Is Swallowing Semen Bad for Me?

Performing oral sex on a male partner typically has the same, familiar outcome as other kinds of sex: out comes the cum. For some couples, the performing partner will swallow his or her partner’s semen, and some people wonder what the health benefits and risks of “the big gulp” might be.

Frankly, as long as you’re in a healthy, trusting relationship and you have both tested negative for any STDs, there is nothing in semen that is either harmful or beneficial to your health when swallowed.

When a guy cums, he produces about a teaspoon of fluid, which includes sperm (of course), protein, enzymes, fructose and mucus. Semen’s not fattening or high in calories—there are only about 5 calories in the typical ejaculation—and there is no substantial nutritional value in there either. Honestly, that whole myth about cum being “high in protein” has got to stop. Just because it comes from a human body doesn’t mean it has anywhere near enough protein to give you an energy boost. Though, to be fair, you may experience feelings of high-energy exhilaration simply because you’re having some safe and frisky fun between the sheets.

The important thing to remember is that oral sex can transmit STDs just as easily as intercourse. If you are hooking up with a new partner and are unsure if he or she has been tested, the first step is to just talk about it. At Beforeplay.org, we’re huge advocates of diving into conversation and getting the answers you need to feel comfortable. Beyond that, condoms are a great way to protect yourself and your partner. There are lots of interesting, flavored varieties that are specifically designed to keep you safe during oral sex. So if you’re not interested in swigging down your partner’s semen, feel free to spit it out afterwards or catch it in a condom before it even hits your tongue.