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Men’s Health

On average men live shorter lives than women – in part because men don’t give as much attention to their health, including getting physical check ups and screenings on a regular basis.

Men are at risk for premature death at younger ages compared to women.  That’s because men have earlier and more severe coronary artery disease and they have some different types of cancers, says Dr. Seigfreid Yu, assistant professor of internal medicine at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield.  He explains some reasons why men put off seeing a doctor.

SOUND BITE:    “ . . . men tend not to think about their health as much as women do.  And they are less likely to seek care as well as have a place to go when they do need care.  Some of the factors that may weigh into this include things like insurance coverage and other factors.  But there is clearly some behavioral component that seems to affect men being less willing to take care of their health than women.”

Dr. Yu says men need to get the appropriate screenings and follow various health guidelines to take good care of themselves.  They should know their readings for blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol.  He advises men to stop smoking, get adequate exercise and manage their weight.

SOUND BITE:  “. . . the most important first step for men to take would be to just start taking a personal interest in their health in general. And of course being physically active and making healthy food choices is going to be very important.”

Dr. Yu stresses the importance for men to stop smoking, limit alcohol use and see their primary care physicians for regular check ups and screenings so they can correctly manage any risk factors they may have.

This is Ruth Slottag at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield.