With a focus on Men’s health all month long, June 12-18 marks Men’s Health Week. Designed with the goal of heightening the awareness of preventable health issues and to encourage early detection and treatment of disease in men and boys, Men’s Health Week (and Month) include a number of activities across the nation. Anchored by a Congressional health education program, the activities are celebrated here in the US and around the globe with overwhelming response.
In addition to the health fairs, screenings, education and outreach activities planned across the nation, there are other ways that you can get involved in your community. The Wear Blue campaign is designed to show support for the men and boys in our lives. That’s right, this one is for everyone so ladies can get involved too! Celebrated on the Friday of Men’s Health Week, show your friend, dad, brother, boyfriend or boss that you care by wearing blue. Learn more about Wear Blue Day here.
So what are some of the things that men and boys can do to make their health a priority and improve health? Some suggestions in honor of Men’s Health Week from the Centers for Disease Control include:
- Get sleep. Between 7 and 9 hours specifically.
- If you smoke, stop. It’s never too late to quit and it is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and those around you. Check out smokefree.gov for resources and support.
- Eat healthy and include a variety of fruits, vegetables and lean protein in your diet each day.
- Aerobic activity is good for you heart and muscle strengthening exercises help us perform better and more efficiently burn calories. Having trouble getting enough sleep? Exercise helps that too!
- Pay attention to symptoms or things that feel “off”. Chest pain, shortness of breath, excessive thirst or problems with urination are signals to get checked out. Keep an eye on the basics… blood pressure, cholesterol and Body Mass Index (BMI) should stay in a healthy range. Be sure to ask your physician what tests you need and how often.
Health awareness can mean many things. From making healthy lifestyle choices to keeping your annual doctor visit, getting educated on disease and engaging in conversation about overall wellness, there is no shortage of topics that bring knowledge and awareness to those around us. Engaging in these conversations can be invaluable when life throws a health curveball that takes us by surprise. The more you learn, the more you can share with your family and your doctor, and when it comes to your health, those are the most important players.