One of the hardest things to do in a long-term, monogamous relationship is maintain a healthy sex life. There are a lot of reasons why this might be the case: Fatigue from work, kids, boredom, mismatched schedules, changes in libido. Sex is hard!
But engaging a little hibbity-dibbity on the reg has been shown to be both good for your mental health, and for your physical health, as well. How good? A new study shows it can literally extend your life. Don’t you want to live forever?
Researchers from the University of San Francisco studied the sexual habits of 129 mothers in relationships over the course of a week. By looking at the structure of their red blood cells, scientists were able to determine that women who had sex more than once of the course of the week had longer telomeres, the cap ends to our chromosomes that protect them from deteriorating. This is significant because in 2003 it was discovered that people with longer telomeres lived longer lives than people with short telomeres.
Over time, telomeres break down naturally. This is essentially “aging.” However, many different factors can speed up the process, things like drinking, smoking and eating whole pizzas.
What’s significant about this study is that researchers at the University of San Francisco are suggesting that the act of sex can inhibit this deterioration process, and potentially extend our lives.
But don’t be too concerned if you’re one of the 15 percent of Americans in a sexless relationship. There are other ways to prevent telomere break down, or even reverse it: Things like regular exercise, or healthy diet, for example.
As far as fun life-extending activities, however, it doesn’t get much better than mind-blowing sex.
A few other things we learned about our bodies today:
- Speaking of sex, it’s really hard to die doing it.
- How long, do you think, until they’ve banned soccer headers because they turn our brains to mush?
- It’s not that squatting hurts because it isn’t good for our joints, it hurts because our bodies have forgotten how good it once was.
- Hospitals are running out of drugs, and that’s not so good.
- In today’s “no, duh” news, maybe binge-watching Stranger Things in one sitting isn’t good for our cardio. Who’d a thunk it?