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Sexuality (A Complete Guide for Sex)

7 Foods for Better Sex:

1.Avocados: The Aztecs referred to avocados as, ahem, testicles, because of their physical shape. But the scientific reason why avocados make sense as an aphrodisiac is that they are rich in unsaturated fats and low in saturated fat, making them good for your heart and your arteries. Anything that keeps the heart beating strong helps keep blood flowing to all the right places; in fact, men with underlying heart disease are twice as likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction.

2.Almonds: Topping my list of feisty foods, almonds have long been purported to increase passion, act as a sexual stimulant, and aid with fertility. Like asparagus (another one of my favorite sexy foods), almonds are nutrient-dense and rich in several trace minerals that are important for sexual health and reproduction, such as zinc, selenium, and vitamin E.  “Zinc helps enhance libido and sexual desire,” says Dr. Berman. “We don’t really understand the mechanisms behind it, but we know it works.”
3.Strawberries: The color red is known to help stoke the fire: A 2008 study found that men find women sexier if they’re wearing red, as opposed to cool colors such as blue or green. Strawberries are also an excellent source of folic acid, a B vitamin that helps ward off birth defects in women and, according to a University of California, Berkley study, may be tied to high sperm counts in men. This Valentine’s Day, try making dark-chocolate-dipped strawberries. And while we’re on the subject, there’s a reason we give chocolate on Valentine’s Day: It’s full of libido-boosting methylxanthines.
4.Seafood: Despite their slippery and slimy texture, oysters may be the most well-known aphrodisiac. They’re also one of the best sources of libido-boosting zinc. But other types of seafood can also act as aphrodisiacs. Oily fish—like wild salmon and herring—contain omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for a healthy heart. 
5.Arugula: Arugula has been heralded as an arousal aid since the first century. Today, research reveals that the trace minerals and antioxidants packed into dark, leafy greens are essential for our sexual health because they help block absorption of some of the environmental contaminants thought to negatively impact our libido.
6.Figs: These funny-shaped fruits have a long history of being a fertility booster, and they make an excellent aphrodisiac because they are packed with both soluble and insoluble fiber, which is important for heart health. Plus, high-fiber foods help fill you up, not out, so it’s easier to achieve that sexy bottom line—or belly.
7.Citrus: Any member of this tropical fruit family is super-rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, and folic acid—all of which are essential for men’s reproductive health. Enjoy a romantic salad that incorporates citrus, like pink grapefruit or mandarin oranges, or use a dressing made with lemon and lime. 
Sex Drive: The term sex drive was first widely adopted following the introduction of the concept by Sigmund Freud in his writings about sexuality and personality development. Freud used the term sex drive as well as the more specific term libido to refer to what he initially conceived as the human biological sexual instincts. In this context, sex drive or libido was a source of human motivation and action throughout the developmental process. Later, Freud expanded his definition of libido to refer to a life energy that drove both the sexual instincts but also other human drives. Today, the term sex drive isn’t used much by researchers or sexologists (they favor libido). But, in popular culture it has become synonymous with sexual desire or an individual's interest in engaging in sex with a partner.
 If someone doesn’t want to have as much sex as you do, you might say their sex drive is low. That said, there is no measurement of sex drive and no definition of what a healthy sex drive is like. While research into sex drive usually focuses on a single aspect, most researchers would agree that there are biological, psychological, and social components to sex drive. Biological research has focused on testosterone, which is thought to be related to the sex drive, although the exact nature of the relationship is still under investigation. Social science researchers have also explored the relationship between both sex drive and social factors, like work and family, as well as internal psychological factors, like personality and stress.
Sex Drive Differences in Long-Term Committed Relationship: It’s quite common for couples in long-term committed relationships to find themselves at a point where one partner wants sex more, or less, than another, often referred to as differences in sex drive. There may be many reasons for discrepancies in sex drive and finding a way through the situation often means opening up discussion about your whole relationship, not just the sex part. It also means that cookie cutter solutions offered in the form of five-step plans don’t always work. The ideas below aren’t meant as a one-size-fits-all solution, but if you and your partner have very different levels of interest in sex and you’re not sure where to start to work on the problem, you may find this information helpful in opening up new thinking about a very old and very common dilemma.
Sex Drive Reality Check: Sexual desire or sex drive isn’t a static experience. Our sex drive may change over the course of a day, week, or month, and will change many times across our lifespan. If one of you doesn’t want as much sex as the other it might be a long-term situation, but it might not. Long-term committed relationships require negotiation and compromise and that includes sex. It’s unrealistic to think that you will get everything you want, especially if you’re expecting it all from one person. Change is always a possibility, if not always possible. Any kind of change is possible, and people’s ability to change can be unpredictable. At the same time there is no guarantee that any amount of thinking, feeling, and talking about your relationship will result in the change you want. Avoid quantification and comparison. No good will come from one or both of you feeling pressure to perform or measure up in a way that matches what you think other people are doing. Sexual desire is an exquisitely unique expression of our individuality, and comparisons serve no one.
How to Address Difference in Sex drive: It might not be the first thing you do, but at some point you’re going to have to talk with your partner about these issues. If you don’t know where to start you might want to have a look at these tips on talking with your partner about difference in sex drive.
Start with yourself: It’s easy to blame your partner for problems in your relationship without considering what role you play in developing and maintaining the problem. This is particularly true when, on the surface, one partner is asking for more sex and the other is satisfied with the amount of sex in the relationship. It’s rare that one partner in a relationship completely satisfied while the other is not. Even if you think the problems all lie with your partner, ask yourself some questions about the situation to clarify your own needs:
  • When did you become aware of a difference in sex drive?
  • Do you know how much sex you’d like to have?
  • If you’re satisfied with your sex life as it is, how do you feel when you hear your partner isn’t satisfied?
  • If you’re dissatisfied with your sex life can you describe how without talking about the quantity?
  • When you say you want sex what does that mean to you?
  • When your partner asks for sex, what is it that you imagine they are asking for?
  • Without putting all the responsibility on your partner, what do you think are some of the causes of the difference in sexual interest or desire?
  • These are only a few questions, but taking time for yourself to answer these can be good preparation for talking with your partner.
Talk to your partner: This one might seem obvious, but if you’ve been struggling with difference in sex drive for a while you may be at a point where you feel like you can’t talk about it anymore. When you get to that point it can often be helpful to seek out a counselor or therapist. Ultimately you need to be able to communicate with your partner in a way that isn’t about blaming each other. Try to remember that you’re in this together and the reason you’re struggling (presumably) is because you want to stay together. One way to change up the dynamic is to write a letter to your partner about how you’re feeling and ask them to respond by writing you a letter. Moving from talking to writing opens up many possibilities and can shake up old patterns that you both fall into when you talk about these issues.
Find a Counselor or Therapist: Some issues in relationships are so complicated and touch us so deeply that having a third party, someone who is there not for one partner or the other, but for the relationship, can be incredibly helpful. While therapy isn’t financially an option for everyone, if you can access affordable couples therapy or counseling you also benefit from the experience of other couples struggles with this very common problem. You don’t need to find a sex therapist as long as it’s a therapist who works with couples and is comfortable talking about sex (many aren’t!). 
Finding self-help resources: There are dozens of books specifically about dealing with sex drive discrepancies in long term relationships. Often these books use the terminology of the “sexless marriage.” Finding a self-help book that works for you is always a matter of trial and error, and unless you have a limitless budget, going to the library and taking some time to flip through a few titles is a good way to get a feel for the tone of the book, what sorts of direct suggestions or help the book offers, and whether or not you feel the book is speaking to you. In my opinion the best book on this subject is Mating in Captivity by Esther Perel. The book is not a step-by-step guide, but it is welcoming, easy to read, and offers the most complicated and nuanced approach for getting at what might be underneath the sex drive discrepancy that I have come across.
Explore sexual compromises: Just as you compromise with your partner on which movies you see, what you have for dinner, and maybe even where you end up living, long-term sexual relationships require sexual compromise. This doesn’t mean doing things you aren’t comfortable with, but it does mean having an open mind and being able to talk about your sexual preferences and desires honestly. Finding sexual compromise is much easier when all your sexual options are made visible. Often our sexual options seem narrow because we don’t really know what our partner desires. When we keep our desires secret it can appear as if we don’t have any, or only have the ones we are comfortable showing our partner on a regular basis. Uncomfortable though it might be, revealing our desires that we have kept hidden can be a crucial part of working through differences in sexual desire.
What Causes Different Sex Drives in Relationships?: It is common for couples in long-term, committed relationships to get to a point when they don’t have the same level of sex drive or desire to have sex. Discrepancies in sexual drive or sexual desire in a long-term, committed relationship might be the result of a range of factors. Here are just a few possibilities.
Conflict in other parts of your relationship play out in your sex life: So, you might really be fighting about money or family or work/life obstacles, but you end up playing out the fight in your sex life. Sometimes, one partner is blamed for doing this and told he is “withholding” sex out of spite. This may be the case, but the accusation can also be used as a cop out. If one of you is feeling genuinely angry or hurt or isolated, not wanting to have sex seems like a reasonable response, and not simply something done out of spite.
Lack of information or education about sex:  If one or both of you were raised with little or no information about sex or with negative messages about your right to experience sexual pleasure, that history may get in the way of you taking your sex life to a more creative or deeper level. This isn’t about finding the right sex position or the perfect vibrator. But, a lack of sexual creativity can be sexually stifling, and this can lead to frustration and eventually a feeling of inevitability that your sex life won’t ever change.
Psychological issues unrelated to your partner: We all come to relationships with our histories and these histories become part of our relationships. One or both of you might be struggling with issues related to any number of factors (such as sexual identity, orientation, problems with physical or mental health, medical or recreational drug use, previous trauma, etc…) and these struggles can leave us without energy or interest in sex.
Difference in baseline sex drives: While our sexual desire and drive isn’t a fixed quantity, at any given time we all have our baseline interest in sex and a sense of how important sex is in our life. You and your partner may simply have different baseline sex drives and/or may prioritize sex differently. This difference may not reflect some deeper issue or difference; it might just be what it is.
Too much intimacy, not enough passion: Another important possibility, one that is the focus of therapist Esther Perel’s excellent book Mating in Captivity, is that the intimacy you have developed in your loving relationship is actually putting out the fire of eroticism that fuels your sexual relationship. Perel suggests that the pressures and expectations we put on our intimate romantic relationships can directly work against maintaining passionate and erotic sexual relationships.Problems with discrepancies in sex drive can also be the result of many factors. Instead of considering the above possibilities a point of comparison, try to use them as a starting point to think about your own relationship and what you think might be going on. You can also share this article with your partner and see how they feel about it.

Healthy Sex Life Can Extend Into 80s:  A satisfying sex life is possible as you age into your 70s and 80s, new research suggests. Many older Americans are apparently taking advantage of that fact, because 68 percent of men between 57 and 85 reported having sex last year, as did 42 percent of women, according to the study’s lead author, Edward Laumann, the George Herbert Mead Distinguished Service Professor of Sociology at the University of Chicago. And, Laumann added, more older women might have wanted to have sex, but there just aren’t as many available older men for them to partner with. “Healthy people can have reasonably satisfying sexual health for most of their lives,” said Laumann. “There are challenges that arise, but it’s not aging, per se, that’s the issue. A decline in sexuality may be the canary in the mineshaft. Sexual problems may manifest before diabetes and high blood pressure.” “It’s definitely whether you’re elderly or “wellderly” that makes a difference,” said Dr. Virginia Sadock, director of the program of human sexuality at New York University Langone Medical Center in New York City. “Illness and medications make a difference in sex lives.” Other factors that can get in the way of a satisfying sex life later in life include having had a sexually transmitted disease, and having physical problems, mental health issues or relationship difficulties, the study found.The study included information from 1,550 women and 1,455 men between the ages of 57 and 85. All participated in the National Social Life, Health and Aging Project.Some highlights of the study include:

  • Having had a sexually transmitted disease (STD) in the past nearly quadrupled a woman’s odds of having sexual pain, and it tripled the odds a woman would have lubrication problems.

  • In men, a history of STD was associated with five times the risk of finding sex unpleasant.

  • In both older men and women, a common factor in sexual dysfunction and a decreased interest in sex was urinary tract syndrome.

  • Both older men and older women reported that mental health issues affected their interest in sex.

  • For men, relationship troubles also contributed to a lack of interest in sex and the inability to achieve orgasm.

  • Drinking alcohol daily improved a women interest in and pleasure from sex. Alcohol didn’t have that effect on men.

  • Hispanic women were twice as likely to report pain during intercourse.

  • Black men were twice as likely to say they weren’t interested in sex and were more likely to report climaxing early.

Sexual health is a harbinger of physical and mental health, and it plays an important role in the quality of life,” Laumann said. “Older people don’t just drop out of the picture. In general, if you’re healthy, you can be sexually active.” Sadock added: “Don’t assume that because you’re older, your sex life has to be gone. If you’re healthy and connected to someone, and you’ve had a pretty good sex life when you’re younger, then you can have a pretty good sex life in old age.”
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