Apparently, men's penises need sunlight …
How's your man? What's he doing right now?
If you answered "Not fucking me, now or ever," you're not alone.
Twenty percent of men will suffer from a clinically low sex drive at some point in their lifetime, meaning 2 out of every 10 guys you see on the street are pulling the dreaded "Can we just cuddle instead?" card on their partners who just want slob on some knob. And while low libido in men is mostly due to stress, depression or weird, murky drug side effects, a prolonged and disruptive disinterest in sex almost always seems to stem from one thing: a testosterone shortage. Unfortunately for men and their parthers though, it's not terribly easy to boost a bro's testosterone naturally and without the use of expensive and dubiously safe pharmaceuticals or gas station pills called "Super Boner Pound Town Cum Mountain Express."
Good thing there's a shockingly easy new solution to this problem.
If your man has a low sex drive, you can just kind of, you know … shine bright lights at him. New research from the University of Siena shows that men with a lack of interest in sex could benefit from the simple and effective solution of light box therapy.
For the uninitiated, that involves no more blood sweat and tears than a man sticking his face near a specialized light that mimics the full-spectrum wavelengths of sunlight. Typically, this method is used to treat seasonal depression, but researchers are now interested in how it could bring your boyfriend's boner back from the dead.
Study researchers exposed 38 men aged 40 and above who suffer from low libido to light boxes to see if their testosterone could be increased via light exposure. All of the men in the study were treated with this therapy every morning for two weeks, but only half of them were given a specially adapted light box that gave out a less light.
Their findings showed a clear distinction in the group receiving effective light therapy and the control group.
When all the men's testosterone was tested at the end of the experiment, those who'd received the full light therapy had tripled their sexual satisfaction scores, and boosted their testosterone levels by 71 percent. The men who had received the less-bright light box experienced only a minimal increase in sexual satisfaction, and no increase in testosterone levels.
These are important findings because while the link between testosterone and male libido is well-known, little research has been done on how sunlight impacts the production of the hormone in men. Some scientists think testosterone levels fluctuate seasonally, increasing in summer and decreasing in winter, although we can personally attest to how limited that theory is …
"We do not know yet the exact mechanism by which light therapy affects the production of testosterone in the body," lead researcher Andrea Fagliolini to Broadly. "One hypothesis is that the action is mediated by an increase of luteinizing hormone, which is produced by the pituitary gland and is known to increase testosterone."
So, does this mean sex-starved men and women should start shining bright lights on their male partners, or auto-garnishing their own paychecks to afford a light box of their own?
"It's too early for a general recommendation on using light boxes," Fagliolini said. "We need more studies. However, if further studies confirm the efficacy [of this approach], then light therapy could become a treatment option."
In the meantime, it might be better idea to make sure your boyfriend gets as much natural sunlight as your precious indoor succulents, and if that means locking him outside so he can't come in and scroll through Instagram while he poops all day, so be it.