Sex makes people smarter per study by Leuner, Glasper, and Gould. PloS One will publish findings of the study which proved a link between sexual activity and neurogenesis. The group of researchers found that sexual activity stimulates a person's brain on multiple cognitive levels. Leuner, Glasper, and Gould found that "aversive stressful experiences ar etypcially associated with increased anxiety and predisposition to develop mood disorders. Negative stress also suppresses adult neurogenesis and restrics dendric architecture in the hippocampus, a brain region associated with anxiety regulation. The effects of aversive stress on hippocampal structure and function have been linked to stress induced elevations in glucocorticoids. Normalizing corticosterone levels prevents some of the deleterious consequences of stress, including increase anxiety and suppressed structural plasticity in the hippocampus" per the July issue of PLoS One.
Leuner, Glasper, and Gould also found high stress levels significantly impacted learning and memory but good stress, like sex, had a beneficial outcome. Leuner et al studied rats exposed to "sexually receptive" in a one time, "one night stand,"acute condition or for 14 days consecutive days in a chronic condition. The team measured ciculating glucocorticoid levels and repored "We found that acute sexual experience increased circulating corticosterone levels and the number of new neurons in the hippocampus. Chronic sexual experience no longer produced an increase in corticosterone levels but continued to promote adult neurogenesis and stimulate the growth of dendric spines and dendritic architecture. Chronic sexual experience also reduced anxiety-like behavior. These findings suggest that a rewarding experience no only buffers against the deleterious actions of early elevated glucocorticoids but actually promotes neuronal growth and reduces anxiety."
The team concluded that sex, even in a one night stand condition, is as good for your brain as exercise.
For more: Science 20