Men’s Health Week runs through Father’s Day (June 19: don’t forget!). The annual campaign aims to raise awareness of how all men can prevent illness and treat existing health conditions.
The focus is to get men to adopt healthy living habits that include:
- Being physically active
- Eating Well
- Not smoking
- Practicing good safety
- Getting enough sleep
- Paying attention to signs and symptoms of diseases
The organizers of Men’s Health Week programs across the nation offer a range of resources to help men make this week the start of a lifelong commitment to healthier living. Efforts in your area may include information sessions, advertisements that encourage men to get regular physicals, or organized events like “Meatless Mondays,” a movement that focuses on ways to prevent heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer.
In addition to these fairly traditional get-healthy solutions, there are some unorthodox — and surprisingly convenient — strategies that men looking to boost their overall wellness can try out:
1) Take in some art
A study published last month in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health shows that men who attend receptive cultural events such as art galleries or concerts showed better health outcomes than others. The benefits seem to include lower levels of stress and depression.
2) Grab a cup of joe
Another recent study, this one published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, found that coffee may reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer. According to the researchers, both regular and decaffeinated coffee appear to have the same beneficial effects.
3) Get a free checkup while you shop
Retail-based clinics continue to pop up throughout the country and many men may already rely on them for basic health care like getting blood pressure checked or minor illnesses treated. But this week (and this week only), Sam’s Club locations will take convenient health care to a new level, offering free screening tests that can help detect conditions such as prostate cancer.
Recent figures released from the 2010 census show that men make up a significantly larger percent of the senior population than in previous decades. That data may indicate that more men are trying to take better care of themselves and that we may see men’s life expectancy jump in the coming years, but it also means that men who may now expect to live longer will also need to manage their long-term health better than previous generations. Either way, the message and opportunities available during this year’s Men’s Health Week come just in time to make a difference.
Quiz for Men: Are You Prematurely Aging?