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Women who take antidepressants and experience sexual dysfunction may benefit from regular, moderate workouts.
A new study from the University of Texas in Austin says that engaging in exercise a the right time holds the key to a more satisfying sex life. Since women are two-and-half times more likely than men to take antidepressants, and since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention claim that 10 percent of Americans over the age of 12 are on antidepressants, this can only be good news.
Researchers recruited 52 women taking antidepressants who admitted to low libido. For the first three weeks, they were asked to engage in sexual activity with no exercise routine. Then they were asked to add three 30-minute sessions of strength training and cardio exercise to their routine and to have sex three times a week. The women were then divided into two groups and asked to exercise either immediately before sex or exercise in a way that was not related to sexual activity. For the final three weeks, the groups switched.
After all that, researchers found that the women who exercised before sex enjoyed a higher libido. In fact, all the women self-reported a higher orgasm level when they were exercising at any time. However, if they broke a sweat immediately before sex, their enjoyment peaked.
"Considering the wide prevalence of antidepressant sexual side effects and the dearth of treatment options for those experiencing these distressing effects, this is an important step in treating sexual dysfunction among women who are taking antidepressants," said Tierney Lorenz, an Indiana University post-doctoral research fellow who led the study. "These findings have important implications for public health, as exercise as a treatment for sexual side effects is accessible, cheap and does not add to burden of care."
Source: MedicalNewsToday, Depression and Anxiety
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