Sex Is Good for Our Brains-Who Knew???

According to a recent article by Dr. Oz, sex has some of the same stress-relieving benefits as exercise. In a recent animal study, they found that daily sexual experiences over two-weeks, reduced the release of cortisol, a major stress hormone, increased the brain’s ability to create and support new brain cells, and decreased anxietylike behavior.

Sound like good news? It would be except many women report losing their interest and desire for sex as they get older, and especially once they become moms. Likewise, negative messages they learned growing up may intensify their lack of libido.

For women, sexual desire derives from emotional as well as physical chemistry. Women want to feel an emotional connection with their partners, and when this is absent as often happens over time especially when raising a family, sexual interest diminishes. Midlife is a time when men and women often turn to affairs to  rekindle the spark they once felt with their original partner. However, once the honeymoon ends with the new partner, sexual desire may fade too.

The solution is that we must nourish our relationships with our current partners like we do our children, friends or anyone we love. Then emotional intimacy kindles desire and physical intimacy kindles an emotional connection. And the added benefit, sex is good for our brains. Who Knew???

I’m writing a new book about hormones, libido/desire and intimacy in women. If you have questions or would like to share your stories, please comment or e-mail