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Why we’re putting men’s health in the spotlight

Why we’re putting men’s health in the spotlight

Men’s health should be at the top of your “honey do” list. While many people put off their annual checkup every now and then, many men will do almost anything to avoid healthcare. In fact, a recent study found that 72% of men would rather do chores around the house than visit a medical provider. During the month of June, for National Men’s Health Month, we are raising awareness about men’s physical and mental health.

The facts about men’s health

While you may feel healthy and well, signs of a health issue could be detected during a checkup or regular screening. Many U.S. men have risk factors for common and serious health conditions, including heart disease and cancer.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death among both men and women in the U.S. It causes nearly a quarter of all deaths among men each year. Conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes can increase the risk of heart disease.

Regular checkups with a West Jefferson Medical Center primary care provider can help you identify your risk and learn how to improve your health.

A user’s guide to taking care of your health

Have you ever heard the saying, “The best defense is a good offense”? When it comes to men’s health, that “good offense” is taking proactive steps to prevent disease.

Your preventive strategy is a simple one:

  • Make time for exercise. Experts recommend that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity (such as brisk walking or jogging) or 75 minutes of strenuous physical activity (such as running or tennis) each week. Have a hard time working exercise into your schedule? Put it on your calendar as an appointment several times a week—and don’t cancel on yourself!
  • Fuel your body in a healthy way. Fill your plate mainly with fruits and vegetables, which are packed with antioxidants and nutrients. Incorporate foods with lean protein, such as turkey, fish or lentils, whole grains and a small amount of the healthy fats found in avocado, nuts and olives. Limit your intake of saturated fat, added sugar and sodium.
  • Make sleep a priority. Getting between seven and nine hours of quality sleep each night can help you stay in optimal health. Your body needs the time to recharge and recoup, physically, mentally and cognitively. Set a bedtime and wake time and keep them consistent to train your body to get the sleep it needs.
  • Say no to tobacco. Smoking is the single most preventable cause of death, so if you smoke, it is vital for your health to quit. Other tobacco products are also a hazard to your health and can increase your risk of oral cancer and other medical issues.
  • Find ways to manage your stress. A small amount of stress is normal, but if you find yourself feeling stressed all the time, it’s time to make changes. Instead of turning to coping mechanisms such as cigarettes or fast food, find healthier ways to manage stress, such as meditation, exercise or time with friends.

These steps aren’t the only things you can do to protect your health, but they’re a great move in the right direction. Here’s to your health!

Has it been a while since you had a checkup? Schedule an appointment today with a West Jefferson Medical Center primary care provider.