Before you peck your partner on the cheek ahead of another night without a little romp under the covers, you might want to reconsider because it turns out that getting your regular dose of sex can take years off you.
Research shows that older men and women who regularly make love look between five and seven years younger than their actual age.
Psychologist Dr David Weeks from the Royal Edinburgh Hospital surveyed thousands of men and women of all ages over a 10-year period and said pleasure derived from sex is a crucial factor in preserving youth and leaving people looking younger.
Previous British research has linked an active love life with decreasing the likelihood of premature death by half.
Weeks told Mail Online that his main message is that love-making is good.
According to his findings, those who looked younger than their years claimed to have sex on average 50 percent more – in the 40 to 50 age group – which equated to three times a week rather than twice.
And it wasn’t just the fun that comes from sex that made people look and feel great but the release of certain hormones in the body.
For one, sex releases feel-good endorphins that relaxes muscles, eases stress and makes us sleep more soundly. Secondly, lovemaking is like a quick workout as it burns fat releases substances which bolster the immune system and boosting circulation, which is important for the heart and gives skin a healthy glow.
Lastly, human growth hormone is released which is believed to help keep the skin elastic.
Weeks said that people need to be made aware of the benefits of a healthy love life and that ideally, we should be sexually and physically active right into old age.
He added that sex shouldn’t ever be seen as limited to just the younger folk because stereotypes that elderly people get their pension and bus pass and abruptly stop having sex is completely untrue.
In fact, he found that those who look younger than their years because of regular lovemaking also tended to be married to a younger spouse – probably because their looks belied their age.
“Sexual satisfaction is a major contributor to quality of life, ranking at least as high as spiritual or religious commitment and other morale factors, so more positive attitudes towards mature sex should be vigorously promoted,” he added.
The findings of the study were presented to the British Psychological Society conference.