Sexual Health and Cultural Conformity

The ancestral health lifestyle starts with the fact that our species evolved under a set of conditions as hunter-gatherers for a more substantial period of time than our relatively short period spent as farmers. Therefore, this approach hypothesizes, we are likely better adapted to the former conditions and should mimic aspects of those conditions to optimize health. For diet, this means eating less grains and sugar, and more vegetables, meat, and fruit. It means moving our bodies, spending time outside, and playing. But what does it mean for sex?

Sex_at_DawnThe topic of sexual health seems particularly appropriate here given this blog’s focus on cultural barriers to healthy living and the intense role culture plays in our sex lives. We are scarcely aware of how deeply our culture affects our sexuality until we are exposed to cultures that treat sexuality radically differently.

I recently discovered a book that applies an ancestral health lens to human sexuality, surveying sexuality in hunter-gatherer societies and examining how those origins manifest themselves in modern sexuality. Sex at Dawn will open your eyes to a lot of mistaken assumptions we have about what a natural/normal/healthy sex life is. However, it doesn’t lead to any clear answers other than having an open mind about choices and trade-offs people make about how to live their lives. Continue reading

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