It’s no secret that sex comes with many benefits, but a new study suggests that having sex frequently can also keep you from aging. Well, sort of.
The study, conducted by the University of California in San Francisco, monitored the sexual habits of 129 mothers in relationships over one week. Researchers found that those who had sex at least once during that week had significantly longer telomeres, nucleoprotein caps at the end of DNA strands that protect chromosomes from deteriorating, than those who didn’t.
Telomeres naturally break down due to aging, poor diet, and high alcohol use, according to the study. But being physically active, eating well, and, apparently, having sex, can help mend and lengthen them. Other studies suggest that these telomeres can help you live longer and keep up physical and mental health as you age.
Something interesting about the study however, is that relationship satisfaction, daily support or conflict, or perceived stress had nothing to do with telmoreres length. Neither did the participants sex drive or enjoyment of sex.
Obviously more research here is needed as it was such a small study done over a short period of time. But other studies have pegged once a week to be an ideal number of times to have sex with your partner as well, so it’s not a bad goal to strive for.
But it’s also important to remember that you should be having sex as much as you and your partner want to be. There are a lot of things that may prolong your life that will make you a lot happier than having routine and unfulfilling sex.