With more than half of the United States population on a diet, weight loss is clearly on our minds. But should you include intercouse in your weight management plan? We investigate.
Intercouse helps us burn calories. But the benefits don’t stop there according to healthline.
Intercouse is exercise
In 2013, Prof. Antony D. Karelis, along with colleagues from the Université du Québec à Montréal in Canada, studied exactly how many calories we burn when we get our groove on.
Prof. Karelis explains in his article in the journal PLOS ONE that only a handful of studies have attempted to shine the spotlight on the physiological effects during partnered intercouse with human subjects. All previous studies showed an increase in heart rate.
For his study, Prof. Karelis worked with 21 heterosexual couples, aged between 18 and 35.
The couples were asked to have intercouse once per week for a period of 4 weeks, while wearing an activity tracker that allowed the research team to calculate how much energy they spent each time.
A love making encounter included foreplay, intercourse, and at least one climaxing by either partner, then “ended at the couple’s discretion,” as the authors explain.
Here is what the team found.
Men burned on average 101 calories and women 69 calories when they had intercouse. The average intensity was higher than walking but lower than jogging, Prof. Karelis explains, putting it firmly in the category of moderate-intensity exercise.
This means that each time we have intercouse, it counts toward our 150 minutes of weekly exercise.
If that’s not appealing enough, the data revealed more.
The range of calories burned during intercouse varied considerably. At the lower end, men burned 13 calories and women 11.6, while at the top of the range, men shifted 306 calories and women 164.
Let’s look at these numbers into the context of how long each love making encounter lasted. While the average duration of foreplay, intercourse, and climaxing was 24.7 minutes, the actual time the couples spent having intercouse ranged from 12.5 to 36.9 minutes.
Whether the top calorie-burners had more vigorous intercouse or just took their sweet time isn’t clear from the data, but we can draw some conclusions. If we want to increase our calorie loss during intercouse, we can either get more actively involved, keep at it for longer, or a combination of both.
Prof. Karelis also compared intercouse with regular gym exercise. He found that men burned between 149 and 390 calories during a 30-minute, moderate-intensity session on the treadmill, while women burned between 120 and 381.
When asked to compare the two activites, all of the men and 95 percent of the women in the study said that interesting was more pleasant than pounding the treadmill.
So, we are not only making considerable headway toward reaching our 150-minute weekly exercise goal when we have intercouse, we also stand to gain more pleasure than from a gym visit.
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