Health Tips for Men's Health Month

June 9, 2021
On average, women live seven years longer than men and, according to Harvard Health, the reason for the gap is because men are less likely to visit a doctor on a regular basis, are more likely to engage in risky behavior, and/or are more likely to drink alcohol or use tobacco.

On average, women live seven years longer than men and, according to Harvard Health, the reason for the gap is because men are less likely to visit a doctor on a regular basis, are more likely to engage in risky behavior, and/or are more likely to drink alcohol or use tobacco.

 

The top causes of health issues for men arise from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, depression and strokes and many of these problems can be prevented through a healthy lifestyle and regular check-ups with a medical provider. This month for Men’s Health Month, let’s raise awareness of this gap and improve the health of ourselves and all the men in our lives. 

 

Preventive Measures to Take Today

Practicing a healthy lifestyle today can help prevent more serious health challenges later. Here are a couple tips to help you take control of your health:

  • Quit tobacco products. By now, most of us are aware of the negative side effects of tobacco products, like cigarettes, chewing tobacco and cigars but e-cigarette use, or vaping, is increasing in popularity, especially among young people. Against popular belief, vaping is not a useful method to help quit smoking because the product contains nicotine, the addictive substance in traditional cigarettes.

 

If you or someone you know smokes or uses other tobacco products, schedule an appointment with ACCESS today to start the road to being nicotine-free. For more information about quitting, call the Illinois Tobacco Quitline at 1.866.784.8937.

 

  • Get screened for cancer. 1 in 23 men will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and early detection is key. If you are 45 years or older, talk to your doctor about a colorectal cancer screening. 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and it is more likely to develop in older men and in non-Hispanic Black men. Early detection saves lives. Talk to your doctor at your annual exam.

 

  • Mental health is health. The pandemic has affected us all and if you are feeling depressed, anxious and need help managing those feelings, ACCESS has behavioral health services and programs to help you live the best life possible. Let’s remove the stigma around mental health. Encourage the men in your life to ask for help.

  • Limit your alcohol intake. High alcohol consumption is directly linked to various types of cancers, such as liver cancer. The risk increases with the quantity of alcohol you consume and the length of time you’ve been drinking regularly. However, if you do drink, the number of drinks that can adversely affect your health is critical. For men under the age of 65, drinking in moderation means up to two drinks a day. For men over the age of 65, this means one drink a day.

 

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Ensure that you eat a healthy balance of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, high fiber foods and lean sources of protein. Try to limit foods that have high levels of salt and saturated fat.

 

  • Maintain a healthy weight. By eating well and exercising frequently, you can lower your risk of heart disease as well as some types of cancer. Choosing healthy foods and physical activities that you enjoy will make maintaining a healthy weight seem less like a chore and more like a positive lifestyle change.

 

Don’t wait until something is serious to make an appointment to see the doctor. Schedule an appointment with an ACCESS provider today.