Brain chemistry 'may help predict sexual future'

Researchers of the study discovered that people who show heightened brain activity while watching erotic images are likely to be more sexually active, a major newspaper reported.

Sex and relationships, Brain chemistry 'may help predict sexual future'

Scientists from the University of Dartmouth showed erotica to a group of students, and measured the activity in their brain.

When the students reported on their sexual activity six months later, those who had shown the greatest response turned out to be more sexually active.

While those students who had not reacted as much to the erotic images, by contrast, were much less likely to have engaged in sexual activity.

According to sex therapist and writer Laura Berman, there are two main factors which control both people’s response to sexual stimulation and their sexual behaviour one of which is chemical – the amount of testosterone in the body.

Testosterone is the principal hormone which controls sex drive, so someone with high levels is more likely both to respond to sexual imagery and to seek out sexual partners.

The other factor is different levels of inhibition about sexuality, is not innate but could be the result of culture and upbringing.

People who have been brought up to associate sex with a sense of shame are less likely to be sexually active, and less likely to enjoy erotic stimulus.

Berman points out that since the experiment was done in a laboratory environment, those who were inclined to be more reserved would feel especially inhibited, possibly curbing their response to the images.

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