Can sex make you smarter?

So first we told you it would halve your risk of heart attack. Then we said it could prevent a cold or flu. Now, we’re bringing you the news that sex might even make you smarter.

Couple Sex Hands

Research has been carried out on mice and rats in Maryland and South Korea, which found that increased sexual activity improved both mental performance and increase the neurogenesis where we form long term memory.

But it isn’t just the young and feisty. The University of Maryland found that middle aged rats who we’re getting loved up also had improved cognitive and hippocampus function in their brains. Meanwhile, in the Konkuk University in Seoul, research in mice showed that ‘sexual interaction could be helpful for buffering adult hippocampal neurogenesis and recognition memory function against the suppressive actions of chronic stress.’ In other words, it could help stop age related decline in your grey matter.

But how about porn? Does it have the opposite effect, like most parents of teenage boys would expect, or at least hope? Although no research has fully proved this one way or another, a study published in October’s Journal of Sex Research has shown that pornographic images can affect people’s working memory and their ability to concentrate. Are you really that surprised though?

Adults Only Keyboard

Sex may make you smarter, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have more sex if you’re smart. Adults with MCI (mild cognitive impairment) tested in another recent study were found to have about half as much sex as their healthier peers (32.5 per cent compared with 62.3 per cent).

Sex may not be enough alone though. Tracey J Shors, a psychologist at the Centre  Collaborative Neuroscience at Rutgers University, has reported that ‘you can make new cells with exercise, Prozac and sex. If you do mental training, you’ll keep alive more cells that you produced. And if you do both, now you have the best of both worlds—you’re making more cells and keeping more alive.’ So sex and sudoku? Doesn’t sound too shabby.

Read more

Why sex hurts – a gynecologist’s guide

Top 10 sex fetishes in Britain – no, feet is not number one

‘He doesn’t want to have sex and I really want kids’

< Back

Also in this week’s magazine

7 ways flowers boost your mood - flower fix - featured
Therapy

7 ways to use flowers to boost your mood from this top florist influencer

Anna Potter has amassed a staggering 180K Instagram followers thanks to her vibrant, almost spiritual flower arrangements - don't miss this chance to beautify your life (and mood) with flowers

Anna and Anton Love Island FEATURE
Relationships

Do all humans have a type…on paper?

'He's definitely my type on paper' - ah Love Island is back and so is this well-known phrase. Ever wondered why you are attracted to a certain type? Psychologist and author, Audrey Tang, explains the psychological laws of attraction 

Katy perry and taylor swift feud FEATURE
Therapy

Friendship therapy – Falling out with a friend

Katy Perry and Taylor Swift are friends again. But what about real world friendships? Healthista psychotherapist Sally Brown provides a detailed, useful answer to a complex friendship problem

meditation for sleep - featured
Video quick fixes

Got insomnia? This 10 minute meditation for sleep will help

Our meditation series with actor and meditation teacher Maude Hirst continues

insomnia remedies, sleep study, featured
Sleep

13 insomnia remedies to help you sleep better

A recent study revealed that sleeping with the TV on may contribute to weight gain. Try these innovative insomnia remedies to help you sleep better

Is Donald Trump the ultimate narcissist_ Here are 9 signs to prove it FEATURE
Therapy

Is Donald Trump the ultimate narcissist? Here are 9 signs to prove it

Yes, the man is actually pathological, says Melanie Tonia Evans, a global expert on malignant narcissism and author of a new book on how to recover from narcissistic abuse

Latest Video Series

Healthista-footer

Wellness Weekly

I agree to my personal data being stored and used to receive the Healthista newsletter.

Top