- Change oil and filter: Check.
- Look at fluids, tire pressure belts and hoses: Check.
- Lubricate chassis: Check.
Attention guys! For many of you, conducting this simple three-point test on your cars every 3,000 miles/90 days is a no brainer. After all, you know your car is a machine that requires regular preventive maintenance to ensure it will run safely and smoothly for a long time.
Our bodies are machines too! And as such, they also require regular screenings and maintenance so you can thrive and live a long and healthy life.
Truth in Numbers
Unfortunately, many men don’t give their health the attention they should. According to the current figures from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the United States:
- 1 in 8 (12.5%) males age 18 and over are in fair or poor health.
- 1 in 3 (33.9%) males age 20 and over are obese, placing them at increased risk to develop heart disease, the leading cause of death, as well as other serious illnesses.
- Nearly a third (31.7%) of males age 20 and over suffer from hypertension, placing them at risk to develop stroke, heart disease and kidney disease. However, since hypertension may not have symptoms, many individuals don’t know they have it.
- Nearly 1 in 5 (18.9%) of males age 65 and over lack health insurance coverage.
Are You Getting the Health Screenings You Need?
Is your body overdue for a tune-up? The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends the following screening tests for men (these are only broad guidelines; speak with your doctor about your individual needs):
Colorectal Cancer. Regular screenings for colorectal cancer should begin at age 50 (or earlier depending on your individual risk factors). Screening tests can find precancerous polyps which can be removed before they turn into cancer, or early stages of cancer.
Diabetes. Get screened for diabetes if your blood pressure is higher than 135/80 or if you take medications for high blood pressure.
High blood pressure. Starting at age 18, have your blood pressure checked at least every 2 years. High blood pressure is 140/90 or higher.
High cholesterol. If you’re 35 or older have your cholesterol checked. If you’re 20-34 have your cholesterol checked if you use tobacco, are obese, have diabetes or high blood pressure, have a personal history of heart disease or blocked arteries, or have a family history of heart disease.
Depression. Talk to your doctor or nurse about being screened for depression especially if during the last two weeks you’ve felt down sad or hopeless; or you’ve felt little interest or pleasure in doing things.
For More Information
For more information on recommended health screenings for men at any age, visit: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/healthcheckup.html.