Sex is a powerful thing. It has the power to improve your mood and even reduce your waistline, and sex once a week can even increase longevity. But what if you don’t have regular sex or if you don’t have sex at all? The health effects of being single vary depending on your health, age, and even the type of sex you had, but you’ll likely see some impacts.

For men in particular, you are likely to suffer from these health problems if you stay dry for a long time.

Use it or lose it. Men who have infrequent sex are twice as likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction as men who have it once a week or more.

  • Your risk of prostate cancer could increase.

If your dry spell extends into the personal pleasure zone, research indicates that’s not healthy. Guys who stop having sex may be missing out on the prostate-protecting benefits of frequent dating.

Several studies have concluded that “high ejaculation frequency” (meaning jerking off at least 4.6 to seven times a week) is linked to a lower risk of prostate cancer.

Since the penis is a muscle, frequent intercourse can help preserve potency in the same way physical exercise helps maintain strength.

  • Your blood pressure may increase

Sex seems to help lower your blood pressure. It makes sense considering what it does: it adds a bit of aerobic exercise and muscle building, and it can relieve anxiety and make you feel better. Both of these can help you keep your numbers where they belong.

  • Your immune system may weaken

Weekly sex seems to boost your immune system compared to having sex less often. Part of the reason may be that it increases levels of a germ-fighting substance called immunoglobulin A or IgA. But more is not always better here. People who had sex more than twice a week had lower IgA levels than those who didn’t have sex.