Stressful Events Made Easier By Making Love

One fun and healthy way to get rid of the jitters before that big business meeting: Calm your nerves by having sexual intercourse, of course with a willing partner, according to a study on the impact of sex on stress as measured by one's blood pressure in stressful situations.

Researchers asked 22 men and 24 women to maintain diaries about how often they experienced full blown intercourse, masturbation or sexual activity that excluded intercourse for two weeks. Afterward, patients were given tests measuring their stress levels involving public speaking and solving math problems aloud.

Those who had intercourse but no other kind of sexual activity enjoyed the most relief, as their blood pressure levels normalized faster than the other groups. And, that beneficial effect lasted for at least a week too.

On the flip side, patients who didn't have sexual intercourse had the highest blood pressure readings of all groups. But what do you do if you're not in a committed relationship? Attack that stress head-on, and you can do it without a willing partner or a toxic drug by learning the Emotional Freedom Technique, the energy psychology tool I use in my practice based on the same energy meridians used in traditional acupuncture, just without the needles.

MSNBC January 25, 2006

New Scientist January 26, 2006

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