also, optimising your diet based on your body’s unique nutritional type will help your libido. Every one has a unique nutritional type with varying demands for the ratios of macronutrients (fats, proteins and carbohydrates) to function optimally. When you are eating the foods your body was designed to consume, you will notice improvements in every aspect of your health. Some people do better eating mainly proteins, some do better eating mainly carbohydrates and some do better eating a combination of proteins and carbohydrates. You will need to do tests to find out which metabolic type you are.
Consider using choline and vitamin B5 supplements. The neurotransmitter that triggers the sexual message, in both men and women, is acetylcholine. With too little ACH, sexual activity goes down. One way to safely and effectively enhance ACH levels in your body is to take choline supplements (1,000-3,000 mg) and vitamin B5 (500-1,500 mg).
According to a study on the impact of sex on stress, as measured by blood pressure levels in stressful situations, sexual intercourse may be one of the best ways to calm your nerves.
Researchers asked nearly 50 men and women to maintain diaries for two weeks, regarding how often they experienced full blown intercourse, masturbation or other sexual activity that excluded intercourse.
Afterward, patients were given tests measuring their stress levels involving public speaking and solving math problems aloud.
Those who had intercourse enjoyed the most relief, as their blood pressure levels normalised faster than the other groups. And the beneficial effect lasted at least a week. People who had abstained from any kind of sex, however, had the highest blood pressure response to stress.
It seems clear that healthy sexual relationships can be a powerful way to get rid of the jitters before that big business meeting. One possible reason for the effect could be the “pair bonding” hormone oxytocin. Sexual desires, as well as orgasm, are controlled by various influences on the brain and nervous system.
Researchers have revealed many similarities between men and women. Contrary to popular belief, for example, visual stimuli spur sexual stirrings in both sexes. Brain imaging studies show that achieving orgasm involves far more than merely heightened arousal. It requires a release of inhibitors, culminating in a shutdown of the brain’s centre of vigilance in both sexes and a widespread neutral power failure in women.
Being fat can have a negative effect on your sexual desire and satisfaction. New research shows that if you are fat and can lose about 13 per cent of your body weight over two years you can feel more sexually attractive and have greater sexual desire. So you don’t need drugs to have a better sex life. Losing a bit of weight may just do the trick.
To really lose weight, it is helpful to treat exercise like a drug. When trying to lose weight gradually increase the amount you are exercising to 60 to 90 minute a day. Initially, the frequency is daily. This is a treatment dose until you normalise your weight or insulin levels. Once it has normalised, you will only need to exercise three to four times a week and include more anaerobic, speed work and strength training, as these are major keys to staying healthy. You should exercise hard enough so that it is difficult to talk to someone next to you.
When you are exercising that hard, your cardiovascular system is under such a significant amount of stress that the mere act of talking, makes you unable to provide your body with enough oxygen. However, if you cannot carry on a conversation at all, then you have gone too far and you need to decrease intensity.
And diet is just as important for weight loss. Remember, the foods that may be healthy for you and vice-versa. Thus, eating according to your specific nutritional type is the proven way to ascertain which foods work best for you.
Some people are healthier eating more protein, some people more healthy eating more carbohydrate and some people need both protein and carbohydrate. If you tend to put on weight easily you are likely a protein type. Also, controlling your insulin levels is important to optimize your health. You see, when you eat grains and sugar your insulin levels increase. When insulin levels increase, you are telling your body to store carbohydrates as fat and not to release any of the stored fat. (This makes it impossible for you to use your own stored body fat for energy.) So the excess carbohydrate in your diet not only makes you to gain weight; they make sure you keep that weight on.
By cutting grains and sugars from your diet, you will not only tame your weight but also fight illnesses. Sex has also been found to boost self-esteem and improve intimacy in your relationship. This is because sex and orgasms result in increased levels of the hormone oxytocin – the “love” hormone – that helps you feel bonded to your partner.
As oxytocin increases, so do hormones known as endorphins, which in turn lessen feelings of pain related to everything from headaches and arthritis to symptoms of PMS. It can also help you to get a better night’s sleep.
Oladapo Ashiru is a Professor of Anatomy/Consultant Reproductive Endocrinologist