sex, trust and hormones

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — Orna @ 12:56 pm

Intimacy both requires and ideally engenders trust. And, researchers from Utrecht University in Holland have discovered, both sides of this coin have hormonal triggers. Think of a romantic dinner, with soft lighting and gentle caresses. Those warm, fuzzy feelings are partly the result of a pulse of the hormone oxytocin (also triggered by childbirth and orgasms) that makes a person more trusting. The flip side, researchers found, is associated with testosterone. In women, this hormone is associated with sexual arousal — but also with decreased trust. Researchers believe this makes evolutionary sense: Testosterone spikes in women when they’re most fertile, which is also a time when good decision making about a potential parenting partner is most critical. (Via The New York Times.)

bisphenol a linked to reduced male fertility

Bisphenol A (BPA), an increasingly common chemical used in polycarbonate plastics and often found in the lining of food cans, is frequently in the news because it also disrupts human hormones. Researchers have known for a while that the chemical can impair female fertility. But new research published in the journal Life Sciences found BPA may cause similar effects in males — and that the diminished fertility may persist for three generations. The study exposed male rats to low doses of BPA from conception until they were weaned. Those males went on to weigh more than their unexposed counterparts and had  lower sperm counts, less mobile sperm, defective cells in their testes and lower overall levels of testosterone and estrogen. (Via Environmental Health News.)

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