Is Avoiding the Doctor Making You Sick? Lowering Health Risks for Men
Men, and especially men who view themselves as “tough guys,” are less likely than women to visit the doctor and tend to downplay their symptoms, according to several recent studies around gender and medicine. This tendency to avoid medical care may explain why men do not fare as well as women in health outcomes, outlined in a recent article published by Medline Plus.
June is designated as Men’s Health Month, and it’s a great time for men to schedule a routine check-up. This annual appointment with a doctor can help you detect and treat any issues early and ensure you stay fit and active longer.
Four Top Health Risks for Men
The leading causes of death among adult men in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are:
- Heart disease
- Chronic lower respiratory disease
Fortunately men can lower the risks of these health threats by making smart lifestyle choices.
Eat Your Vegetables – Your mother was right. Vegetables, as well as fruits, promote optimal health. Other foods that make up a healthy diet include whole grains, high-fiber foods, and lean proteins, such as fish. Limiting sodium is especially important in lowering your risk of stroke and heart disease.
Stay Active – Exercise not only helps control weight, it lowers your risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancer. Find an activity you enjoy. Anything from a game of basketball or soccer with friends to a walk every evening will reap benefits.
Stop Tobacco Use – If you use tobacco or smoke, your doctor can help you with a plan to quit. There are a range of patches, medicines, and other products that can help you make this important lifestyle change that will lower your risk of many health crises.
Weigh In – Monitor your weight. Keeping off excess pounds lowers your risk of heart disease and cancer. Ask your doctor to help you set weight-loss goals and a good target weight for your age and height.
Manage Stress – Constant stress increases your risks for serious health complications and lowers your immune system. Your physician can recommend ways to help lower stress or direct you to resources for help.
Limit Alcohol – Alcohol is loaded with calories, increases blood sugar levels, raises blood pressure, and can increase your risk for certain types of cancer. Your doctor can guide you on limits based on your age and other health considerations.
Team Up with A Doctor
Consider your primary care doctor as a teammate who can help you live longer and maintain your health. Don’t wait to schedule a visit until something is seriously wrong. The primary care providers at LeBauer HealthCare work with patients to create individual health plans. We offer six convenient locations, including Burlington, High Point, Oak Ridge, Whitsett, and Greensboro. Make an appointment today.