First Check

Fact-check: Examining the myth about regaining virginity


Water boiled with groundnuts cannot help you regain your virginity. Is there any other way? 

A viral video on YouTube – with 39,155 views at last count – claims that drinking water that is strained after boiling groundnuts for 5 days will help you regain your virginity. In a world where “views” tend to determine the legitimacy of information, it is important to examine the truth behind such claims on social media.

Let’s start by understanding what is meant by “virginity” in the medical lexicon. According to a study done on “virginity testing”, virginity for females is defined as the state when one’s hymen is intact.

What is a hymen you ask? Dr Jennifer Gunter, a renowned Canadian-American gynaecologist and author, explained the same in a series of tweets. The hymen, she writes, is a leftover collection of cells that typically partially occludes the vaginal opening. The hymen is more rigid at birth and provides more covering for the first three years to keep urine and faeces out of the infant vagina, which lacks estrogen and so is very sensitive to irritants.

The gynaecologist goes on to say that the hymen is like baby teeth. It serves a biological purpose for a narrow developmental window and then, when no longer needed, is discarded.

Which raises the question – Is there a need to regain virginity? Virginity is, typically, defined as a state when an individual has not engaged in penetrative sexual intercourse. Which is why “virginity testing” involves the two-finger test where the state of or lack of hymen is assessed.

However, scientific evidence shows that it is not necessary for the hymen to have any abnormality post sexual activity. This practice has no scientific basis and the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended the elimination of the testing due to the psychological impact it has on those who are subjected to it.

Another possible explanation for the claim made by the YouTube video is that it refers to the tightening of the vagina. The muscles around the vagina can become lax with age, childbirth, or sexual intercourse. Dr Manju Hotchandani, the chief coordinator of Department of obstetrics and gynaecology at Moolchand Medcity, Delhi, India, disputes the claim by saying that the only scientific ways to regain vaginal muscle strength is Kegel exercises or pelvic floor muscle training.

Unfortunately, the stigma surrounding loss of virginity often leads people to seek out unfounded claims and unscientific remedies. Beware of these false narratives and think before you share such information.