Overweight and Sex Drive: Does Extra Weight Affects Sex Negatively?
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Being overweight can negatively affect your sex life in a number of ways.
Obesity carries with it a number of health and lifestyle issues, not the least of which is the negative impact it can have on your sex life. But you do not have to be technically obese to have weight interfere with intimacy. Even being a little overweight can have emotional and physical consequences that can negatively affect sexual wellness.
How Does Your Body Weight Affect Libido?
Studies have found that more than 30% of people that consider themselves overweight and seek help for weight loss indicate problems with sex drive, desire, performance, or all three. While there is certainly a psychological aspect like the low-self esteem caused by body image that can lead to loss of sex drive – there is increasing research that shows lack of libido can often be traced to physical conditions that co-exist with obesity.
Our doctors have found that medical conditions such as high cholesterol and insulin resistance – an early indicator of type 2 diabetes – do have the ability to impact sexual performance, which in turn impacts desire, particularly in men.
Can Being Overweight Cause ED?
Being overweight does not necessarily cause erectile dysfunction or ED; however, men who are obese or overweight suffer a number of “comorbid conditions,” all of which can negatively impact your ability to get or maintain an erection.
Men who are overweight often suffer from diabetes, high blood pressure, and or heart disease. All of these conditions add up to what doctors refer to as metabolic syndrome. Any one of these conditions can cause ED; diabetes, in particular, is known to cause ED.
This is because there are many health issues that come with diabetes, such as lack of nerve sensitivity and poor circulation, that definitely impact sexual performance and your ability to achieve or maintain an erection.
High blood pressure and heart disease also can lead to ED because of the impact these conditions have on circulation, and good blood flow is essential for getting an erection.
Perhaps most significantly, men who are overweight tend to also have low testosterone and below normal levels of another critical hormone -human growth hormone (HGH.) Both of these hormones play an important role in sexual function and libido.Similarly, ED, and in particular obesity-related ED, can be helped by growth hormone replacement therapy.
Studies have shown that men with low testosterone are 100% more likely to have problems with ED than are men with normal testosterone levels. In addition, research has found that testosterone replacement therapy may be able to help certain men suffering from erectile dysfunction.
Similarly, ED, and in particular obesity-related ED, can be helped by growth hormone replacement therapy.
Can Being Overweight Make You Infertile?
Research has shown that being overweight or obese can indeed affect a couple’s ability to get pregnant. In fact, according to The American Society for Reproductive Medicine, obesity is the cause of fertility issues in about six percent of women trying to become pregnant for the first time. This is because obesity affects fertility by changing the way a woman’s body stores sex hormones.
Obesity is a problem for men who want to become fathers as well because excess weight leads to low sperm counts.
What You Can You Do to Improve Your Sex Life?
There are many things you can do to improve sexual satisfaction and sexual performance, from certain lifestyle and behavioral changes, to proven medical interventions.
There are many lifestyle changes you can make that can improve your sex life. Since this page is about the impact of weight on sexual wellness, let’s start right there. In bed, you really are what you eat, and losing weight can definitely improve sexual wellness.
A generally good diet that leads to maximum health overall- low in fat, low in inflammatory foods, high in lean protein, and a variety of fruits and veggies – can also improve libido and performance. There is some truth to the claims of certain foods being an aphrodisiac.
Consider these sex drive and performance-boosting foods:
- Dark chocolate
- Oily fish
- Hot peppers
- Olive oil
As you can see, losing weight can certainly help to jump-start your sex life. But don’t stop there! Here are a few other simple lifestyle and behavioral changes you can make that can improve your sex drive and sexual performance.
Stress Reduction – Stress can certainly impact sexual performance in a number of ways. If you want to ensure a more satisfactory sex life, try to find and practice some stress reduction techniques such as yoga, meditation, or Tai Chi.
Exercise More – Being sedentary negatively impacts sex. Getting regular exercise will not only help you to lose weight, and you will get those benefits already discussed on the page, but exercise will increase your self-esteem and your overall strength and stamina, all of which can improve sexual performance.
Skip Happy Hour – It may seem as if alcohol can enhance your sex life, but excessive drinking can actually lead to depression and erectile dysfunction. Cutting back on your consumption of alcohol can improve your sex life.
Quit Smoking – Need another reason to quit cigarettes? Here it is – smoking can cause ED and negatively impact your libido.
Get Creative – A decrease in libido, particularly among couples in long-term relationships, often is just a matter of boredom. Don’t be afraid to try some new positions or “fresh ideas,” like watching an adult film together or some role play.
- Prescription medications – Men have quite a few options available right now for prescription medications that can treat both ED and low sex drive.
- Hormone therapy – ED, low libido, and other sexual health issues in men are often the results of hormone imbalances such as low testosterone. If that is the case, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for men could help.
What are the benefits of HRT for overweight people?
If you are overweight and diagnosed with hormonal issues such as low testosterone or age-related growth hormone loss, HRT can help in many ways, not the least of which are helping you lose weight and increasing sexual performance.
Tips for Still Having Great Sex Even If You Are Overweight
The best thing an overweight person can do to improve their sex life is to lose weight, but losing weight takes time. For some, it can be very difficult to lose weight; for others, they may be perfectly happy with their bodies the way they are, even if they are a “plus-size.” Such folks can still have a happy and healthy sex life by following these tips:
- Try positions that are better for heavy people – The Traditional Missionary is one of the most popular and versatile positions you can try. It’s great because it’s totally achievable for just about any body size and allows for a close connection with your partner.
- Use pillows – For a person of size, pillows – or particular “wedges” that have been made for this purpose that are made out of industrial foam can help make sexual relations easier and more comfortable. Placing a pillow or two under the receiver’s hips will help to facilitate intercourse.
- Use lubricant – Heavy people have more skin-to-skin contact, which means more friction. Sex therapists say that overweight people should not be afraid to use lubricants to make the entire sexual experience more pleasurable.
Frequently Asked Questions About Sex and Obesity
Does obesity make having sex more difficult?
Yes, being overweight can make sexual relations more difficult, but not impossible. If you or your partner are overweight, you can make intimacy more pleasurable by using positions that are better suited for heavy folks, or using pillows and lubricants as mentioned above.
Does losing weight affect sex drive?
Weight loss can improve libido in a number of ways. It can raise testosterone levels which is known to improve libido. It can give you more energy which can improve performance, and when you look and feel better, you will be more inclined to want to have sex.
Can sex help you lose weight?
Sex is exercise, and any exercise can help you lose weight, but you do not really burn many calories during sex. Men, on average, burn about 100 calories, and women only around 70 in a 30-minute session. Compare that to light running, where men and women both burn about 200 – 260 calories in 15 to 20 minutes. But sex can help you lose weight in that having a better sex life can and should serve as an incentive to get in better shape.
Now that you know a lot more about how being overweight can impact your sex life, why not call us today and explore medical weight loss options that could also include the many other life-changing benefits of hormone therapy?