A recent article came out regarding inflammation causing female sexual dysfunction. The article -— The Metabolic Syndrome: a Cause of Sexual Dysfunction in Women
by K Esposito et al., published in the International Journal of Impotence Research
looked at the relationship of the metabolic syndrome and levels of C-reactive protein to female sexual dysfunction.
Metabolic syndrome is a condition defined as having at least three of the following:
- Obesity: In this study, they used abdominal fat as defined by a waist circumference of >102 cm in men (about 40 inches) and >88 cm (about 35 inches) in women
- Low HDL levels (the good cholesterol): (<40 mg/dl in men or <50 mg/dl in women)
- High triglycerides: Elevated triglycerides >150 mg/dl
- Elevated blood pressure: >130/85mmHg
- Abnormal glucose sensitivity: fasting glucose of >110 mg/dl
C-reactive protein (CRP) is a protein produced during systemic inflammation in the body. It has been used to determine risk of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease.
This study used the Female Sexual Function Index score to measure sexual function in their study group composed of pre-menopausal women (age range 20-48 years) and controls (a group of similarly aged women without metabolic syndrome). FSFI domains include desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, overall satisfaction and pain.
Total score is 36
Good level = >30
They then compared FSFI, CRP and metabolic syndrome. They found that women with the metabolic syndrome showed statistically decreased score in arousal, lubrication, orgasm and satisfaction.
They also found that women with metabolic syndrome had lower FSFI and higher CRP levels — 2.2 vs 0.8 mg/L.
So the bottom line is that having the metabolic syndrome can increase inflammation and can lead to bad sex. The key is to keep inflammation down. So take care to keep blood pressure down, keep the bad cholesterol down and good cholesterol up, minding your sugar levels, and keeping the weight down. Not only this is good for the heart and but also for your sex life.