Brain Health,

#093: Semen – The World’s Sexiest Antidepressant

September 11, 2015

Jesse brings evolutionary psychologist Dr. Gordon Gallup on board this week for an in-depth look at human semen – most notably, its apparent mood-altering effects on females. If this is your first time learning that semen might be more than just baby fertilizer, be prepared for several jaw-dropping revelations. This episode contains a lot of explicit content (not of the salacious kind), so “listener discretion is advised.” But be prepared: You might have your thinking about romantic relationships forever altered — seriously.

And that’s not all. Jesse shares some neuroscience news that may seem straight out of an evil scientist’s lair, and he also somehow manages to land up on the unlikely topic of lap-dancing in the Ruthless Listener-Retention Gimmick.

PS: From semen chemistry to the latest breakthroughs in growing brains – we surf the waves of neuroscience regularly. To join the ride don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter below.

Show Notes
  • 00:00:39

    Heading towards the fringe - the semen episode.

  • 00:02:00

    This Week In Neuroscience: Growing human brains - are we there yet?

  • 00:03:26

    The listener interaction section.

  • 00:06:10

    Jesse introduces Dr. Gordon Gallup.

  • 00:07:20

    Segregating semen and sperm.

  • 00:09:09

    Basic composition of seminal plasma.

  • 00:10:45

    Designing the survey to study mood altering effects of semen.

  • 00:12:17

    The semen barrier.

  • 00:13:25

    Semen creating an user friendly environment for sperm.

  • 00:14:48

    The half-life of semen.

  • 00:15:24

    Semen withdrawal.

  • 00:17:09

    Break-ups and rebound sex.

  • 00:18:13

    Active ingredients of semen.

  • 00:18:57

    Different routes of semen administration and dosage.

  • 00:20:34

    Reducing the risk of Pre-eclampsia.

  • 00:21:38

    Semen signature and semen familiarity.

  • 00:24:07

    The role of insemination frequency in evolution and courtship.

  • 00:26:04

    The first kiss.

  • 00:28:03

    Seminal plasma hypersensitivity.

  • 00:28:29

    Concluding remarks from Dr. Gallup.

  • 00:31:22

    Ruthless Listener Retention Gimmick: Tip your lap dancer.


  1. ben says:

    I think I got lost when they say ‘protected’, but does semen’s antidepressant effects also subside when using birth control pills?

    Since ovulation suppression doesn’t block the sperm (as in the case of a condom or vasectomy), you would expect there to be no difference between unprotected and those taking the pill in regards to lessening depression.

    Finally, perhaps taboo, but a research study of porn stars who regularly consume semen (orally and via cream-pie), might lead to a much larger sample size to dis/prove this correlation.

    1. ben says:

      A perfect group to study maybe those that read ‘Natural Harvest’ by Paul “Fotie” Photenhauer. Based on the Amazon reviews, it’s gotta be a joke, right?

  2. Rob says:

    I realise that I’m a little late to the party here 🙂 After listening to the podcast I was left with a question – were any studies done on gay and bi males on the effects in men? I understand that many of the effects are based around reproduction but it doesn’t seem unlikely that there would be at least *some* effect.

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