There is a lot of research into sexuality and its influence on your health. Below are some short abtracts of research projects we've found. Search the web for more details.
Abstinence and Testosterone Levels
Higher testosterone concentrations were observed following the period of abstinence. These data demonstrate that acute abstinence does not change the neuroendocrine response to orgasm but does produce elevated levels of testosterone in males."
Endocrine response to masturbation-induced orgasm in healthy men following a 3-week sexual abstinence. World Journal of Urology. 2001 Nov;19(5):377-82.
A study on the relationship between ejaculation and serum testosterone level in men.
The purpose of this study was to gain understanding of the relationship between ejaculation and serum testosterone level in men. The serum testosterone concentrations of 28 volunteers were investigated daily during abstinence periods after ejaculation for two phases.
The authors found that the fluctuations of testosterone levels from the 2nd to 5th day of abstinence were minimal. On the 7th day of abstinence, however, a clear peak of serum testosterone appeared, reaching 145.7% of the baseline (P < 0.01). No regular fluctuation was observed following continuous abstinence after the peak.
Ejaculation is the precondition and beginning of the special periodic serum testosterone level variations, which would not occur without ejaculation. The results showed that ejaculation-caused variations were characterised by a peak on the 7th day of abstinence; and that the effective time of an ejaculation is 7 days minimum.
This data is the first to document the phenomenon of the periodic change in serum testosterone level; the correlation between ejaculation and periodic change in the serum testosterone level, and the pattern and characteristics of the periodic change.
J Zhejiang Univ Sci. 2003 Mar-Apr;4(2):236-40.
Neuroendocrine and cardiovascular response to sexual arousal and orgasm in men.
In this study, ten healthy male volunteers were continuously monitored for their cardiovascular and neuroendocrine response to sexual arousal and orgasm. Blood was continuously drawn before, during and after masturbation-induced orgasm and analyzed for plasma concentrations of adrenaline, noradrenaline, cortisol, luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), prolactin, growth hormone (GH), beta-endorphin and testosterone.
Orgasm induced transient increases were found in heart rate, blood pressure and noradrenaline plasma levels. Prolactin plasma levels increased during orgasm and remained elevated 30 min after orgasm.
In contrast, none of the other endocrine variables, including testosterone, were significantly affected by sexual arousal and orgasm.
Kruger T, Exton MS, Pawlak C, von zur Muhlen A, Hartmann U, Schedlowski M. Division of Clinical Psychiatry, Hannover Medical School, Federal Republic of Germany.
Is Sex Necessary?
Fans of sexual abstinence had better listen up. "Saving yourself" before the big game, the big business deal, or whatever may indeed confer some moral benefit, but physically it does absolutely nothing.
There's no evidence that abstinence sharpens your competitive edge. Being loaded may even be a distraction. The best that modern science can say is that abstinence is mostly harmless when practiced in moderation.
Regular and enthusiastic sex brings measurable physiological advantages; assuming that you enjoy it without contracting a sexually transmitted disease. A robust appetite for sex, and the physical ability to gratify it, are an indicator of perfect health,
A reluctance to engage in playful sex can be a sign that something is seriously wrong, especially if you suffer from infirm erection.
Dr. J. Francois Eid, a urologist with Weill Medical College of Cornell University and New York Presbyterian Hospital, observes that erectile dysfunction is an extension of the cardio vascular system. A lethargic member may be telling you that you have diseased blood vessels elsewhere in your body.
"It could be a first sign of hypertension or diabetes or increased cholesterol levels. It's a red flag that you should see your doctor." Treatment and exercise, says Dr. Eid, can have things looking up again: "Men who exercise and have a good heart and low heart rate, and who are cardio-fit, have firmer erections. There definitely is a relationship."