The REAL Reason Why A Hot Sex Life Makes You So Much Happier

In the first experiment, the researchers recruited 335 Americans online and quizzed them about their relationships, how often they had sex, how happy they were, and how often they kissed or cuddled with their partners. Researchers then repeated the experiment with 74 couples from San Francisco. While both sex and frequency of touch were linked to increased life satisfaction, the researchers concluded that it was really the affection—not the sex—that explained the feel-good vibes experienced by people who get it on more often.

Next, the researchers asked 106 Swiss couples to keep diaries and found that the more the couple had sex over a 10-day period, the happier their relationship satisfaction was. A follow-up study found that those same couples were more likely to report “experiences of affection” several hours after having sex, not just in the immediate aftermath. (Mix things up with this 20 Function Bullet Vibrator from the Women’s Health Boutique.)

One caveat: As Science of Us points out, because the study relied heavily on surveys and participant diaries, it’s hard to actually determine what’s actually responsible for the feelings of happiness sex provides (i.e. is it your overall well-being? The sex? The cuddling? Which came first?). Still, if nothing else, this study just reinforces what most people already know: Sex and cuddling aren’t just fun—they’re actually healthy for you.

The article Having Sex Once a Week Is the Equivalent of a $50,000 Raise originally appeared on Men’s Health.