Cerebro-spinal fluid in semen? (Was Re: breakfast ...)

Peter Alexander Merel pete at cssc-syd.tansu.com.au
Sun Oct 18 06:30:21 EST 1992


crystal at glia.biostr.washington.edu (Crystal) writes:
>... [It's a placebo effect] ...

Could be. I can't argue that it's not. All I can say is that the three 
benefits I've seen - the quantitatively and qualitatively enhanced orgasm,
the improved alertness, and the increased stamina - are persistent, and real
for me. If they're psychosomatic, that's fine. I'd go with Crowley here:
belief is not required; you do certain things, you get certain effects.

>(Read: _The Healing Brain_ by Ornstein and Sobol.  Absolutely FANTASTIC in
>getting across how what we THINK affects how we FEEL, both physically and
>mentally)

Thanks for the pointer - I shall check it out. 

>>semen is 20% cerebro-spinal fluid, so if you ejaculate it your brain and
>>spine kind of sag, and that's why males want to go to sleep after ejaculation.
>
>I'm not a biologist, but this has *got* to be the strangest crock I have 
>*ever* heard!  

I thought it was pretty bizarre. That's why I questioned it. 

>Males (and females, who do *not* produce semen, BTW ;>) want to fall asleep
>afterwards simply from the sheer exhaustion that happens from the typical
>bedroom romp.  Sex is a workout, if you're doing it right. :>  

Physical fatigue doesn't cut it. I think most men would agree that
they can get the "roll over and go to sleep" feeling from quite passive
sexual activities, provided they lead to ejaculation. Also, though sex can
be very exertative, even at its wildest it doesn't burn the calories
that squash, skiiing or running do. If it did then there wouldn't be any
such thing as a jogger :-)

>I don't know what the semen producing organs are, (prostate comes to mind),
>but rest assured that they are organs *specifically designed* for producing
>semen, and not much else.  The rationale that semen is an unhealthy
>byproduct is just not true.  Without it, YOU wouldn't be here to post... :>

Oh, the Taoists don't treat semen as some byproduct; they think it's a treasure
to be hoarded. I am likewise in the dark about the source of semen. I know 
that its mainly prostatic fluid, but just where the prostate gets the 
ingredients I don't have any idea.

>As for the celibates argument.  They don't stop producing semen.  Semen is
>CONSTANTLY being produced whether it is being ejaculated or not.  It has a
>very SHORT cellular lifespan and if it's not used, it dies and the proteins
>get reabsorbed by the body and reused.  Semen is ALWAYS being replaced. 

Um, I think you mean "sperm is always being replaced". That is true. As for
semen, I'm willing to believe that there's a certain amount of supply and
demand involved.

>(weird analogy example here: does your body stop manufacturing BLOOD simply
>because you haven't had any bleeding incidents for a decade or more? Same
>principle)

The blood analogy is one the Taoists use too. They argue that, just as you
should wait a while (weeks? months?) after donating blood, because it takes 
time to build your supply back up, so males should wait for prolonged periods 
between ejaculations. 

Further to this, as males age they are advised to wait for longer and longer 
periods between ejaculations because they don't produce semen as quickly. So 
while a buck in his late teens can feel free to paint the walls and put out 
small forest fires with the stuff, males past the age of sixty shouldn't 
ejaculate at all. I'm not saying I agree with this - that's just the way it's 
presented in the literature. However it does sound reasonable to me.

>>An obvious alternative explanation is that the effect is purely psychosomatic,
>>that it is a placebo effect. I'd subscribe to this if it weren't for the fact 
>>that I have empirical evidence of the phenomenon. 
>
>I.e., yourself?  Was this a study of one person, using yourself as both the
>control AND the guinea pig?  These sorts of studies are *extremely* difficult
>to perform *because* of the psychological aspect of them.  

Well you sure can't do it double blind ;-)

>I'd like to see
>actual data from blood tests, semen samples, electical impulse tests, etc,
>before I would believe in anything OTHER than the psychological effect.  Give
>me PHYSICAL evidence proven by proper and thorough scientific method and 
>experimentation and maybe THEN I'll believe in the technique.  (Sorry, but I'm
>a *heck* of a skeptic...)

Right, I'll just toddle along to the nearest lab and settle in, shall I?
Seriously, I'm not trying to convince anyone. I'm just curious about whether
there is a physical basis for what I'm experiencing. If anyone does know of 
formal studies, I'd be interested.

>Have your friends likewise used a "control" in their self-study?           

Only in the sense of 'before and after', and of course they might be undergoing
a placebo effect too. 

>Two things here.  
>
>1)  You've built up stamina from the exercise. It is proven that cardiovascular
>fitness can give one a lot more endurance.  You claim to have not exercised
>regularly, but you fail to consider the rave dancing as exercise.  

I grant that raving is exercise, but I did not go to more raves, or 
undergo more of any sort of exercise after beginning to retain than I
did beforehand. If anything, I've exercised less.

>2) You *MAY* have started getting better nutrition.  If you are no longer 
>taking the drugs than you are no longer impairing the functioning of various
>organs of your body that have been specifically designed to keep you healthy.

Like I said, I avoid drugs. I've sped once at a rave, and that's it. Before
learning to retain I could go four hours on fresh air and mineral water. Now
I can go ten hours on fresh air and mineral water. And feel MUCH better after.

As to nutrition - I eat all kinds of things, but my diet has not changed
significantly over the past year.

>3) Your alertness can easily be attributed to reason number 2, as well as the
>non-drug lifestyle change..

Sorry, but there's no lifestyle change to speak of.

>I'm sure there will be others better qualified than I to answer, but I
>just could NOT let this go (since quite often, these sorts of questions go
>unanswered in public, and I *hate* seeing myths perpetuated...)

I'm entirely skeptical of the explanations offered in the Taoist literature, 
and if I wasn't experiencing a marked effect I wouldn't give the practice any 
credence. As it is, I can't agree that this is a myth.

pinelr at marcus.its.rpi.edu (Rob Pinelli) writes:
>   Actually, the way I heard it from my psych professor, the orgasm is a 
>function of the parasympathetic branch of the nervous system.  That's the
>branch that serves to inhibit all of the excitory effects of the sympathetic
>nervous system.  When you have sex, your heartrate increases, your breathing 
>increases, and a lot of other changes take place all controlled by the
>sympathetic branch.  When you have an orgasm, the parasympathetic branch
>takes over, flushing your vasocongested areas, slowing your heart rate to 
>normal, slowing your breathing, constricting your blood vessels, etc.  This
>global "slowing down" mechanism is why you feel sleepy after having an orgasm.

That's a good explanation, as far as it goes. It doesn't explain why the 
"sleepy" effect becomes more marked with age, but it does give me an idea
about why not ejaculating might prevent that effect. See, you not only don't
get sleepy, but you can maintain your erection as well. That seems to imply
that a non-ejactulatory orgasm is not a "complete" orgasm - that it doesn't
get your professor's parasympathetic nervous system to kick in and spoil
the fun. If that's the case, then to hell with "complete" orgasms - incomplete
ones last much longer and feel much better and .... etc. ad boredom.

>Basically, everything in your nervous system is in a state of being brought
>down from a higher level of activity.  That's not to say that you aren't
>exhausted from the activity too!  In fact you should be! (If you did it 
>right! :)

I disagree that you should be exhausted by sex, or at least not by the usual
15 minutes to an hour. Are you exhausted by an hour's dancing? An hour's 
skiing? An hour's squash? My present experience of sex is that it is
energizing, that it makes you feel full of get-go and wide-awake. Why SHOULD
it be tiring?

kevin at neuron.arc.nasa.gov (Kevin Montgomery) writes:
>this net is just too weird for me...

I agree that this thread is about to stray way out of bionet.neuroscience's 
brief, and apologies to those that are bothered by it. Follow-ups please edit
the Newsgroups: line to remove b.n, as I shall do if this goes another round.

-- 
Internet: pete at cssc-syd.tansu.com.au   UUCP: {uunet,mcvax}!munnari!cssc-syd!pete
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