November is here! Halloween just finished, and before we know it, Christmas will be right around the corner. During the month of November, “Movember,” the annual event of growing moustaches, occurs to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men’s suicide. This month, let’s focus on providing tips to support men’s health and wellness.
Research by The University of British Columbia shows that men seek medical attention less often than women. Men are also more likely than women to suffer from the following health conditions:
- Cardiovascular disease, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke
- Cancer or lung disease
If you’re a male who doesn’t seek regular medical care, we recommend you go for an annual health assessment to determine any health screening requirements based on your age and risk factors. Here are also a few other suggestions for better wellness:
1. Eat your veggies (and fibre too).
Men need more fibre in their diets than women (38 grams per day). Most Canadians are only getting half that amount. Fibre helps control weight gain, prevent constipation, is good for your heart and can help fight prostate cancer.
TIP: Introduce more legumes, fruits and vegetables, and whole grains to your shopping list or menu. They’re great for men’s health! When eating at home or on the go, we recommend this guide for how often you can eat certain foods.
2. Rethink your drink.
Men have a greater tendency than women towards binge drinking, which results in both short- and long-term health effects. Short-term risks include being more likely to get into fights, having high risk sexual practices or dying by suicide. Long-term effects include multiple forms of cancer, heart disease, liver disease, mental health issues and other diseases.
TIP: Keep track of your drinking. Be aware of the alcohol percentage you are consuming and the size of the drinks you are ordering.
3. Get moving!
The average Canadian spends 69% of their waking hours sitting. We recommend you follow the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines. Get at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more with a combination of cardiovascular and strength training. Exercise and movement are surefire ways to burn off extra energy, enhance mental wellbeing, reinvigorate senses and improve flexibility, control and balance.
TIP: Consider adding walking meetings to your work regime.
TIP: When it comes to men’s health, any physical activity is good, but keeping it varied helps keep you interested and makes sure all your muscles are getting a workout. A new fitness class can be a great social opportunity and a lot of fun! Rowing, boxing gyms, and yoga studios often offer introductory rates so you can try different activities without breaking the bank. See if there is a studio, fitness club, or organized sports team close to your work or home.
4. Listen to your gut.
20 million Canadians suffer from digestive disorders every year, and many of them are undiagnosed disorders like celiac disease. Don’t be shy about talking to a medical professional. 80% of men don’t see a healthcare provider unless convinced by their spouse or partner to do so.
TIP: It might be embarrassing to talk about things like bowel movements or stomach pain. But if things don’t seem normal down there, you could be suffering from digestive issues or gastrointestinal illness. Both are easier to treat when detected early.
5. Practice safe sex.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are something no one likes to talk about, but are very common. Some STIs show no symptoms at all or present symptoms that can be mistaken for something else. The most common in men are human papillomavirus (HPV), genital herpes, chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis.
TIP: The best way to prevent STIs is to always practice safe sex using condoms during intercourse and dental dams during oral sex.
6. Pay attention down there.
Erectile dysfunction can be embarrassing to talk about, but it’s often an indicator of other medical problems. Male sexual arousal involves the brain, hormones, nerves, muscles and blood vessels, so erectile dysfunction can be related to any of these factors. The good news is that nearly all men who seek treatment from a medical professional will find some measure of relief.
TIP: Maintain a healthy lifestyle including exercise, avoiding smoking and alcohol and taking steps to reduce stress.
7. Get regular physicals for screening.
Your best bet is to be proactive and see what you can do today to ensure a healthier future. Book a Proactive Health Assessment at INLIV to provide clarity, convenience, peace of mind and comfort regarding your health and wellness.