We don’t often talk about men’s health. Your wife has probably been going in for routine well visits each year since she was 20 years old. When is the last time you went in for a well visit? It is important that men – in particular, when we are approaching our 40s – don’t skip routine care.
Routine Checks: All men 20 and older should get their cholesterol checked every five years. Talk to your doctor about diabetes screening starting at age 45 or younger if you’re overweight and physically inactive, or have a family member with diabetes. Another gem to look forward to is your colonoscopy which is recommended to start at age 50.
Preventative Care: Keeping your blood pressure low and spare tire flat are also critical as you approach your 40s. Many men tend to gain weight around their middle as they hit midlife. Studies have found that spare tires trump even general obesity as a predictor of heart disease and diabetes. Also be on the lookout for ways to reduce stress. We also tend to take on greater stress with pressure from careers, financial obligations, and family. Stress is a known risk factor for heart disease which hits men at a younger age than it does women. Heart disease is the number 1 killer of men age 45 to 54. This is why it is critical to find ways to decrease stress – regular exercise, yoga, and meditation are all good options. And yes, tell your significant other, that regular sexual activity can also greatly reduce stress. Doctor’s orders.
Happy Father’s Day!