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Friday, May 6, 2011

Ultimate Healthy Habit-Making Whoopee (others call this having sex!)

    Woody Allen once scripted in a movie that someday research would find that the only non-carcinogenic food would be a chocolate sundae. As you might imagine, that was always one of my favorite phrases. It was amusing, might not be that far off the mark and, of course, gave me the excuse to keep on eating chocolate sundaes with impunity.
    Now that I am on the Healthy Living and Life Style track I have been in search of that ultimate replacement. Turns out it is sex. Who knew!?! It is also appealing because it fits into that “guilty pleasures” category. There is something always compelling about a forbidden fruit. It is something we don’t talk about much…especially as we get older. Do people still “do it”? If so, how much do they “Go at it”? Is it fun any more? Can creaky bones still move in all the ways they need to? And if we want to add this to our Healthy Lifestyle subscriber’s list, how much is enough to qualify? I thought it was time to do a little research. As I easily discovered…there is plenty out there!
    The Women’s Health Magazine-WomensHealthMag -summarized 17 Health Benefits of having sex.  It also mentions the frequency necessary for each particular benefit. For instance, it mentions a study from Queens University in Belfast which states that if a man has sex 3 or more times a week it will cut his risk for heart attack in half. It also lowers the risk for stroke. WOW! Nobody told me this when I worked for the American Heart Association! Researchers at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania found that those who have sex once or twice a week can boost their immune system by 30%. Now we know why some folks get multiple colds each winter….you know who you are…Regular sex has also been found to reduce pain from arthritis and menstrual cramps because of the release of endorphins after an orgasm. Then in the Huffington Post- HuffPostHealth-they sited a study published in the British Medical Journal  which found that men who had sex once per week increased their longevity by 8 to 10 years. Researchers at Duke University found that women who claimed to enjoy their sex lives lived seven to eight years longer than women who were indifferent to sex. Not only do we live longer but we also look younger… Researchers at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital in Scotland did a long-term study of 3,500 people between the ages of 30 and 101 and found that regular sex may shave between four and seven years off your physical appearance. And did I mention it protects you from getting cancer, helps us lose weight, lowers our blood pressure, boosts our self-esteem, levels out our mood swings, causes us to sleep better, enhances intimacy with our partner, and improves our muscle tone?-WebMD- What is there not to like?!? It is, in fact, the ultimate ingredient in a healthy lifestyle.