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February is Heart Month. There are 5 reasons why sex is good for your heart.

heartsFebruary is the month of groundhogs, heart shaped chocolates, and new sex toys. At least it is in my house. It is also Heart and Stroke month as I was reminded when I sent off my charitable donation this week. The Becel commercials for the heart healthy margarine during the Super Bowl (and how about that Super Bowl eh? Yeah Ravens!) were a reminder that women, especially Mothers die of heart attacks. Having just lost a favourite aunt a few weeks ago at the age of 55 to a massive heart attack the message in the commercial hit a little close to home.
The schools shown in the commercial are from my home town and it was very moving and worth watching.

So in keeping with heart friendly things this month, I came up with a list (that the Heart and Stroke Foundation may not promote) about why sex is good for your ticker.

1. It helps you sleep. As a sex therapist I often see patients who have undiagnosed sleep apnea. It affects their ability to be sexually (tired, and ill), but the lack of sleep significantly stresses your heart.The oxytocin released during orgasm also promotes sleep, and it brings on sleep quickly. Especially for men who you can then maneuver into the wet spot.Getting enough sleep has also been linked with a host of other health benefits, such as a healthy weight and better blood pressure.

2. Speaking of blood pressure… Having sex has been proven by the University of Kansas study to lower your stress and your blood pressure. it is also supported by a British study that had subject who had sex (read boffing) responded better to stress than those who didn’t have intercourse or saved themselves.

3. Sex makes you closer. Couples who have regular sex ( not surprisingly) feel closer. But its more than that. Men who make love to their partners feel protective, have a need to encourage intimacy, and are far more likely to have a higher level of commitment than couples who don’t have sex. And that will warm your heart.

4. It prevents heart attacks. I’m not kidding. By at least 50% in men over the age of 40. In one of my most quoted study done over 20-years, showed that men who had sex two or more times a week were half as likely to have a fatal heart attack than men who had sex less than once a month.

5. And finally it gets your heart in shape to do other things. The rule of thumb is that as long as you can climb a set of stairs you are in shape enough for sex. The resulting endorphin rush helps loosen your joints, makes you more limber and bendy and improves your cardiovascular health.

So sex is good for you. It’s my prescription for heart health this month.