How magical is semen?

By Steve Korver Thursday, May 8, 2014 - 20:14
Semen has always been associated with special powers. As such, it’s a goo that sticks to both clothes and newspaper headlines. But is semen really a magical substance? Or are men just out for more blowjobs?… These news flashes and more in this week’s Sex in the Press.

One fluid, many uses

Ejaculation is the end result of a magic rollercoaster ride. Sperm cells bubble up from the testicles to the seminal vesicle where their spritely dance is joined by a milky mess of fluids, sugars, enzymes, anti-oxidants, micronutrients and antibodies – each having their own special properties. It's beautiful, really.

The resulting enchanted cocktail, once sprayed into the world, can go on to make babies. A miracle.

But semen has yet other functions. A British spymaster, with the improbable name of Mansfield Cumming, championed its use as an invisible ink during WWI, according to ‘MI6 used bodily fluids as invisible ink’ because it was always readily available. Sadly, it went out of fashion once enemy agents began recognising its tell-tale smell.

With one salty lick, these enemy agents could then confirm their suspicions.

A mythic substance

The world is literally awash with semen stories.

Traditional Chinese medicine saw semen as the “fluid of essence”; one drop was equal to “ten drops of blood”. To waste it through masturbation was considered “energy suicide” – unless you were a celestial dragon, then your dried semen would transform into jade.

In Papua New Guinea, some tribes believe that a boy can only become a man by ingesting large quantities of fresh semen sucked from elder huntsmen. And no, no, no, it's not a gay thing.

Currently, ‘Strengthening new born babies with semen in Southern Africa’ is making the social media rounds. This age-old practice of smearing a baby in semen is thought to be a tonic against diseases.

Be happy, swallow semen

In today’s media landscape, semen has become associated less with “magical powers” and more with “major health benefits”. For example, you will look younger if you rub it on your face, or you will decrease your chance of getting breast cancer if you swallow it. Unfortunately, the science behind such claims is still sketchy.

In fact, some of the researchers behind these studies can be accused of having a conflict of interest: perhaps they are just out to fulfill their male fantasies.

“Giving blow jobs makes women happier” and “Oral sex can help women beat depression!” are headlines that reappear every couple of years. Unfortunately these stories are based on research from over a decade ago that is “far from conclusive”, according to ‘Every man’s favorite sex study’.

Meanwhile, cookbooks and cocktail manuals herald semen’s “wonderful texture and amazing cooking properties. Like fine wine and cheeses, the taste of semen is complex and dynamic.”

Tell that to those enemy agents.

Animal semen research

Men desperate for blowjobs are likely better off referring to recent, and generally more reliable, studies on animal semen.

“Certain females consume male ejaculate and sperm as if they were food, using the nutrients to fuel their own bodies as well as their eggs,” according to ‘Sperm as superfood? It's a healthy snack for squid and other critters’. (So perhaps it’s true that semen resembles a “protein-infused sports drink”.)

“The brighter a mallard's bill, the more effective their sperm is at killing off bacteria,” according to  ‘Brighter duck bills indicate “killer” sperm’. (So perhaps it’s true that applying semen on the skin can help fight infections and disease.)

But only further research will uncover the many different ways in which human semen is truly miraculous.

Meanwhile there’s this: ‘Semen ingredient drastically enhances HIV infection’. Not so magical.

Know any other sacred semen stories? Do you think guys will say anything for a blowjob? Leave a comment below or join the discussion on Facebook.

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