ORLANDO, March 26, 2013 (LifeSiteNews) – A new University of Central Florida study has found that people in committed relationships who view pornographic materials are more likely to cheat on their partners than those who don’t.

The study, released March 12 in the journal of Social, Psychological and Personality Science, referred to cheating as “extradyadic behavior” and sought to determine whether porn consumption led to it. 

“Initial pornography consumption,” wrote the authors, “predicted intimate extradyadic behavior 12 weeks later, even after controlling for initial extradyadic behavior, sociosexuality, relationship length, baseline relationship satisfaction, social desirability, and participant gender and race. … These results suggest that sexually explicit material can provoke intimate extradyadic behavior via its effect on perceptions of alternative partners.”

Study co-author A. Marlea Gwinn put it in layman’s terms for Men’s Health, explaining that porn offers users the illusion of no-strings-attached sexual gratification with multiple highly attractive partners. Those erotic images, Gwinn added, program the users’ brains to assume that there are plenty of attractive and willing sexual partners available outside their current relationships.

In addition to “extradyadic behavior” (otherwise known as cheating), pornography use has been linked to an increase in sex crimes, especially among the young.  Another recent study found that pornography leads to short-term memory loss in men. Porn use is also associated with increased levels of depression and anxiety.

Despite the studies showing the damaging effects, the Internet has made porn use more common than ever.  In the United States alone, it is estimated that 77 percent of Americans view sexually explicit material at least once every month.