Tags: sex | drive | boosters

What's Killing Your Sex Drive?

By    |   Friday, 27 February 2015 09:44 AM

If your sex life is less than stellar, you’re not alone. A recent study of American men ages 20 to 40 years found that 20 percent hadn’t had sex in a year, while an additional 25 percent had sex once a month or less.
And these are just the men who were willing to admit it.
“Low sex drive is much more common than most people think,” explains Pepper Schwartz, professor of sociology at the University of Washington and co-author of “The Normal Bar: The Surprising Secrets of Happy Couples.”
“You might not realize that some unexpected or surprising things may be killing your sex drive,” Schwartz says. Here are four common causes of low sex drive:
No. 1: Medications. Antidepressants and hypertension meds may lift your mood and lower blood pressure, but they may also decrease the sex drive of men and women alike.
“It is widely known that most of the mood mediators known as SSRIs — like Prozac and Zoloft — can inhibit sexual interest and/or the ability to have an orgasm,” Schwartz tells Newsmax Health.
Blood pressure meds such as beta blockers and diuretics can lead to erectile dysfunction because they decrease blood flow. Drugs for diabetes also “often inhibit sexual drive and capability,” adds Schwartz.
Sex-drive solution: If you suspect a lower libido is a side effect of your meds, talk to your doctor about switching to a different drug. Sometimes it takes trial and error, but it is often possible to find a drug that doesn’t affect libido but is still effective.
No. 2: Sleep deprivation. University of Chicago researchers tracked changes in sex drive in a group of healthy men allowed to get only five hours of shut-eye per night. In just one week, their testosterone levels were 15 percent lower than normal.
This is significant because it’s “about the amount that occurs with normal aging by 10 to 15 years,” explains lead researcher Eve Van Cauter, professor of medicine. This isn’t good news considering that testosterone has a direct link to your sex drive.
It also affects your mood and energy level. Plus, being tired is a top reason why many people don’t want to have sex.
“Sleep disorders cause fatigue and you need energy for sex,” adds Schwartz.
Sex-drive solution: Sleep may be the best medicine for boosting things in your bedroom because most testosterone is released while you snooze. Try getting the recommended 7-8 hours a night. Not only will you be more energetic and alert, your sex life may be, too. One way to enhance your sleep is to exercise regularly and do so within several hours before hitting the sack.
No 3: Excess body fat. Feeling pudgy can make you self-conscious about stripping down, but that’s not the only reason why being overweight can hurt your sex life. Extra pounds, especially around the middle, lower testosterone levels.
Researchers studied the link between weight loss and men’s testosterone levels by dividing almost 900 men into three groups: one exercised for 150 minutes per week and changed their diets, another took diabetes medication, and a third took placebo pills.
Those in the diet and exercise group not only lost weight — an average of 17 pounds — but 46 percent had an increase in testosterone levels. The two other groups saw no change.
Sex-drive solution: Break a sweat and slim down to give your testosterone levels, and your sex drive a boost. Although weight lifting is healthy, cardio workouts increase blood flow that is vital for sexual health.
No. 4: Stress. “Anxiety and stress lower testosterone levels, which inhibits sexual interest,” says Schwartz. When your body is busy releasing stress hormones like cortisol, it doesn’t produce as much testosterone. Stress also saps energy and can disrupt sleep.
Sex-drive solution: Once again, exercise is an answer. It’s a great stress-reliever, helping shake off anxiety and causing the release of feel-good brain chemicals called endorphins. Relaxation exercises also can help, as can meditation and massage. Find the stress-busting activity that works best for you and do it regularly.
The full version of this article appeared in Health Radar newsletter. To read more, click here.

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A recent study of American men found that 20 percent hadn't had sex in a year, while an additional 25 percent had sex once a month or less. The good news is that many surprising things that may be killing your sex drive are easily remedied.
sex, drive, boosters
Friday, 27 February 2015 09:44 AM
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