Exploring the Relationship between Food and Sexual Desire and Satiety (Part 1)
By James A Simon, MD, CCD, NCMP, IF, FACOG
Over the next few blog posts, I will discuss our appetites for food and sex. It should be no surprise to anyone reading this post that there is an obesity problem in the US. 2016 data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) show that every state in the US had at least 20% of its citizens who were obese. Every single state! Three states and DC had a prevalence of obesity between 20% and 25%, and 22 states had a prevalence of obesity between 25% and 30%. There are actually 20 states (plus Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands) that had a prevalence of obesity between 30% and 35%. If that weren’t bad enough, there are actually five states (Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and West Virginia) where 35% or more of the people living there are obese—quite a distinction! (http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/prevalence-maps.html)
While most people appreciate that there are significant health consequences to being overweight or obese (see below), few recognize the degree and severity of the bias and discrimination that overweight and obese individuals face every day. Such negative attitudes/stereotypes toward women with obesity (15%) are almost as common as gender bias (28%) and more common than racial bias (10%) (Puhl, Andreyeva, Brownell, 2008).
The medical complications of obesity are profound. They affect nearly every organ system in the human body. As it relates to general medical complications and disease, here is a short list of medical problems made worse by obesity:
- abnormal lung function
- obstructive sleep apnea
- hypoventilation syndrome
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
Idiopathic intracranial hypertension
Coronary heart disease
- venous stasis
- deep vein thrombosis
You’ll note that this list contains quite a few obesity consequences focusing on the reproductive organs (i.e. cancer of the breast, uterus, cervix, and prostate). Further, as we will discuss later, there are huge effects of excess weight on sexual desire, and reproduction, and this is not a coincidence. In The Masturbation Diet Blog part 2, I’ll discuss how women and their reproductive system are disproportionally affected by an imbalance between one’s sexual appetite (too little) and one’s appetite for food (too much). We now know these two appetites are inextricably linked. Most importantly, we can now change the balance, that is, increase the desire for sex while decreasing the desire for food. If that sounds interesting, maybe even too good to be true, stay tuned for part 2.