"You need to breathe deeply, move more, and most importantly, have more sex—either with your partner or by yourself," I told Jen during our third consultation. "Your prescription is more orgasms." Jen initially seemed surprised to hear that recommendation from me, but as a doctor who helps women reverse autoimmune disease and balance their hormones, I suggest orgasms a lot for stressed-out patients like Jen. As a tenure-track researcher at a nearby university, she sat most of the day, got regular headaches, frequently felt anxious meeting with her colleagues, and was under nearly constant pressure—which meant her sex drive had crashed to nearly zero.
In my practice, self-care and stress management are not luxuries, and regularly releasing hormones like oxytocin is a great way to help manage a hectic schedule, as this bonding hormone buffers against stress hormones like cortisol that can make you tired, old, and overweight. Oxytocin plays a role "in a wide variety of physiological and pathological functions such as sexual activity, penile erection, ejaculation, pregnancy, uterine contraction, milk ejection, maternal behavior, social bonding, stress, and probably many more," write Navneet Magon and Sanjay Kalra in a study published in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Knowing all those benefits, you definitely want more oxytocin in your life. Luckily, there are a bunch of ways to get it. Hugs release this bonding hormone and moms release oxytocin during childbirth and breastfeeding so they can bond with their babies. But you don’t need to get pregnant to release oxytocin. Here are nine feel-good, health-boosting benefits of regular orgasms: