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men's health week

Focus on men’s health: a guide to self-care

As we celebrate Father’s Day this month, we also want to share some tips for men’s health. Self-care and maintenance can do a world of good when it comes to preventing the top causes of death for men: heart disease, cancer, and accidents.

Low Carb Diets

There’s a reason why low carbohydrate diets are popular: it’s because they work well in encouraging weight loss, reducing blood sugar levels, and improving blood fat levels. Choosing a low carb lifestyle requires a shift in how men eat, which can be a challenge at first. It really isn’t all that difficult, though, because we have tons of low carbohydrate options at our fingertips. There are plenty of low carb foods available in your grocery store and online (ahem!), that can help you successfully make the switch to a low carb diet.

Exercise

We have heard it time and time again, that daily exercise is one of the most important things for men’s health. Not only does it improve the way your body looks and works, but exercise has also been shown to have a positive effect on one’s outlook on life. Whether you walk, lift weights, swim, or do yoga, simply getting your body into the habit of daily movement is a huge step in the direction of better health and longevity. Take the stairs, walk around the block, ride your bike to the post office, whatever it is just get into the habit of moving.

Friends

Research has shown that the people we spend time with socially have a big influence upon our success and outlook. In some cases, our friendships can hurt us if we fail to surround ourselves with positive, encouraging, and motivated friends.

Part of putting your health first also includes taking a good look at the sorts of things we do with friends. If it almost always involves pizza, TV, and beer, it is going to make it difficult to being your best. So why not tell your buddies that you are trying to lose a few pounds and ask if they want to join you for a bike ride, a trail hike, a game of basketball, a lifting session at the gym, or any other physical activity?

Sleep

How much sleep are you getting every night? For many years research has shown that American men consistently fail to get enough rest. Lack of sleep is a huge factor in overall health and mental performance. You cannot live a healthy life if you feel drowsy all the time. Relying upon caffeine and refined carbs for a boost is also a terrible way to try to counteract what your body is trying to tell you.

Do yourself a favor and for one week, challenge yourself to get at least 7.5 hours of sleep per night and see how much better you feel.

High Protein Diets

Since men typically have more muscle mass then women, they often need more calories per day. Of course, this all depends on height, weight, and level of physical activity, but as a general rule, a man’s dietary needs differ from a woman’s in some areas.

Increasing protein intake is an excellent way to promote healthy weight loss for men. However, it is a misnomer that men simply need to eat more meat to get their protein requirements. There are a lot of other excellent sources of protein like seafood, beans, eggs, and dairy. Put simply, if you have the choice between eating a big bowl of noodles and a nice piece of salmon, cheese omelet, or chicken breast, you should opt for the protein, not the carbs. If you find getting enough protein to be a challenge, as some men do, consider the benefits of protein supplements.

Regular health check-ups

Health screenings are essential if you want to live a longer, healthier life. Fortunately, many insurance companies and employers are providing incentives to get annual checkups. Why? Because they know that early detection and treatment is far more likely to improve one’s health than waiting until something is wrong. Just as with cars, we need to be inspected periodically to ensure that everything is running properly.

This idea of health should also carry over to the psychological side as well. How many men struggle through life with feelings of unresolved anger, depression, or a sense of inferiority? Nobody is without ‘baggage’. It would do the world some good if all of us, men and women, spent some time talking with a therapist, psychologist, or counsellor.

Conclusion

Men, practicing a healthy lifestyle is the new cool. Self-care and maintenance will improve your health faster than you realize. There are a lot of places to start when it comes to turning over a new leaf (quitting smoking, watching alcohol intake, are also high on the list).

 

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