The truth is, men are often known to be more indifferent towards their health when compared to the efforts of women, who proactively and publicly address their health issues in a way not traditionally seen with men. As a result, today the levels of awareness, understanding and funding for men’s health issues, like prostate cancer, lag significantly behind other causes.
Movember aims to change the face of men’s health and reverse this way of thinking by putting a fun twist on this serious issue. Using the moustache as a catalyst, we want to bring about change and give men the opportunity and confidence to talk about their health more openly.
Movember's primary objective is to raise awareness and funds for men's health issues, specifically prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. We want everyone to know that most cancers are highly curable if caught in the early stages, therefore Movember aims to increase early detection, diagnosis and effective treatment. This will ultimately reduce the number of deaths from cancer.
- The average life expectancy for men is five years fewer than women (presently 77 years old compared to 82).
- 1 in 2 men, and 1 in 3 women, will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.
- Evidence suggests that about a third of the 571,950 cancer deaths expected to occur this year will be related to obesity, physical inactivity and poor nutrition, and thus could be prevented.
- 1 in 6 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.
- In 2012, 242,000 new cases of the disease will be diagnosed and more than 28,000 men will die of prostate cancer.
- Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in American males between the ages of 15 and 35.
- 8,590 men will be diagnosed with the disease in 2012 and 360 will die.
- 6 million people die every year from tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke. One person dies every six seconds.
- 1 in every 13 men will develop lung cancer.
- While not as common, men can get breast cancer. About 2,140 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed among men and about 450 men will die from the disease in 2012.
- More than 3.5 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year in the US.
- In 2012, an estimated 13 million or 11.8% of all adult men over the age of 20 in the US have diabetes.
- Approximately 76.4 million men and women in the US have high blood pressure- 1 in 5 do not know it.
- About 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure, and blood pressure tends to rise with age.
- Researchers estimate that at least 6 million men in the United States suffer from a depressive disorder every year.
- Four times as many men commit suicide compared with women.
- 24% of men are less likely to go to the doctor compared to women.
The reasons for the poor state of men’s health in the US and around the world are numerous and complex, primarily due to a lack of awareness of the health issues men face. This can largely be attributed to the reluctance of men to openly discussing the subject due to longstanding traditions, coupled with an ‘it’ll be alright’ attitude. Men are less likely to schedule doctor appointments when they feel ill or for an annual physical, thereby denying themselves the chance of early detection and effective treatment of common diseases.
Studies show that many men don’t get regular health checks for the following reasons:
- Fear it will lead to a hospital visit
- Embarrassed to discuss their health issues
- Find it too hard to see a doctor because they just can’t fit it into their schedule
- Just can’t be bothered making an appointment
Statistics show that, on average, men die at a younger age than women – the average life expectancy for men is five years fewer than women (presently 77 compared to 82). That said, despite trailing the women’s health movement, things are beginning to change, but much more progress needs to be made to close the gap between the state of men's and women’s health. Established taboos and barriers relating to men’s health are gradually being broken down.
It’s not all bad news! Maintaining healthy lifestyle choices, a good diet and getting regular medical check-ups and screening tests can dramatically influence your health. Regardless of age, keep your health in check by doing the following:
|HAVE AN ANNUAL PHYSICAL
Find a doctor and make a yearly appointment each Movember for a general health check. Getting annual checkups, preventative screening tests and immunizations are among the most important things you can do to stay healthy.
KNOW YOUR FAMILY HEALTH HISTORY
Family history is one of the most powerful tools to understanding your health. Family history affects your level of risk for cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke, among other illnesses. It all starts with a conversation; talk to your family and take note of illnesses that a direct relative has experienced. Be sure to learn about relatives that are deceased as well.
If you do smoke, stop! Compared to non-smokers, men who smoke are about 23 times more likely to develop lung cancer. Smoking causes about 90% of lung cancer deaths and doubles your risk of heart disease.
BE PHYSICALLY ACTIVE
If you are not already doing some form of exercise, start small and work up to a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week. Stay on the move throughout the day; long periods of sitting increases your risk for disease. Every little bit counts – take the stairs instead of the elevator or take a walk during your lunch break.
KEEP IT REGULAR
As best you can, try to keep a schedule and eat, sleep and exercise at the same time each day.
The quality of your sleep can dictate how much you eat, how fast your metabolism runs, how fat or thin you are, how well you can fight off infections and how well you can cope with stress. Keep a regular pattern of sleep, going to bed and waking up at roughly the same time is key.
|KNOW YOUR BODY
You should record every sign and symptom you experience and discuss this with your doctor.
EAT A HEALTHY DIET
Fill up with fruits, vegetables, whole grains and choose healthy proteins like lean meats, poultry, fish, beans and nuts. Eat foods low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt and added sugars. Moderation is key, as is eating a wide range of foods to ensure you get a variety of nutrients. The best source of vitamins is from food.
STAY AT A HEALTHY WEIGHT
Balance calories from foods and beverages with calories you burn off by physical activities. Only 33% of adults are at a healthy weight for their height. Obesity and being overweight pose a major risk for chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke and certain cancers.
MANAGE YOUR STRESS
Stress, particularly long-term stress, can be the factor in the onset or worsening of ill health. Managing your stress is essential to your health and well-being. Take ‘time out’ each day and go for a walk or do something you find relaxing.
DRINK ALCOHOL ONLY IN MODERATION
Alcohol can be part of a healthy balanced diet, but only if consumed in moderation. This means no more than two drinks a day for men, and one drink a day for women (a standard drink is one 12-ounce bottle of beer or wine cooler, one 5-ounce glass of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits).
For Movember’s source log, please email: email@example.com
Download the men's health poster here,
or visit the Merchandise section to order
a free men's health pack.