Researchers from the Kinsey Institute at the University of Indiana have proven in a new study that more sex affects the immune system and boosts fertility – meaning, the more the sexual activity among couples, the better fortified the immune system and the better the womb is trained to accept pregnancy; and the lesser the sex, the opposite.
To this end, the new study upholds the wisdom of sexual activity even during “non-fertile” periods. It is true that women are more fertile during certain days than in others, but physicians still advise that it is better for couples to engage in more frequent sex because it activates certain hormones that prepare the body for conception.
In order to better establish the effect of regular sex on chances of conception, the researchers recruited 30 young and healthy women into the study. Biological data across their menstrual cycle were taken and analyzed. The women were divided into two groups – a sexually active group, and an abstinence group.
Tierney Lorenz, lead author of the study, explains that the objective of the study among other things is to understand how sex outside the “fertile window” could impact on the chances of getting pregnant.
Ultimately, the researchers were able to prove that “helper” T cells are grouped into two in the human body. Type 1 helper T cells prime the body to reject and dismiss foreign threats that invade the body, but type 2 helper T cells sensitize the body to accept invaders such as sperm or an embryo.
During the luteal phase of their menstrual cycle, participants in the sexually active group recorded higher levels of type 2 helper T cells – meaning that their body was anticipating and preparing itself to accept pregnancy. They also had very high amounts of type 1 helper T cells during the follicular phase of their menstrual cycles, just because sexual activity stimulated the ovaries’ follicles to mature and ripen in time.
For women who abstained from sex, these changes were not observed in their bodies during their menstrual cycles.
Furthermore, sexually active women also showed higher levels of immunoglobulin G antibodies which fight infections without affecting the condition of the uterus in any way when such women are in their luteal phase, and richer amounts of immunoglobulin A antibodies which prevent sperm assimilation and fertilization during their follicular phase.
This was not observed in women who abstained from sex.
This means that regular sex makes the body to undergo changes that impact the immune system and improves fertility.
Lorenz states that this is the first study of its kind to show that the body’s response to sex and other related social behavior. This study would help researchers and physicians to help couples willing to conceive a baby, and also patients suffering from autoimmune disorders.