01.12.2005

Sex for Life - by Jeremy Hill

Whilemusing over a good angle for this month's article, I decidedto take my search literally and write about the healthbenefits associated with achieving a good angle - andthe various problems that prevent so many men from effectivelybeing able to do what should come naturally.When a man and a woman love each othervery much, they want to be as close to each other aspossible. Yep, when I was a naive young lad I read thebasic sex intro book Where Did I Come From? too. I rememberthis widely read literary classic made the act of sexseem so easy - as it should be.

However, if memory serves me correctly,at no point in the whole book was it mentioned thatthe designated dad-to-be had a strong possibility ofthe associated blood lipid abnormalities, peripheralmicrovascular changes and waning testosterone levelassociated with the blood sugar problems that can ofteneffectively stop things from going much further thana cuddle. As I recall, the romantic fellow in the bookwas a fuller figured fellow with the greatly increasedgirth which strongly suggests that diabetes may wellbe sneaking up on him - bringing with it the curse oferectile dysfunction, or impotence.

Well, I read the book thoroughly,and for those of you who didn't, I can assure you thatthe cuddly couple did get it on and managed to successfullycarry on their genetic legacy. However, given that 50per cent of all diabetic men over 50 suffer from impotence,let's hope that the little progeny got dad out kickingthe footy for an hour a day to help chip away at hisspare tyre.

Regular and reasonably vigorous exercisedoes seem to play a huge role in most cases of impotence,with research having shown that as little as a halfan hour of cardiovascular exercise a day can significantlyimprove a male's sex drive, ability to achieve and maintainerection, the quality or firmness of his erection andhis ability to orgasm.

A nice side effect of exercise isthat fit people tend to be rated as more sexually attractiveand thus more likely to get sex. By the way, sex canbe a pretty good form of exercise in itself, rapidlyincreasing the heart rate and burning a good amountof calories with each session. Another bonus of moresex is that frequent ejaculation also seems to reduceyour risk of developing prostate cancer in later life.

The reason that exercise is so helpfulfor a male's sex life is that it can raise his testosteronelevel, help him de-stress, increase fitness and thusenergy levels and, most importantly, improve the healthof his peripheral circulatory system. Reduced penilecirculation is the most common cause of impotence, withcontributing factors ranging from smoking (a well knownenemy of the circulatory system), alcoholism, diabetesand several nutritional deficiencies. All of these areable to damage penile arteries, reducing the likelihoodof attaining an effective erection.

But even the non smoking, healthyweighted, moderate drinking, blood sugar stable exercisersmay still find it a bit difficult to get busy on thenight shift, often simply due to a demanding work schedule.

These days people seem to have thepotential to earn more money via less work, and yetthey often simply see the "more money" scenarioand so they choose to work more, often sacrificing qualityof life in chasing the dollars. Work can sap your sexlife both by taking up your time and by raising yourstress level. Stress has a significant impact upon thesex drive by disturbing the body's stress response hormonesputting the body into a sustained 'fight or flight'response mode, effectively making you more likely tofeel jumpy than sexy. The remedy for this is usuallyquite simple - regular time out from work and incorporatingsome relaxation techniques such as meditation, yogaor Tai Chi into your schedule.

Essentially, a poor sex life may actas a marker for some other important aspects of yourhealth such as cardiovascular disease, or perhaps atap on the shoulder to say you are working too hardand need to slow down.

As you can see, there are definitelyseveral obvious health benefits to be gleaned from amore active sex life. But it is worth maintaining alevel head and still being careful with your new-foundhealthy pursuit. There are still the pitfalls of unplannedpregnancies and high incidence of sexually transmitteddiseases to be wary of. Roughly 25 per cent of the populationcarry the genital herpes virus, with up to 90 per centof them unaware that they actually have the disease.

The bottom line is that people whohave more sex tend to be happier and healthier. So ifyour or your partner is missing their spark these days,don't worry, don't stress, do exercise and do see aNaturopath.

Good Health, Jeremy Hill.

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