June is Men’s health month and while the structure of a healthy lifestyle is the same regardless of gender, men face a few unique challenges when it comes to improving habits, physical performance, and overall wellbeing. Recent research reveals three primary areas of concern for most American men:
- Unhealthy habits like tobacco and alcohol use
- Risky behaviors
- Lack of preventive health care
A few simple changes can make a considerable improvement in male health and performance. Here’s how to get started.
Step 1: Change your mindset
Establishing a healthy mindset is the first step toward positive change. For men, health needs to be a priority. Many weight loss and mental wellbeing programs on the market today are geared toward women, who are the primary consumers of such programs. While a few programs cater to men, men need to overcome the mindset that any of these programs are for women.
Step 2: Identify and prioritize health challenges
Unhealthy Habits, such as tobacco use and alcohol abuse, are harmful, but knowing is half the battle. The best approach to improving health is twofold: add small healthy habits to your daily routine to eliminate unhealthy habits. If that’s overwhelming, start with the change that will most improve your health first.
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If you use tobacco, find a program that will help you quit. If you’re among the nearly 1/3 of men who have more than five alcoholic drinks in a single day, cut back or eliminate alcohol consumption to see a rapid improvement in your health.
Belly fat is also a challenge for men, and 60-80 percent of men are obese nationwide. Men tend to hold weight around the midsection, which can negatively affect health because belly fat deposits interfere with organ and hormone function.
Waist circumference is a better predictor of heart disease in men than weight or BMI. Aim for a waist measurement of fewer than 37 inches to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Step 3: Set yourself up for success with preventive care
Preventive health care and regular medical check-ups provide early diagnosis and intervention, so talk to your health care provider.
The American Heart Association listed ten reasons men don’t seek out adequate preventive care, and among these reasons include:
- Lack of medical insurance
- Lack of a relationship with a primary care provider
- Time constraints
- Misunderstanding of the importance of regular doctor visits and health screenings and more
Step 4: Add balanced habits gradually
A balanced approach to healthy habits builds good health. Challenge yourself to do a little more each day to develop a health-conscious mindset, such as incorporating movement, improving your nutrition, and focus on purposeful recovery.
Most importantly, do your best to get 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night to reduce your risk of heart disease and boost your energy and mood throughout the day.
Take your first step toward a healthier you by deciding what changes will make the most significant difference in your health. Then, you’ll be ready to find the support you need to set and meet goals and tackle them in more manageable steps every day.
If you’re wondering how to include healthy habits to include in your life, here are 22 Effort-Free Ways To Improve Your Health And Vitality
Your health is worth it!