Men, listen up! From infancy to old age, women tend to be healthier than men. Part of it is biological but part of it is due to men’s more cavalier attitude towards health. According to webMD, men tend to avoid the doctor and are less likely to acknowledge any health challenges.
Since June is Men’s Health Awareness Month, here are a half dozen tips to maintain good health:
- Routine check–ups are important to monitor heart health. The top cause of death among adult men in the U.S. is cardiovascular disease. According to the American Health Association, an estimated 2.8 million men experience stroke each year and hypertension is common even in young men.1
- Don’t smoke. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke, air pollution and chemicals, as much as possible. According to the American Lung Association, more men are diagnosed with lung cancer each year, with smoking as the leading cause.
- Limit alcohol. Imbibe in moderation, which means up to two drinks a day for men 65 and younger and one drink for those older. One drink is 12 fluid ounces of beer, five fluid ounces of wine or 1.5 fluid ounces of 80-proof liquor.2 Men experience higher rates of alcohol-related deaths and hospitalizations than women, according to the Center for Disease Control. Alcohol abuse increases the risk for mouth, throat, esophagus, liver and colon cancers. It also interferes with testicular function and hormone production.3
- Eat a healthy diet. Choose vegetables, fruits, whole grains, high-fiber foods and lean sources of protein, such as fish and free-range chicken. Limit foods high in saturated and trans fat, sodium and sugar. The high sugar of diabetes acts like a slow poison on blood vessels and nerves, with heart attacks, strokes, blindness, kidney failure and amputations being the fallout for thousands of men.4
- Maintain a healthy weight. Overweight and obesity feed the diabetes epidemic and increase the risk of heart disease and various types of cancer.
- Use sunscreen. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, men aged 50 and older are at the highest risk for developing skin cancer, more than twice as likely as women.5 This higher risk is attributed to more frequent sun exposure and fewer visits to the doctor.
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