by Jayashree Mani. MS, CCN
Okay. It is true. Men take much less care of their health than women. Ever wondered why? Maybe it’s too much of a hassle to think about – especially when things seem to be going well. Or perhaps there’s no time for it – because obviously there are more “important” things to worry about. Perhaps the fear of the unknown? “Maybe the doctor will find something I don’t want to know about,” or maybe the idea of the examination itself causes anxiety. Whatever the reason, men just don’t seem to take their health seriously.
Yes, according to a large national survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 17% of men said they didn’t have a “usual place to go for medical care,” compared to just 10% of women. In fact, men are 24% less likely to visit the doctor for regular check-ups than women.
Something’s got to give.
The good news is that it’s not too late to make a few changes in your routine! Include some new simple practices today and prepare for a healthier tomorrow.
Here we bring to you the big 5 issues affecting men’s health and what to do about them.
1) The heart
Heart disease is the #1 cause of death for men. Some of the top contributing factors are diabetes, obesity, lack of nutritious food and exercise, alcohol use and smoking. All of these are totally preventable. In addition to the obvious ones like avoiding alcohol and smoking, some of the key and very doable steps that can help include:
- Cutting sugar out from the diet.
- Choosing more alkalinizing foods that automatically provide more heart friendly
- Making a resolution to move and get active on a regular basis.
Prevention is key because very often symptoms of heart disease are not noticeable until it’s too late. Annual doctor visits are of paramount importance for regular updates on your health status, especially with regards to heart-related measures such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
High blood pressure is said to affect nearly 50% of men and is a major risk factor for both heart disease and stroke. Dr. Bonhomme from the Men’s Health Network says – “If you don’t get your cholesterol checked when it’s going high when you’re 20, and if you don’t get your blood pressure checked when it’s going high when you’re 30, maybe your blood sugar’s getting a little high when you’re 40, what do you think is going to happen when you’re 50?”
2) The brain
While they won’t admit it, men are affected by depression. More than 6 million men show signs of depression, and they are 4 times more prone to suicide than women. Many men think showing signs of depression is a sign of weakness. While they exhibit symptoms differently from women (e.g., anger rather than sadness, aggression and despair instead of tears), the effects of the condition are equally grim.
Chronic stress and disturbed sleep play a big role in precipitating depression. Thankfully, this can be easily rectified.
Eating and hydrating the right way is the first step. Then getting restorative sleep and finding a few “go-to” relaxation techniques like using dichromatic green light therapy, salt/soda baths, or meditation can decrease the effects of stress and prevent setting the stage for depression.
3) The prostate
Prostate health is crucial for every man. Without realizing it, many endure the effects of an enlarging prostate (e.g.,frequent trips to the bathroom and/or incomplete bladder emptying), also called Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). By age 60, half the male population will have an enlarged prostate, and after age 85 that number increases to 90%. Out of every 100 American men, approximately 13 will get prostate cancer during their lifetime.
The American Cancer Society recommends that men have their first prostate exam by age 50 and those with a family history, at age 45. Certain racial differences also play a role in how soon prostate cancer might develop. No time you say? It only takes a few minutes for a prostate exam, and it is prudent to start early and build it into your annual check-up.
When discussing prostate health, we have to mention PERQUE Prostate Vitality Guard™. With a blend of prostate friendly herbs like saw palmetto, stinging nettle (urtica dioca) and pygeum africanum, and nutrients like zinc, selenium and lycopene, this is a dynamite product. It lowers harmful testosterone safely while increasing healthy male hormones naturally, supports healthier bladder function, and more.
4) The lung
Of all controllable factors, smoking undoubtedly has the most deleterious effect on the lungs. Lung cancer is the top cause of cancer death — more in men than in women. Starting with an innocent smoker’s cough, things can escalate quickly to serious issues like COPD, emphysema, and cancer. It is encouraging that the campaign against smoking has been fairly widespread for a while, and that has helped considerably in decreasing the percentage of smokers from 21% in 2005 to 11.5% in 2021. Sadly, there are still more than 16 million Americans who live with a smoking-related disease.
These straightforward steps can help keep those lungs happy and healthy:
- Exercise regularly. Hiking in the mountains or walking outdoors away from the polluted air of the city can be doubly beneficial.
- Practice abdominal breathing exercises that allow maximum use of lung capacity.
- Maintain cleaner air inside the house. We recommend regular vent cleaning and using an air filter with HEPA or PECO
- If you or someone around you smokes, add a lung check-up to your annual physical.
5) The liver
According to CDC, men are more likely to die from chronic liver disease and cirrhosis than women. The liver is described as the “metabolic workhorse of the body”. Anything and everything you ingest — food, medicine, alcohol, or tobacco — gets filtered by the liver.
While the liver is quite efficient in maintaining homeostasis regardless of what comes its way, if an overwhelming number of toxins are relentlessly inundating the organ, issues start developing and effects are seen all over the body.
Here are a few simple recommendations we think can help not only protect the liver, but also help the body to function more efficiently:
- Know what you’re eating and drinking. In addition to consuming an alkalinizing diet and staying hydrated, getting LRA testing can identify any potential immune triggers.
- Consider a regular detoxification We are all perpetually bombarded with chemicals and pollutants whether through the air, water, or the food we eat, while living in the 21st century.
Take care of your body and it will take care of you!
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