Did your significant other hack the website, or is there something to this headline?
According to researchers at SUNY Albany, an apple a day may keep the doctor away, but a…well, we’ll let you finish the rest of the sentence. In a nutshell: nature’s anti-depressant isn’t copious amount of chocolate and episodes of Real Housewives…it’s semen! (We’ll wait until the guys stop cheering…)
Researchers Gordon Gallup, Rebecca Burch, and Steven Platek surveyed almost 293 college women at SUNY Albany about their sex lives. They also gave them the Beck Depression Inventory, a standard test for mood. What they found was that women who engage in unprotected sex tended to show fewer depressive symptoms and an elevated mood compared to women who either always or usually used condoms or those who were celibate.
The study controlled for factors like relationships, amount of sex, hormonal birth control use, and more, and still found the correlation between mood and semen. What’s it all about? The answer is in your vagina, obviously. Vaginal tissue is absorptive, and semen really does have a bunch of mood-elevating compounds like oxytocin, endorphins, and serotonin. Put those two together (literally), and you’ve got a homemade cure for the blues. Another theory is that women’s bodies can recognize the sperm of recurrent partners, triggering a feeling of closeness and lovey-doveyness (explains why you spent your early twenties sleeping with your ex, too!)
Of course, don’t rush off to have unprotected sex all willy-nilly to deal with a bad day at work. Semen may turn that frown upside down for a while, but an unplanned pregnancy or STD can be a serious mood-killer. (Surprise! It’s chlamydia! Here’s a party hat.) But hey, this study isn’t totally useless to you…it makes for great cocktail party conversation, at the very least. (And post-menopausal women in monogamous relationships, knock yourselves out!)