By Riva Preil
33.9% of men above age 20 in America are obese.
31.7% of men above age 20 in America have high blood pressure.
22.2% of men 18 and older in America smoke cigarettes on a regular basis.
12.5% of men 18 and older are in “fair” or “poor” health according to the National Health Interview Survey (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011).
Scary statistics? Absolutely. Immutable? Absolutely NOT.
Next week (June 10-16) is MEN’S HEALTH WEEK, and Beyond Basics Physical Therapy is joining the thousands nationwide celebrating this important week. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the three leading causes of death amongst males are ischemic heart disease, lung cancer, and stroke. Sometimes, men don’t follow up with their medical care providers when they don’t feel well because they are afraid they won’t appear “manly” if they complain about pain. It is important to remember that reporting symptoms does not detract from one’s masculinity! It is crucial to seek medical attention when something feels awry. Burying the problem or pretending it does not exist is a short term solution which does not address the underlying cause. It’s never too late to adopt healthier practices, including proper diet and exercise. Let this week be one for self-reflection and introspection to make sure your lifestyle habits are promoting your health. Schedule a physical with your primary care physician if you have not visited your doctor recently. Purchase a new pair of sneakers, join a gym, and go for a nice outdoor jog. Don’t allow yourself to wake up one day only to realize you have slipped into the 12.5%! Be proactive and take charge today towards a healthier future.