National Men’s Health Month 2020 & Diabetes
Men’s Health Month was first established as National Men’s Health Week (later changed to a full month) by Congress in 1994. It was designed to be a week designated towards awareness of gender disparities in health and to increase awareness of preventable health issues for men. Why? Well, we can take a look at the numbers. Women tend to outlive men by 7 years and men die at higher rates from the top 10 causes of death. On balance, many illnesses such as lung disease, colon cancer, testicular cancer, prostate cancer, and so on can take the lives of men. Men’s health week was first established to encourage prevention and help more men go see a doctor sooner if they show symptoms.
COVID-19 & Men’s Health: Are Men More Likely to Have Preexisting Conditions?
Flash forward to 2020. Remarkably it seems the COVID-19 is actually hitting men harder than women. Studies show more men are dying than women and the possible reasons why range from biology to daily routines. For example, in New York City, the virus is killing men at twice the rate of women. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) 63 percent of deaths related to COVID-19 in Europe have been men. Possible reasons why include that because of the extra X chromosome, women tend to have a stronger immune system than men. Additionally, according to the CDC more men have more preexisting conditions like Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is of course non-preventable. It occurs when the body produces little to no insulin. According to the Center for Disease Control, it accounts for about 5% of cases. Type 2 diabetes is much more prevalent. It occurs when the muscle, liver, and fat cells don’t respond to insulin and become “insulin resistant.” As many as 90% of diabetes cases are Type 2. While of course, the most recent health crisis is COVID-19, it’s important to not forget about education, prevention, and treatment of diabetes. Whether it’s for yourself, your husband, your son, or another family member, it’s absolutely vital to manage the symptoms to enjoy a good quality of life. While there is no known cure for diabetes, there are several lifestyle factors that can play an important role in helping improve daily life.
Tips For Managing Diabetes
#1 - Limit processed foods. We recommend eating as many low G.I. foods as possible. We have a number of great recipe suggestions that are perfect for the coming summer months. Eating a balanced diet and including natural ways to help regulate blood sugar like cinnamon is a great place to focus.
#2 - Try incorporating mediation as part of your day. Studies show meditation can help regulate stress hormones (cortisol and adrenaline) and improve sleep quality which plays a role in appetite and hunger cravings.
#3 - Exercise. Even 30 minutes of walking can make a difference! Not only can exercise help reduce extra weight, but it can increase endorphins naturally which improves mood levels. Even if you’re working from home or in an office, we have some simple exercises you can try. We also recommend HIIT or High-Intensity Interval Training. This month is important both to educate on the symptoms of diabetes, but also remember that daily choices can significantly impact the health of yourself and your loved ones!
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