As a man, you might consider health improvement as something of a challenge. The truth is that health prevention may not be as daunting an idea as it first seems because the list of health threats is short. Although there are innumerable diseases, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified only a few serious ones affecting men in the United States: heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke (which is a cerebrovascular disease), Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, influenza and pneumonia, nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis.
Since it’s a small list, you can prevent many of these diseases by taking simple measures and avoiding these mistakes.
Mistake #1: Not Having Regular Checkups
Regular check-ups help you identify risk factors. Depending on your age and family medical history, a routine check will include a vision test, a hearing test, a urine test, and a blood test. Your doctor will evaluate your cholesterol level, blood pressure, and weight to get a more complete picture of your health.
Besides visiting a doctor, you can also use a genetic testing kit to do your own screening. The importance of early detection of prostate cancer can benefit high-risk individuals. A simple test like Prompt PGS uses a cheek-swab sample to evaluate your genetic predisposition for cancer, encouraging you to be actively involved in the development of your personalized prostate cancer screening approach at an early stage. Prompt PGS compares your specific genetic profile to tens of thousands of others and can help you and your physician determine what is best for you.
Mistake #2: Not Sleeping Enough
If you’re not getting enough sleep, you might risk your health by going to bed late and getting up early. Although this will give you a few extra hours in the day, you’re putting your health at risk because sleep clears out metabolic waste products. If you are sleep deprived for a long period, perhaps because you’re trying to build your own business, get ahead in your career, or have all-night shift work, then tau proteins and beta-amyloid will accumulate in your brain, putting you at risk for neurodegenerative disease.
Besides improving the quantity of your sleep by going to bed earlier, also consider ways to improve the quality of your sleep. When you get enough quality sleep, your brain flushes out waste byproducts in waves during the deeper sleep phase because your brain frequency is at its slowest.
How to Improve the Quality of Your Sleep:
- You can improve the quality of your sleep by not watching television, using your cell phone, or working on your computer an hour before sleep.
- You can improve the quality of your sleep by doing some stretching exercises to relax your taut muscles, and by avoiding drinking caffeine products six hours before you hit the bed.
- You can improve the quality of your sleep by having a fixed bedtime and waking time.
If these calming measures are insufficient, try a hot bath, meditating, reading, contemplating, or listening to peaceful music.
Mistake #3: Not Seeking Psychological Help in a Crisis
We are more prone to getting sick when we experience chronic stress. Often this stressor is not an external event, but a psychological issue like depression, anxiety, or some other mood disorder. Unfortunately, many men don’t seek psychological help when they are experiencing acute distress. For instance, you might experience this level of distress after a relationship breakup, a job loss, or the death of a loved one. Rather than thinking of seeking psychological help as a sign of weakness, reframe it to see it as a significant way to empower yourself. Getting regular checkups, improving the quality and quantity of your sleep, and getting psychological help when you’re experiencing chronic or acute distress is a good start to living a longer and healthier life.