When it comes to optimizing your overall health and well-being, sex is a very important factor in this. From reducing stress, boosting self-esteem and body confidence, and building a deeper connection with your partner, sex should be at the top of your get-healthy to do list.
Now let’s face it, sex is everywhere.
It seems we can’t turn a corner without noticing a half naked women on a magazine cover or a Calvin Klein model showcasing his abs on a billboard.
We live in an overly sexualized culture and it’s not going away any time soon. Companies and media continue to push the buttons on how far they can take their ads or commercials. Sometimes, it’s rather shocking.
You would think with all the sex we’re bombarded with we would have such an easy time communicating about it, but the opposite is true.
In fact, when is the last time you had a deep, soul quenching, heart melting talk about sex with your partner? Or vocalized what you like, don’t like, what you should experiment with, how turned on your partner makes you, what your body really needs and desires, and so on and so on?
Not only are we super shy (this doesn’t imply to everyone or every couple) about openly communicating about sex, but it seems people are having less and less of it and are so disconnected from their sexual selves then ever before.
I work with a lot of women, many who are in great shape and dealing with hormonal imbalances, and others who are looking to lose weight and dealing with hormonal imbalances. Can you see a connection here? Whether you’re fit or over weight, I tend to commonly hear from my clients that they just don’t have a sex drive.
Is it the body shaming you continue to internalize every day? The comparing and negative self talk? Or are you just so damn confused about your body, your cycle and your hormones that you just don’t know where to start or who to turn to?
If your sex drive is non-existent know that you can get it back!
Your Hormones and Sex:
Yes, your hormones dictate ALOT about your sexual health.
Estrogen, or what I like to refer to as “the sex-kitten-hormone,” boosts your libido and increases your sexual desire. This hormone, which is higher during the first half of your cycle (right after your period) along with a small amount of testosterone, increases lubrication, revs of your internal sex kitten and prepares you for ovulation, the most fertile time in your cycle.
If you and your partner are looking to conceive, then this is the most optimal time to do so. On the flip side, if you are wanting to avoid pregnancy, be sure to use a barrier method, such as a condom during this time.
There tends to be two schools of thought around ovulation. Some people think if you are wanting to avoid pregnancy that you should avoid sex altogether during this time, however, your body is in the most fertile, erogenous and sexual “zone’ during this time and it’s a beautiful opportunity for you to connect with your body and your partner sexually. So in my books, I say do it!
Sex was typically thought of as a “man’s game” due to testosterone being the hormone that boosts sexual desire, however, women produce testosterone as well, along with other complex hormones, which allows us to have very robust sexual experiences.
Due to the cyclical nature of our menstrual matrix, sex feels very different to us throughout the month. If you are in tune with your body and your cycle, you understand what I mean.
During the first half of your cycle right to ovulation, you’re typically more energetic and get turned on more easily. After ovulation, estrogen dips and progesterone takes over, causing you to feel more lethargic and tired. Plus, you’ll typically find you tend to be drier and may need some extra special attention from your partner.
Although testosterone, estrogen and progesterone play a very important role during sex and arousal and a women’s monthly cycle, there are many other hormones that come into play as well.
Your Brain on Sex:
Your libido is governed by some very powerful neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and dopamine. These are your pleasure and reward hormones and once you get them excited, they’ll want to keep coming back for more and more. Lower concentrations of serotonin can decrease sex drive.
Serotonin is essential for arousal and guess what? It’s actually produced in the gut! So, if you’ve been suffering with digestion issues, gut dysbiois (overgrowth of bad bacteria), constipation, bloating and gas, theres a good chance your serotonin is running on low and your sex drive might be non-existent.
Nitric Oxide is another important component of sex. It causes vasodilation to all tissues in your sex organs to become engorged, which heightens sexual pleasure and sensitivity. Sex helps to produce nitric oxide which is not only beneficial for sex, but for oxygenating your blood and lowering blood pressure.
What about oxytocin? This is the hormone of desire and can help to facilitate climax and connect you deeper with your partner. It’s the hormone that helps new moms bond with their baby.
And lastly, cortisol. You’ll often hear me speak of this stress-hormone and how detrimental it can be to our health when produced in high amounts, but it impacts sex as well, by killing your sex drive. Are you a stress case? Well then, that could be one reason for your low libido.
Cortisol will curb all bodily functions when it feels “threatened,” ie. work deadlines, arguments, traffic jams, constantly skipping meals, etc. Yup, these are all tiny constant everyday nuances we decide to stress over and in turn suffer with a non-existent libido. High cortisol can also impact our blood sugar and insulin levels, which can then cause a hormonal cascade amongst our sex hormones such as estrogen and testosterone.
Bottom line, our hormones are delicate and when one is out of whack, it can create a domino effect and throw off other hormones. When your hormones are out of balance, not only will your sex drive suffer, but you’ll experience more weight gain, issues with fertility, PCOS, digestive health, high blood pressure, blood sugar irregularities or insulin resistance, and the list goes on!
Have MORE Sex!
Stressed? Have more sex.
Want to increase your libido? Have more sex.
Want to produce more serotonin and dopamine? Have more sex.
Want to help with hormonal balance? Have more sex.
Want to clear up your skin? Have more sex.
Want to support your partners prostate? Have more sex.
Want to support heart health? Have more sex.
Want to produce more beneficial estrogen? Have more sex.
Want to combat inflammation? Have more sex.
Want to boost your immune system? Have more sex.
Sex helps you produce incredible hormones and neurotransmitters that literally have hundreds of health benefits. Plus, it’s one of the most effective ways to combat the negative effects of stress.
I know what you’re thinking, “how can I have sex when I don’t have a libido?” Well… you just have to do it (or at least try!).
Masculine and Feminine Energy:
It’s really important that we make sexual pleasure a priority in our lives, as it helps us (both men and women) to connect to our masculine and feminine energies.
If you’re a woman who works in an office everyday, wears a suit and is constantly “taking charge of everything,” then you are constantly in your masculine energy. This is not a good thing for sex.
And for men who don’t feel like they are in charge, powerful, dominant or feel belittled and small, their feminine energy takes over. What this means for both sexes is that it can diminish your sex drive and affect how the opposite sex see’s you.
Men want to see sexual, calm, vibrant, beautiful and radiant women. I don’t mean physically. I mean it’s an aura. It’s a smell. It’s a powerful energy that comes from deep within a women. A women who knows herself, trusts herself and can shine her light without feeling threatened or feel the need to be seen and heard. She can just…be. It’s an energy that can be felt from a distance. It’s a state of flow.
Women want to see men who are strong-willed, authentic, organized, stable, reliable and supportive. A woman wants to feel non-dominant in their relationship. Woman are commonly drawn to this. A man who has his shit together on a spiritual, physical and mental level and knows how to check his ego at the door can win over a woman any day over charm and looks.
Together, these energies collide to produce a deep sexual connection that allows you to grow as a person, to connect to your desires, to make more money and well.. to achieve amazing orgasms. (yes, I said make more money!)
Your orgasms are a missing key to achieving all that you want in life. It’s not just about the sex. It’s about what the experience can make of you and how you can take that energy and bring it into your every-day. You become more of who you are and flow with ease amongst the intricacies of life.
Your body and your hormones need more sex.
If you are struggling to have sex and your libido has been missing, let’s take a look at a number of ways you can fix this:
1. From an masculine/feminine energy standpoint – take the time to tune into your energy. Where can you let go?
Are you a female that is in constant masculine energy? Where in your day can you let go? Where can you bring in more feminine energy? Maybe it’s something you wear (I say wear more dresses and skirts or put on some pretty lingerie). Are you bringing your work home? Are you always complaining? Do you need to dance, workout and move your body more? Are you doing more male dominant exercises? Do you need to be more receptive to receiving love and attention? When’s the last time you had an orgasm? (definitely the best way to increase your feminine energy!)
Are you a male that is in constant feminine energy? Where in your day can you bring more dominant, masculine energy in? Do you need to work out more? (ie. lift more weights!). Take more control of arranging dates and planning? Do you need more guy time? Do you need to be more decisive in certain areas of your life? Do you need to take a power stance and initiate more sex in your relationship? Do you need more sleep? (vital for testosterone production!)
2. Food – bottom line… are eating like shit? If you’re stuffing your face with processed foods, sugar, gluten, diet sodas, burgers and fries, then it’s time to stop. Your hormones and your sex drive just ain’t having any of that! Real, whole food supplies your body with the nutrients it needs to thrive and support your hormonal health. Ladies, if you need more direction regarding the foods that are affecting your hormones and menstrual cycle, read this article here.
Zinc is a vital mineral that supports estrogen production and protects the prostate. Eat pumpkin seeds or oysters to get this hormone balancing mineral. Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fat and vitamin E, which support the ovaries and keep women fertile. Leafy greens provide magnesium, a essential mineral needed for detoxification. Less toxins means better hormonal health. This is just the tip of the ice berg! Get my Qualitaran Life ebook that is full of 60+ healthy recipes and provides you with a ton of insight into food quality.
3. Hormonal Imbalances – I could write a very long article on the numerous hormonal imbalances we can experience and especially as women, we have a very cyclical hormonal pattern that basically repeats every month. Men on the other end have more of a 24 hour pattern. Ladies, I cannot stress it enough to chart out your cycle. Take out a calendar, write down when you get your period (day 1 of your cycle) and jot down everything over the month, from how long your period was, were you spotting, were you late, did you have cramps, breast tenderness, headaches, cravings, etc. Write down how you feel after your period, leading up to ovulation and repeat this over and over again each month.
Charting your cycle means checking your mucus daily. Are you wet? Dry? Do you have a thick-egg-white consistency? Mark all of this down in your calendar. I would even suggest checking your temperature every morning, otherwise known as your basal body temperature. Before ovulation, your waking temperatures tend to be low, typically ranging from 97.0 – 97.7. A day or two after ovulation, your temp will typically rise and stay elevated until your next period. Post-ovulatory temperatures usually rise to 97.8 degrees or higher. This is caused by the production of the heat-inducing hormone, progesterone.
You want to start by taking your BBT first thing each morning before getting out of bed or doing anything else. This will give you the most accurate reading. Also, make sure you take your temp after at least three consecutive hours of sleep.
Here’s why charting your cycle is SO important: if you are constantly dealing with PMS symptoms, clearly there is an underlying hormonal imbalance going on. If you find you have breast tenderness, water retention and weight gain right around your period, this could mean you have estrogen dominance. If your cycle is short and you get your period roughly every 20-24 days, this could mean you are not producing enough progesterone. If you are dealing with constant cravings, blood sugar irregularities and eating all the time, this could mean you have insulin sensitivity.
These are just some of the imbalances you can pick up from charting your cycle.
On the flip side, if you are on the birth control pill you cannot truly chart as you don’t produce a regular period, just a pill-bleed. Also, its important to note that the pill will rob your body is vital nutrients that help to produce estrogen and progesterone. In fact, you are not producing any of your own estrogen and progesterone while on the pill, and a low sex drive will typically result from this. Read my article here on why the birth control pill is ruining your health and hormones.
4. Stress – this is something you will ABSOLUTELY want to manage as it will exhaust you, cause mineral deficiencies, increase your cortisol, lower your progesterone and increase your insulin, all of which will lead to no sex drive. Please find ways to manage your stress. As much as I could recommend supplements here, such as Magnesium, Ashwaghanda, or Rhodiola, these are just band aid approaches to stress. You need to manage your lifestyle and the constant stressors in your every day.
5. Have Sex – I know i’ve said it over and over again, but if you don’t use it, you lose it. I remember reading an article a few years ago about a couple who committed to having sex every single day for an entire year! Whether they were in the mood or not, they made it a habit. Their experience – Not only did they want more of it, but they were happier, healthier and more in love than ever before! After 25+ years of marriage and 4 kids, they made it work. If they could do it, you could do it!
I’d love to hear from you! Are you struggling with any hormonal issues that are affecting your sex drive?
Are you thinking of committing to sex for a full year with your partner?
Connect with me or post in the comment below.
Thank you for taking to time to read this (lengthy) article and for committing to better sex and more balanced hormones 🙂