Find Your Spark

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Mood-Boosting Moves

Get in the mood for sex -- and make sure you send a clear signal to your spouse. In a two-year survey of 40 married couples, researchers at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst found that women expect their husbands to sense when they're ready for romance.

  • Eat mint ice cream. Studies show that minty smells and tastes stimulate blood flow to your pelvic region -- which is the first step toward full-blown arousal, says Alan Hirsch, M.D., neurological director of the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation, in Chicago.
  • Get physical. Remind yourself during the day that you are physical and sensual; most jobs force you to be in mental mode. A simple stretch can help. "Move your limbs around, curve your torso, and touch your toes," says Howard Devore, Ph.D., a sex therapist in San Francisco.
  • Read a book. In a study of 100,000 women, half read sexy stories, half didn't. Guess who had sex the most? Risque readers. "These women had twice as much intercourse," says Laura Corn, author of 101 Nights of Grrreat Sex (Park Avenue Publishers, 1995). "You can read any kind of sensual story, even a romance novel."
  • Give yourself a massage. Using the pads of your fingers, rub in a circular motion from your belly button to your pubic hairline. This increases blood flow to your pelvic region, says Laura Berman, Ph.D., co-author of For Women Only (Henry Holt, 2001). New research suggests that the nerve endings that stimulate the clitoris are more numerous than experts once thought -- they could even extend into this area.
  • Rent a Harrison Ford movie. Eileen M. Palace, Ph.D., director of The Center for Sexual Health, in New Orleans, recommends that you grab your honey and watch an action-adventure flick. "In our study, people who watched these movies actually had more sexual desire than people who just lounged around," she says.

Continued on page 3:  Fun Ways to Flirt

 

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