Sexually Active Older People More Likely To Have Better Memory, Study Finds – Sabrina Barr


Sexually active people over the age of 50 are more likely to have a better memory, a study has claimed. Drawing pictures of past experiences and eating turmeric once a day have been said to have a beneficial impact on one’s cognitive abilities.

According to a recent study published in Archives of Sexual Behaviour, engaging in regular sexual activity in middle age could also be linked to an improved memory.

Mark Allen, a lecturer in the school of psychology at the University of Wollongong in Australia, carried out research on 6,016 individuals, all of which were over the age of 50.

The data, which was collected by the English Longitudinal Study of Aging in 2012 and 2014, questioned 2,672 men and 3,344 women on a number of aspects of their lives including their health, diet and sexual activity.

The participants also completed an episodic memory test in 2012 and 2014, with Allen able to compare the results from both.

Allen came to the conclusion that while all of the adults across the board exhibited signs of memory loss, those in more sexual and intimate relationships were able to perform better at the memory tests.

This demonstrates that in the short term, frequent sex could have a positive effect on memory retention.

However, the notion that increased sexual activity can slow down the decline of memory in the long run was unfounded.

“These findings build on experimental research that has found sexual activity enhances episodic memory in non-human animals,” the study stated in conclusion.

“Further research using longer time frames and alternative measures of cognitive decline is recommended.”

In 2016, a study conducted by a team from McGill University in Canada claimed that women who have more sex have better memories.

The researchers found a correlation between the growth of the hippocampus, the area of the brain the controls emotions, memory and the nervous system, and sex.

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How To Get Over a Breakup, According to Science – Andrew Gregory


The aftermath of a breakup can be devastating. Most people emerge from it intact, but research has shown that the end of a romantic relationship can lead to insomnia, intrusive thoughts and even reduced immune function. While in the throes of a breakup, even the most motivated people can have a difficult time determining how best to get on with their lives.

Now, in a small new study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, researchers tested a variety of cognitive strategies and found one that worked the best for helping people get over a breakup.

The researchers gathered a group of 24 heartbroken people, ages 20-37, who had been in a long-term relationship for an average of 2.5 years. Some had been dumped, while others had ended their relationship, but all were upset about it—and most still loved their exes. In a series of prompts, they were coached using three cognitive strategies intended to help them move on.

The first strategy was to negatively reappraise their ex. The person was asked to mull over the unfavorable aspects of their lover, like a particularly annoying habit. By highlighting the ex’s negative traits, the idea goes, the blow will be softened.

In another prompt, called love reappraisal, people were told to read and believe statements of acceptance, like “It’s ok to love someone I’m not longer with.” Instead of fighting how they feel, they were told to accept their feelings of love as perfectly normal without judgment.


The third strategy was distraction: to think about positive things unrelated to the ex, like a favorite food. Just as distracting oneself can help reduce cravings, it may also help a person overcome the persistent thoughts that come with a breakup.

A fourth prompt—the control condition—didn’t ask them to think about anything in particular. Next, the researchers showed everyone a photo of their ex—a realistic touch, since these often pop up in real life on social media. They measured the intensity of emotion in response to the photo using electrodes placed on the posterior of the scalp.

The EEG reading of the late positive potential (LPP) is a measure of not only emotion but motivated attention, or to what degree the person is captivated by the photo. In addition, the researchers measured how positive or negative the people felt and how much love they felt for the ex using a scale and questionnaire.

According to the EEG readings, all three strategies significantly decreased people’s emotional response to the photos relative to their responses in the control trials, which didn’t use prompts. However, only people who looked at their lover in a negative light also had a decrease in feelings of love toward their ex. But these people also reported being in a worse mood than when they started—suggesting that these negative thoughts, although helpful for moving on, may be distressing in the short term.

Distraction, on the other hand, made people feel better overall, but had no effect on how much they still loved their ex-partner. “Distraction is a form of avoidance, which has been shown to reduce the recovery from a breakup,” says study co-author Sandra Langeslag, director of the Neurocognition of Emotion and Motivation Lab at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, so the strategy should be used sparingly to boost mood in the short term.

Love reappraisal showed no effect on either love or mood, but still dulled the emotional response to the photo. The authors classify love for another person as a learned motivation, similar to thirst or hunger, that pushes a person toward their partner in thought and in behavior.

That can in turn elicit different emotions based on the situation. When love is reciprocated, one can feel joy, or, in the case of a breakup, persistent love feelings are associated with sadness and difficulty recovering an independent sense of self.

Classifying love as a motivation is controversial in the field; other experts believe that love is an emotion, like anger, or a script, like riding a bike. However, the endurance of love feelings (which last much longer than a typical bout of anger or joy), the complexity of these feelings (both positive and negative) and the intensity of infatuation all signal a motivation, the authors write.


To get over a breakup, heartbroken people change their way of thinking, which takes time. Just as it can be challenging to fight other motivations like food or drug cravings, “love regulation doesn’t work like an on/off switch,” Langeslag says. “To make a lasting change, you’ll probably have to regulate your love feelings regularly,” because the effects likely wear off after a short time.

Writing a list of as many negative things about your ex as you can think of once a day until you feel better may be effective, she says. Though this exercise tends to make people feel worse, Langeslag says that this effect goes away. Her past research found that negative reappraisal also decreased infatuation and attachment to the ex, so it will make you feel better in the long run, she says.

The findings are particularly relevant in the age of social media, when photos of exes, and the resulting pangs of love, may come up frequently. “All three strategies may make it easier for people to deal with encounters and reminders of the ex-partner in real-life and on social media,” Langeslag says.

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How To Get Your Mate Up Off The Couch & Running

Running is a great team sport.

Ever get asked by mates what the attraction to running is? Or maybe you’ve got a friend who’s shown interest in running and is ready to give it a try? As you know, starting isn’t easy, so here’s how to help them take their first steps, and stick with it.

Walk first

The saying goes that you must crawl before you walk. With running, you need to walk before you run.



While you may want to get your friend up and running, for a problem-free start they need to have spent at least two weeks walking, cycling or cross-training for around 30 minutes a few times a week. This helps to build aerobic fitness and strength.

Just because you can run non-stop for more than 30 minutes, doesn’t mean you should try to get your friend to do it. Get them to start running short bursts during their regular walks and gradually increase the time running so that it is double the time spent walking until they reach one hour of exercise.

Pick a program

Instead of winging it, pick an appropriate running program for your friend’s fitness goal. There are plenty of beginner programs designed to get anyone running five kilometres or 30 minutes.

The best ones maximise training results by running the right distance at the right pace on the right day; gradually increase anaerobic threshold with each run by matching running pace to current level; and set measurable goals. Some popular options are include My Asics, Nike+ Run Club, Couch to 5km app and Medibank’s 5km Training Guide.

Don’t ignore niggles

It’s normal to have some muscle soreness when people start running for the first time. Therefore, it’s not advisable to run on consecutive days. If your friend has pain that’s sharp or severe, or is being carried from one run into the next, encourage them to make an appointment with a qualified health practitioner such as a Sports Physiotherapist.

Get the gear

Running can be a very affordable sport and doesn’t require a lot of financial outlay. But a non-negotiable is a good pair of running shoes. Often newbies dust off their old runners that have seen better days

Be a good mate and take your friend shopping for a new pair of running kicks. Head to a shop that will analyse your friend’s running gait and help them to buy shoes that will support their new pursuit.

Break it up

Encourage your friend to take breaks. Once they’ve been running for a few weeks they might feel like ditching the walk breaks on their walk/run program. But it pays to take walking or drink breaks before they’re needed to prevent fatigue or going too hard too soon. Remind them that even endurance athletes take walk/run breaks.

Be there for the ups and downs

When starting something new, there are bound to be moments when things get hard. Maybe your friend has had a bad day, perhaps they’ve missed a training session or their last run felt horrible. We’ve all had those days, so be there for your mate. Share a story of your tough runs and remind them that it’s likely their next workout will be better than the last.



Introduce them to other runners

The running community is one of the best things about running so take time to introduce your friend to other runners who can motivate and encourage them to push on or keep them accountable if you’re not around. Be mindful that early on your friend may be self-conscious or intimidated by the thought of running with others. Make sure you choose a social running group like parkrun that welcomes runners of all abilities.

Be realistic

Don’t push your friend too hard. Let them gradually build their running fitness and encourage rest days. Most of all, don’t rush them as this can lead to momentum-crushing injuries. Use your slower recovery runs as a chance to join them for runs, and be patient. Remember that the goal is to help them transition to running, not hurt them.

Register for an event

Entering a running event together can be a great motivator. Seek out a five-kilometre fun run three months away from when your friend starts their training program. Choose a run with the help of

The goal of one day completing an ultra-marathon inspires running fanatic Laura Hill to clock up the kilometres each week. With a day job in the corporate world, Laura loves nothing more than lacing up her runners and hitting the pavement to clear her mind and challenge her body.