The benefits of regular, rigorous exercise are plentiful and well documented, but a new study indicates there may be one big drawback for men: a decreased libido.
Researchers at the University of North Carolina published findings in this month's Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise journal suggesting that men who exercise strenuously actually have less of a sex drive than men who exercise in moderation.
This study differs from many previous ones in that, instead of tracking exercising's observable affect on brain chemistry, it just straight-up asks men about their sex lives. There were 1,100 men polled in the study, many of whom were athletes, and the results indicated that those with moderate or light intensity workouts were more likely to report moderate or high libidos. Conversely, strenuous exercise was "associated with lower libido," per UNC professor Anthony Hackney who spoke with the New York Times.
While the research didn't specifically investigate what causes an inverse relationship between intense exercise and libido, Dr. Hackney told the Times it could be a combination of physical fatigue and exhausted testosterone supplies.
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