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How The Seasons Affect Your Sexual Desire, According To Research

Couple Leaning in For a Kiss
Image by Manu Prats / Stocksy
September 17, 2020

It's not uncommon to experience changes in energy, behavior, and even sleeping patterns that coincide with the change of seasons. But what about sex drive? As it turns out, it, too, is one of the many things that can be affected by the season. Here, we look at what the research says, plus ways to naturally boost your sex drive.

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Seasonal changes in libido.

Summer is thought of as a pretty "hot" season with people feeling friskier than other times of the year. It's possible the increase in vitamin D in the summertime, spending more time in social settings, and showing more skin throughout the summer months together might create more sexual interest.

But when we look at hormone patterns, fall may actually be the season when sexual desire gets a boost.

Humans, like most mammals, experience a sort of "biological rhythm" when it comes to fertility1 and other bodily processes. Our hormones fluctuate with these rhythms, including hormones like testosterone, which play a big role in sex drive, among other things.

In one study on testosterone in men and women, researchers found both experienced a drop in testosterone in the summer2, with a spike in fall. A second study on men only also found a prominent seasonal peak in testosterone levels3 in October and November. Additional research suggests it's not uncommon for men, in particular, to experience a drop in testosterone in the colder months of winter4, as well.

Taking these studies together, it's possible that fall may be a particularly potent time of year when it comes to sex drive. Another study found men actually find women's bodies more attractive during the colder months5 because they're less likely to see women's bodies exposed around that season, in comparison to the summertime.

Of course, if you or a partner suffer(s) from season affective disorder (SAD)6, the fall and winter months may not bring much sexual desire along with them. Depression is known to lower one's sex drive7, with a decreased libido in colder months being a possible indication of SAD.

The bottom line.

Research suggests testosterone levels may peak in the fall, which could mean more interest in sex around this time of year.

That being said, the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic has left a lot of people feeling uninspired in the bedroom. Luckily, there are lots of things you can do to boost your libido and increase testosterone levels if that's what you want to do. Cleaning up your diet and eating healthy fats like avocado and salmon, while cutting out excess sugar, can help balance hormones and thus address the root causes of lower sex drive. There may also be psychological reasons for lower libido to address, particularly if you're in a relationship and finding yourself not wanting sex with your partner.

But if you find yourself experiencing a stronger sex drive in the coming weeks, you wouldn't be alone, as that appears to be the general trend for people in the fall.

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