National Men’s Health Week is observed each year leading up to Father’s Day. This week is a reminder for men to take steps to be healthier, but they don’t have to do it alone! Whether it’s your husband, partner, dad, brother, son, or friend you can help support the health and safety of the men in your life.
Create Healthy Habits
Eat Healthy. Start by taking small steps like saying no to super-sizing and yes to a healthy breakfast. Eat many different types of foods to get all the vitamins and minerals you need. Add at least one fruit and vegetable to every meal.
Get Moving. Play with your kids or grandkids. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Do yard work. Play a sport. Keep comfortable walking shoes handy at work and in the car. Most importantly, choose activities that you enjoy to stay motivated.
Make Prevention a Priority. Many health conditions can be prevented or detected early with regular checkups from your healthcare provider. Regular screenings may include blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose, prostate health and more
Men, You Need Your Checkups
Encourage him to get a physical. Most of the factors that contribute to men’s shorter, less healthy lives are preventable. And that prevention starts with seeing a healthcare provider on a regular basis. Adult men in the United States visit primary care providers at lower rates than adult women. Establishing baselines for factors such as blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, and PSA (a screening test for prostate cancer risk)—and monitoring how they change over time—will enable the provider to catch potentially dangerous conditions early, when they’re still treatable.
- Encourage him to get physical. The benefits of physical activity on health outcomes are extensive, and many people find it difficult to get motivated for physical activity on their own. Rather than simply telling your dad to exercise and then hoping that he will, do it with him. Join a recreation league at your local community center, sign up for group personal training sessions to get fit together, or simply make a routine out of regular walks. Simple, yes, but not always easy.
- Let him know you care. One reason men disregard their own health is that they’re too busy taking care of everyone else. What they don’t realize, however, is that if they die early, they’ll be hurting the very people they’ve worked so hard to protect. So remind him that you and your other family members love him and need him to be alive and healthy for as long as possible.