(WTAM - Cleveland) - There are lots of documented positives to having a healthy sex life. Unfortunately, burning calories isn't one of them.
You may have heard the urban myth that it's possible to burn up to 300 calories during sex. Unfortunately, that's about 15 times the actual amount.
David Allison, a biostatistician at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, decided to investigate the claim as part of a study into widely-health beliefs.
Allison discovered that intercourse lasted about six minutes on average and that the energy output equated to a paltry 20 or so calories - about the same as walking.
His report in the New England Journal of Medicine says false assumptions such as this are the part of the reason for the obesity crisis.
Dr. Sheryl Kingsberg isn't surprised by the study. She is chief of behavioral medicine at University Hospitals Case Medical School. Dr. Kingsberg tells Newsradio WTAM 1100 that most of the benefits of a healthy sex life are mood, quality of life and relationship building.
Dr. Kingsberg says you CAN burn more calories during sex, but you need to be creative and engage in some more strenuous activity.
And while morning sex may not substitute for a trip to the gym, Dr. Kingsberg says you can use it to get energized so you WANT to go to the gym!
Get breaking news sent to your mobile phone. Text "news" to 21095.