I just read on a website in the “ladies magazine” genre, that it is not wise to eat sweets before sex. Full stop. No further explanation. Only that it can give you a yeast infection. That’s a bit short-sighted. What is it really about?
Can you get a yeast infection from oral sex?
Let’s start with the scary part: fungal infection. Candida is a fungal infection caused by yeast-like fungi. The Candida albicans is a yeast that occurs in everyone on the skin, in the mouth, in the bowels and in the vagina. Together with the bacteria present, the yeast forms a balance. So there is nothing wrong with it. But this yeast can become a fungus under the influence of various factors, such as medication (antibiotics also kill the good bacteria, so the yeast is not sufficiently inhibited), or a weakened immune system. In women, this can manifest itself as a vaginal yeast infection. You then suffer from secretion with an unusual odor or color, itching, pain or burning sensation. But a fungal infection can also occur on or around the penis or anus. Time to visit your doctor!
At least one scientific study has shown that such a fungal infection can be caused by oral sex. Or, more accurately, through transmission of saliva to the genitals. So even if you wet your own hand or fingers in your mouth when masturbating, you can get a yeast infection.
It’s all about the balance
Note the word “can”. Because in order to contract the infection, there must be ‘things’ in the saliva that can enhance the yeast formation, thus upsetting the balance in the vagina or on the penis. For example, the study mentions ‘bread’ as a possible culprit. If you have just eaten slices of bread and there are still tiny leftovers in your mouth, you can transfer yeast from the bread through the saliva.
Candida feels most comfortable in a warm moist environment and feeds on sugars. So if you’ve just eaten something sweet, and there may be leftovers in your mouth, it’s possible for sugar to get into the vagina. Or under the foreskin of the penis, or in or around the anus (after rimming). You can still clean the penis and anus fairly easily, by washing or showering after sex. But if the sugars get into the vagina, that’s a different story. Washing in the vagina can also have a disruptive effect and then the cure is worse than the disease.
In short, be very careful not to get sugar in the vagina. For that reason, don’t put a lollipop in your snatch, don’t squirt whipped cream in it for fun, don’t fuck an ice cream cone, and don’t use a licorice stick as a dildo. Anyway, you get the point.
What about water based lube
Some say you shouldn’t use water-based lube either for this reason. The reasoning is that most water-based lubricants contain glycerin to make the lubricant thicker. Glycerin is also used as a sweetener. So: DANGER!?
Yet this is a misconception. Glycerin is in fact an alcohol. If glycerin is a cause of fungal infection, it is because of its osmolality. Glycerine has the property of extracting moisture from the outside air and passing it on to the cell walls. That’s why it works well as a moisturizer. The theory is, that if you use glycerin in a vagina, it is precisely not extracting moisture from the air, but from the cell walls. As a result, it would dry out the vagina, which in turn could cause infections. Yet millions of women around the world use water-based lubricant without experiencing any problems. Therefore, the truth is quite complex and also not black and white. In another blog post about the danger of glycerin in lubricant, I explain this in detail.
OK, so avoid sugar in saliva and in your vagina?
Right. Especially if you often suffer from a yeast infection, then you better be careful. So be careful with sweets during sex, or in the break during sex. Also be careful of alcoholic beverages. These also often contain yeast and sugars.
You would say that brushing teeth before sex is a good idea. But alas. In doing so, you can actually damage the gums. Bleeding gums, in turn, can cause the transmission of infections and even venereal diseases. Brushing your teeth is ok, but do it well before your date, and not 5 minutes before you start giving oral sex.
So is there nothing good at all about sugar and oral sex?
Well, that’s not true either. In fact, you can actually influence the taste of the vagina and of semen by what you eat. Eating lots of sweet fruit – think mango and pineapple – does make the taste of semen and the vagina sweeter.
However, this does not work immediately. Your digestion needs several hours to digest the fruit and disperse the sugars in your body. So if you want to improve the taste of oral sex for your partner, it is wise to regularly eat sweet fruit for a few days in a row. But again, not just before having (oral) sex, because of the sugars in your saliva.
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