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Regular sex in a quality relationship might be very good for women. Scientists at the University of California wanted to learn more about the theme, so they investigated whether it provides measurable benefits for the body and the mind. They studied the relationship of this combination with stress on 129 women. They also measured telomere length – the protective cap around chromosomes –, related to longevity.

Nothing significant was revealed until they looked at women who reported having sexual intimacy during the week of the study. Their telomeres were significantly longer. Telomeres protect chromosomes from fraying and, therefore, protect the integrity of the DNA. With time, they shorten, leading to a reduction in cellular activity and, consequently, aging.

Lead researcher Tomás Cabeza de Baca says one guess as to what is happening is that sexual intimacy might be dampening stress response systems and lifting immune responses. Over time, these patterns of stress function should result in longer telomere length.

The study is still preliminary, using a small sample of women. The research shows the need for further study in order to verify how sex and love also affect men. The report was published in scientific journal Psychoneuroendocrinology. Click here for full article.