Friday, August 29, 2008

Health Benefits of Sex

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am an open book when it comes to sex. Sex is important in every relationship and I try my best to open everyone's eye to that. Ask me anything and I will do my best to answer. That's why I absolutely loved this article I found on
When you're in the mood, it's a sure bet that the last thing on your mind is boosting your immune system or maintaining a healthy weight. Yet good sex offers those health benefits and more. That's a surprise to many people, says Joy Davidson, PhD, a New York psychologist and sex therapist. "Of course, sex is everywhere in the media," she says. "But the idea that we are vital, sexual creatures is still looked at in some cases with disgust or in other cases a bit of embarrassment. So to really take a look at how our sexuality adds to our life and enhances our life and our health, both physical and psychological, is eye-opening for many people."
Sex does a body good in a number of ways, according to Davidson and other experts. The benefits aren't just anecdotal or hearsay -- each of these 10 health benefits of sex is backed by scientific scrutiny. Among the benefits of healthy loving in a relationship:

1. Sex Relieves Stress
A big health benefit of sex is lower blood pressure and overall stress reduction, according to researchers from Scotland who reported their findings in the journal Biological Psychology. They studied 24 women and 22 men who kept records of their sexual activity. Then the researchers subjected them to stressful situations -- such as speaking in public and doing verbal arithmetic -- and noted their blood pressure response to stress.
Those who had intercourse had better responses to stress than those who engaged in other sexual behaviors or abstained.
Another study published in the same journal found that frequent intercourse was associated with lower diastolic blood pressure in cohabiting participants. Yet other research found a link between partner hugs and lower blood pressure in women.

2. Sex Boosts Immunity
Good sexual health may mean better physical health. Having sex once or twice a week has been linked with higher levels of an antibody called immunoglobulin A or IgA, which can protect you from getting colds and other infections. Scientists at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., took samples of saliva, which contain IgA, from 112 college students who reported the frequency of sex they had.
Those in the "frequent" group -- once or twice a week -- had higher levels of IgA than those in the other three groups -- who reported being abstinent, having sex less than once a week, or having it very often, three or more times weekly.

3. Sex Burns Calories
Thirty minutes of sex burns 85 calories or more. It may not sound like much, but it adds up: 42 half-hour sessions will burn 3,570 calories, more than enough to lose a pound. Doubling up, you could drop that pound in 21 hour-long sessions.
"Sex is a great mode of exercise," says Patti Britton, PhD, a Los Angeles sexologist and president of the American Association of Sexuality Educators and Therapists. It takes work, from both a physical and psychological perspective, to do it well, she says.

4. Sex Improves Cardiovascular Health
While some older folks may worry that the efforts expended during sex could cause a stroke, that's not so, according to researchers from England. In a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, scientists found frequency of sex was not associated with stroke in the 914 men they followed for 20 years.
And the heart health benefits of sex don't end there. The researchers also found that having sex twice or more a week reduced the risk of fatal heart attack by half for the men, compared with those who had sex less than once a month.

5. Sex Boosts Self-Esteem
Boosting self-esteem was one of 237 reasons people have sex, collected by University of Texas researchers and published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior.
That finding makes sense to Gina Ogden, PhD, a sex therapist and marriage and family therapist in Cambridge, Mass., although she finds that those who already have self-esteem say they sometimes have sex to feel even better. "One of the reasons people say they have sex is to feel good about themselves," she tells WebMD. "Great sex begins with self-esteem, and it raises it. If the sex is loving, connected, and what you want, it raises it."

6. Sex Improves Intimacy
Having sex and orgasms increases levels of the hormone oxytocin, the so-called love hormone, which helps us bond and build trust. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and the University of North Carolina evaluated 59 premenopausal women before and after warm contact with their husbands and partners ending with hugs. They found that the more contact, the higher the oxytocin levels.
"Oxytocin allows us to feel the urge to nurture and to bond," Britton says.
Higher oxytocin has also been linked with a feeling of generosity. So if you're feeling suddenly more generous toward your partner than usual, credit the love hormone.

7. Sex Reduces Pain
As the hormone oxytocin surges, endorphins increase, and pain declines. So if your headache, arthritis pain, or PMS symptoms seem to improve after sex, you can thank those higher oxytocin levels.
In a study published in the Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, 48 volunteers who inhaled oxytocin vapor and then had their fingers pricked lowered their pain threshold by more than half.

8. Sex Reduces Prostate Cancer Risk
Frequent ejaculations, especially in 20-something men, may reduce the risk of prostate cancer later in life, Australian researchers reported in the British Journal of Urology International. When they followed men diagnosed with prostate cancer and those without, they found no association of prostate cancer with the number of sexual partners as the men reached their 30s, 40s, and 50s.
But they found men who had five or more ejaculations weekly while in their 20s reduced their risk of getting prostate cancer later by a third.
Another study, reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that frequent ejaculations, 21 or more a month, were linked to lower prostate cancer risk in older men, as well, compared with less frequent ejaculations of four to seven monthly.

9. Sex Strengthens Pelvic Floor Muscles
For women, doing a few pelvic floor muscle exercises known as Kegels during sex offers a couple of benefits. You will enjoy more pleasure, and you'll also strengthen the area and help to minimize the risk of incontinence later in life.
To do a basic Kegel exercise, tighten the muscles of your pelvic floor, as if you're trying to stop the flow of urine. Count to three, then release.

10. Sex Helps You Sleep Better
The oxytocin released during orgasm also promotes sleep, according to research.
And getting enough sleep has been linked with a host of other good things, such as maintaining a healthy weight and blood pressure. Something to think about, especially if you've been wondering why your guy can be active one minute and snoring the next.

So get to it people!! Stay happy and healthy!! :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


It's finally here! My day of freedom!! Today I officially lost 250 pounds by making my divorce final! Man it feels amazing...

I woke up this morning with feelings of dread. Dreading the day that was about to unfold. I took a shower, got dressed and sent the kids off to school like it was any other day. I arrived at work and tried to focus on what was in front of me. It didn't happen. The only thing I could think about was closing the chapter of my life entitled "My First Marriage".

A little over nine years ago, I entered into a marriage with the intentions of spending the rest of my life with this person. We talked about having kids, having a home and growing old together. Nowhere in that conversation was divorce even a sub-topic. That's not something you want to think about when you're young and in love. But as time moved on, we grew apart and things passed the point of no return. Our relationship was beyond repair and no matter what was done or said, we couldn't make it work.

So here I am and I can't help but hold this bittersweet feeling. I am glad that the marriage is over and that I can move on with my life. I have now found my soulmate and will be starting a new life with him and our kids. But at the same time, I can't help but feel like I failed. I was unable to keep my marriage from falling apart. Nine years of my life are gone and I can't get them back.

There is something good that came out of my broken marriage. I have three of the most beautiful kids in the world. They are healthy, so smart and just plain amazing! I can look at them and know that the last nine years were worth something.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Whatta jerk...

I have had about all I can take from my ex. I despise the man and can't wait to be thousands of miles away from him. But even then, sadly, I will be tied to him for the rest of my life because of our three children.

My ex has a very negative effect on me. For years, I allowed him to push me down and treat me horribly. I changed who I was because I thought that would make him happy. I gave things up that I loved to do because he didn't like them. Everyday, I saw my wants and my dreams fall even further behind because I was not strong enough to tell him no.

Since leaving him, I've slowly climbed out of that hole. I have felt better emotionally, mentally and even physically. I have a better relationship with my parents, my sister and especially my children. But then, there are days like today where I lose myself again and fall back into that dark place.

I am so tired of dealing with this. Our court date to end our 9 year marriage is Tuesday, August 26th. I could not be any more excited. I know that he will always be a part of my life but this will close that chapter and allow me to start anew. I have made a vow to myself to not allow him to affect me like this any longer. He's not worth the energy it takes to be upset anymore.

I have to be a strong, positive role model for my kids. I have such a wonderful, bright, adventurous life ahead of me and I can't wait to start living it! I have the most amazing people around me and I am so blessed to be able to call on anyone of them in a time of need. My children are going to be alright and I know that I will be too.

Thursday, August 7, 2008 it is...

Throughout these blogs, I have written extensively about the love of my life. Baines, if you will. Baines is currently serving in the US Army as an instructor in Military Intelligence. As with anything military, his "job" takes him around the world quite frequently. (I don't like to call what he does a job. It's more of a way of life really.)

Now that things are getting more and more serious between the two of us, he has asked me to join him on this journey. Of course, in reading my blogs you already know that I have accepted. I knew going into a relationship with him meant taking on the Army lifestyle. The discipline, the order, the uncertainty of what the next day could bring. I know that it is something that I can handle, support my man everyday and do my best to raise our family, such that it is. That was until this past Tuesday.

Baines called me at work telling me he had bad news. My heart stopped as images of me kissing him goodbye as he boards a plane to Iraq flash through my head. Okay, so it's not Iraq, just Washington state. I'm speechless. I knew that he would get orders sometime but I wasn't expecting it to be this soon into our relationship. After a few minutes of stunned silence, he asks "Will you follow me to Washington?" How can I say no to the man I love? This is the life he leads and if I want to be with him, I will follow him anywhere.

As the day went on and the reality of what was happening started to sink in, I began to talk myself out of it. Anyone who knows me knows that I am damn good at doing that! I began listing all the reasons not to go.
1) It rains in Washington...alot!!
2) It's about 2,500 miles away from my family.
3) The extra stress on Baines.
4) Getting me, my kids and all our stuff to the other side of the country $$$$$$
Baines wants to continue his Army career and that means more schooling and time away. I would be left with the kids while he furthered himself and I knew that was an issue he was dealing with. He doesn't deserve that stress and I don't want to be the one to put that on him.

The one and only reason for me to follow him is simple: I love him and want to spend the rest of my life with him no matter where that may be. So, it looks like I am about to become a citizen of the great state of Washington. What do they call themselves anyway? It's a new adventure and a new life for us and our five (yes!! FIVE!!) children. Let's see where this takes us...

Saturday, August 2, 2008


I was always the maternal one growing up. I was certified in adult and infant CPR as a 11-year-old and started my own babysitting services to earn spending money. I loved being around kids and taking care of babies. Then I had my own and let me tell ya. There is no amount of babysitting that can prepare you for your own children.

First of all, when babysitting, there is always a time limit. The child's parents are eventually coming home to relieve you of your duties. Sure, you've spent the last three hours changing dirty diapers, cleaning up the Kool-Aid mess in the white carpet and being the referee as the siblings fight. But you get to go home! Not so when they're your own! As a parent, you're lucky to get to pee alone!

Secondly, as a babysitter, you can make mad money. As a teenage girl, I was raking in the dough watching the neighborhood kids and using my earnings on the latest lip gloss. Now, I have three kids 24/7 and I'm losing money! Someone needs to explain that one...

But for all these issues, I have to say there are more good moments than bad ones when you finally have your own children. Everyday, there is someone waiting for me to come home, sweep them up in my arms and kiss on them. No matter what kind of day I have had or how badly I screwed up that meeting with a client, there are three little people who still adore me. I can do no wrong in my kids eyes.