Men aren’t living as long as women. Men are more vulnerable to many life-threatening diseases, including coronary heart disease, cancer, cerebrovascular disease, emphysema, cirrhosis of the liver, kidney disease. Men are also more likely to experience alcohol dependence, aggressive tendencies, and suicidal thoughts.
Many of these diagnoses are avoidable and there are steps you can take to be a healthier, happier version of yourself. Here are some of those steps.
One: Be Involved with Positive People
Make sure the people you surround yourself with are healthy — mentally and physically. If they are, spend time with them, catch up and talk about what is going on. If they aren’t, work together to build a healthier lifestyle. Being a part of an active community is the key to living a healthy and happy life.
It’s hard to open up, but that doesn’t mean we can just shut ourselves off. The “man up” mentality that suggests you should deal with problems yourself can create more problems in the long run. You want your friends to be able to rely on you and you should be able to rely on them. There won’t always be a solution at hand, but listening and talking can save your life.
Three: Pay Attention to your Age
We all get older and aren’t able to move around quite like we used to. As our bodies age, we have to start paying attention to different parts of it. By age 50, every man should have a prostate cancer test run by their doctor (45 if it runs in your family or you’re African American). Go to the doctor and talk about what you should be looking for. Missed diagnoses are fatal.
Four: Check Yourself
There are changes happening in your body, but if you don’t get familiar with yourself early on, you won’t know what is a concern. Perform regular body checks — and get personal with yourself. Medical professionals suggest checking your testicles once a month by yourself and once a year by a doctor to maintain your health.
Five: Be Active
Exercise has obvious physical benefits, but the mental benefits can also change your life. Adding more activity to your life will change your mentality and overall health. You don’t have to go to the gym every day. Get up from your desk and go for a walk around the office a few times a day, park further from the door, or take the stairs. Grab a friend and walk to lunch instead of ordering in or driving. There are small steps you can take to make big differences in your life.
These are just examples. There is an infinite number of small and large steps you can take in your journey to living a healthier and happier life. Any step toward positive change is an accomplishment.