Women can be beautiful at any age, but most of us wouldn’t mind turning back the clock to appear a few years younger.
And we’d certainly like to feel energized, healthy and vibrant. Good news ladies. The fountain of youth might be as near as the master bedroom.
According to neuropsychologist Dr. David Weeks, author of “Secrets of the Super Young,” people who had sex three or more times a week as part of a committed relationship looked significantly younger than their actual ages, as well younger than less sexually active peers.
“Improving the quality of one’s sex life can help a person to look between four and seven years younger,” Weeks says.
But regardless of how often you do it, here are five ways that sex makes you look younger and feel great.
1. Youthful Glow from The Big O
For women, a pleasurable sexual encounter releases the hormone oxytocin, which OB/GYN and women’s midlife health expert Dr. Elizabeth Lyster calls “the bonding hormone.” Dr. Lyster says one of oxytocin’s benefits is that it dilates the blood vessels and improves circulation, brightening your complexion.
2. Mood Enhancer
Sex reduces stress and increases feelings of well-being, says Dr. Lyster. Intimacy also releases feel-good endorphins that make it easier to handle life’s problems. When you feel good, you look good; no one notices wrinkles when you’re smiling.
3. Sex, Sleep & Staying Sleek
Sex burns calories, but the real payoff in terms of weight control is that oxytocin promotes a good night’s sleep. And several major studies point to the importance of sleep in weight control. Looking rested and thin definitely makes you look younger. That’s extra motivation to get between the sheets, right?
4. Use it, Don’t Lose It
When hormones change during perimenopause, a woman can experience dryness and pain during intercourse. This may cause her to avoid sex, creating a downward spiral that only worsens the physical problems, Dr. Lyster says. She recommends women use a water-based lubricant or an estrogen cream so they can continue to enjoy sex as they grow older.
5. The Outside Matches the Inside
Regular, pleasurable sex delivers more health benefits—like a stronger immune system and a lower risk of heart disease—and being healthy is the most important part of looking healthy. Research aside, perhaps Natalie from Northbrook, 49, who enjoys sex with her husband of 23 years at least twice a week, puts it best: “After we’ve had sex, it’s like I can take a deep breath. The stress goes away, I feel more connected to my husband, and I feel more vibrant. Life is just rosier!”