Sex And Survival
A man’s heart may swell with love, but is sex swell for his heart? Possibly so, according to a report from the United Kingdom. Researchers evaluated 918 men who were in good general health when the study began. Each man provided information on the frequency of his sexual activity; over the next 10 years, the men who reported three or more orgasms per week enjoyed a 50% lower death rate than the men who ejaculated less often. A report from the Massachusetts Male Aging Study agrees that sex may be protective. Among the 952 men with intact erectile function, men who had sex once a month or less were 45% more likely to develop cardiovascular disease than the men who had sex two or more times a week. The link between sexual activity and cardiac health was not explained by conventional cardiac risk factors or a man’s satisfaction with his relationships. Although the American and British findings are heartening, they do not prove that sex itself is protective. Another explanation is that sexual activity reflects a general satisfaction with life that is good for health. And it’s even more likely that the men who had sex infrequently may have been burdened by social isolation or by smoking, drinking, drug abuse, or diseases that impair libido and potency. Men who choose to discuss these studies with their partners need not dwell on these major caveats.