HERE'S good news from the doctor for a change– more and more studies are showing that getting intimate with your partner can boost your health. No partner? No problem. Since many of the purported health benefits come from orgasm, you can do it yourself. And if you have a partner who’s not often in the mood, try sharing these positive side effects of regular sex to arouse their interest.

YOU’LL SLEEP BETTER

An orgasm releases prolactin, a hormone that makes you feel more relaxed and sleepier, according to the American National Sleep Foundation.

YOU’LL BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY

Researchers at Wilkes University in the USA found that people who have sex a few times a week receive a boost to their immune system with a 30% rise in levels of an antibody called immunoglobulin A, which protects you against cold and flu.

YOU’LL LOOK YOUNGER

A Scottish researcher, David Weeks, says his experience has been that older people with an active love-life look five to seven years younger than their actual age. And quality is as important as quantity. This is due to a combination of factors, including the release of endorphins (which act as natural painkillers, reduce anxiety and aid sleep), the circulation boost from exercise, and the release of the hormone that makes the skin look more elastic.

YOU’LL GET FITTER

A team at the University of Montreal in Canada reported men burnt around 418 kilojoules in an average sex session and women managed about 292.

YOUR HEART HEALTH IMPROVES

Research found that having sex three times a week could halve your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Another study in Israel found that women who had two orgasms a week were up to 30% less likely to have heart disease than those who didn’t have sex or didn’t have an orgasm.

YOU’LL BE SMARTER

Research shows people who have sex more than once a week scored the best in tests relating to attention, memory and language among other things.

YOU’LL REDUCE YOUR RISK OF PROSTATE CANCER

Men who ejaculate more than 21 times a month are 33% less likely to get prostate cancer than those who don’t, according to a study done at various US universities, including Harvard.

YOU’LL WANT MORE SEX

Biologically, sex increases a woman’s vaginal lubrication, blood flow and elasticity, which makes sex feel better and as a result she’ll want it more. It also helps release chemicals that increase your appeal to men.

YOU’LL HAVE BETTER BLADDER CONTROL

Urinary incontinence affects about 30% of women at some point in their lives. Having regular orgasms works your pelvic floor muscles, which are the ones that help to stem the flow of urine. These muscles weaken during pregnancy and menopause and keeping them strong and toned is important.