Mon, Jun 26, 2017 | updated 04:04 PM IST

Exposure to bright light can help men with low sexual drive: Study

Updated: Sep 20, 2016 11:41 IST      
Exposure to bright light can help men with low sexual drive: Study

Washington D.C. [USA], Sept. 20 (ANI): A recent research conducted at the University of Siena in Italy has found that the radiant glow of bright light may actually help some men combat their flagging sexual desire.

Researchers recruited 38 men suffering from clinically low libido to take part in a randomized, controlled experiment.

With the help of a specialized box, half the men were exposed to light that mimicked natural outdoor sunlight for a half-hour in the morning each day for 2 weeks, while the other half were exposed to much less intense light.

After two weeks, the men, who received genuine light therapy not only had higher amounts of testosterone in their blood, but they also reported a substantial increase in sexual desire and function compared to the placebo group.

Senior author of the study professor Andrea Fagiolini said, "Before treatment, both groups averaged a sexual satisfaction score of around 2 out of 10, but after treatment the group exposed to the bright light was scoring sexual satisfaction scores of around 6.3, a more than 3-fold increase on the scale we used. In contrast, the control group only showed an average score of around 2.7 after treatment."

Though the findings are small in scale and not formally peer-reviewed, earlier research has provided encouraging evidence for using light therapy to treat low libido.

Unlike these previous efforts, the authors were able to directly test how the light treatment affected testosterone levels this time around.

"The increased levels of testosterone explain the greater reported sexual satisfaction," said Fagiolini.

And the relationship between light exposure and testosterone levels is one that's become well-established, he added.

"In the Northern hemisphere, the body's testosterone production naturally declines from November through April, and then rises steadily through the spring and summer with a peak in October. You see the effect of this in reproductive rates, with the month of June showing the highest rate of conception. The use of the light box really mimics what nature does," he added.

Biologically, in addition to boosting testosterone, the added burst of light may also inhibit the ability of our brain's pineal gland to produce melatonin, which in turn produces prolactin, a protein that not only helps women lactate but is also responsible for driving down men's sexual desire following an orgasm.

Useful as that might be, too much prolactin circulating in our blood may contribute to low libido.

Though the team is encouraged by the findings, Fagiolini cautioned that it may take a while before light therapy boxes can be considered a routine treatment for low libido.

"We're not yet at the stage where we can recommend this as a clinical treatment," he said.

Adding "Even at that stage, there will be a few patients - for example those with an eye condition or anyone taking medicines which affect light sensitivity (some antidepressants, and some antibiotics, for example) - who would need to take special care."

However if this treatment can be shown to work in a larger study, then light therapy may offer a way forward.

Light therapy is already regularly used to treat people suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder as well as other forms of depression and sleep disorders.

The research was presented at the annual congress of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology in Vienna. (ANI)

Beat the blues away with spirit and spice

Updated: Jun 26, 2017 14:14 IST      By: Somdatta Saha

New Delhi [India], June 26 (ANI): If you are in no mood to get high on something hard or bored with the same cocktails on the menu, then take a sigh of relief.

Full Story >>

In most low-income places, handwashing with soap is rare

Updated: Jun 26, 2017 13:53 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 26 (ANI): A recent research has found that most families in the low-income countries don't have soaps at their homes.

Full Story >>

Femina Miss India 2017 gets its winners

Updated: Jun 26, 2017 12:55 IST     

New Delhi [India], June 26 (ANI): Femina Miss India 2017 has finally got its three new faces, with the glamorous finale last night.

Full Story >>

Social support makes retirement easy for gay men, lesbians

Updated: Jun 26, 2017 12:16 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 26 (ANI): Gay men and lesbians, who feel socially supported, feel more secure about their retirement than heterosexual adults, a recent research has found.

Full Story >>

5 apps to book your monsoon travel

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 20:13 IST     

New Delhi [India], Jun 25 (ANI): The monsoon is approaching the parts of the country swiftly and building a pleasant and pleasing environment for people to hit the roads.

Full Story >>

Digitisation of handmade industry is finally here

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 19:55 IST     

New Delhi [India], Jun 25 (ANI): India is essentially a hub, when it comes to the creation of handmade products, a category which is extremely extensive and is known to include a myriad of skills, such as gold designing, creation of customised luxury products like leather articles, cosmetics, metal-crafted items, much beyond the commonly referred handicraft and textile products.

Full Story >>

Find out if you're dating a commitment phobe!

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 15:41 IST     

London [UK], June 25 (ANI): Getting into a serious relationship is itself a major decision. But what if your partner falls into the most dreaded of all dating categories - commitment phobic?

Full Story >>

Children drinking non-cow milk little shorter than peers

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 12:06 IST     

New York [US], June 25 (ANI): A new study suggests drinking non-cow milk- soy, almond or rice milks - is linked to shorter kids.

Full Story >>

Even if you exercise, prolonged sitting is harmful: Study

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 11:00 IST     

New York [US], June 25 (ANI): The harmful effects of too much sitting are clear. A new research now shows prolonged sitting may be harmful, even if you exercise regularly.

Full Story >>

New York [US], June 25 (ANI): A team of scientists has found ancient Egyptians and their modern counterparts share less in common.

Full Story >>

Millenials use public library the most: Study

Updated: Jun 25, 2017 10:12 IST     

New York [US], June 25 (ANI): It might sound unreal but a recent report suggests those selfie-snapping, blog-posting millennials are the generation most likely to visit a public library.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], June 24 (ANI): After mesmerizing Delhiites with its energetic vibe, delectable food and spectacular ambience at CP, Hauz Khas and Nehru Place, 'Lord of The Drinks - Barrel House' is now all set to pulsate the vibes of the residents of Gurgaon.

Full Story >>

Here's why following a friend in a car is risky

Updated: Jun 24, 2017 17:21 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 24 (ANI): Drivers who follow another car to a destination are more likely to drive dangerously, according to a recent study.

Full Story >>

Here's why you should be yourself at work

Updated: Jun 24, 2017 16:30 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 24 (ANI): When it comes to your career, you may want to come out of the closet, according to a recent study.

Full Story >>

Here's why you should let your kid finger-count

Updated: Jun 24, 2017 14:44 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 24 (ANI): Turns out, this little piggy can make you a whole lot better at math. According to a recent study, counting on the fingers is the best way to learn.

Full Story >>

Brisk walk your way to Alzheimer's prevention

Updated: Jun 24, 2017 14:23 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 24 (ANI): Want to keep Alzheimer's disease at bay? According to a recent study, you may want to put on those walking shoes and head to a park.

Full Story >>

When victims become assaulters

Updated: Jun 24, 2017 14:05 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 24 (ANI): Turns out, boyhood violence victims are more likely to commit similar acts on their intimate partners.

Full Story >>

Maybe sex doesn't sell after all

Updated: Jun 23, 2017 17:39 IST     

Washington D.C. [USA], Jun 23 (ANI): The ad world has sworn by the old cliche "sex sells" for years, but it turns out, this might not be all that accurate.

Full Story >>

Iftar treats to enjoy this Ramadan

Updated: Jun 23, 2017 14:07 IST     

New Delhi [India], June 23 (ANI): "Ramadan is, in its essence, a month of humanist spirituality," observes Swiss philosopher Tariq Ramadan.

Full Story >>

Training while it's raining: What to wear while it rains

Updated: Jun 23, 2017 13:58 IST     

New Delhi [India], June 23 (ANI): The rain outside should not be an excuse to skip your daily work outs. All you need to do is put on the right gear.

Full Story >>