It's no secret that we need calories to fuel our body's basic energy needs. Yet many of us find it difficult to take in the right amount—and the right kind—of fuel. No matter how many guidelines we're given, we still crave what we know is bad for us.
Quite simply, cognition refers to thinking. There are the obvious applications of conscious reasoning—doing taxes, playing chess, deconstructing Macbeth—but thought takes many subtler forms, such as interpreting sensory input, guiding physical actions, and empathizing with others.
At least for humans, this most basic of acts is anything but basic. As the pioneering sex researcher Alfred Kinsey put it, the only universal in human sexuality is variability itself. Within the universe of intimacy and pleasure that sex affords, however, there's a lot of room for error.