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Jul 17

6 things to reject!

No. 1 — Heart disease

According to the American Heart Association, in 2004, over 410,000 men died of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in both sexes. Because men usually develop heart disease 10 to 15 years earlier than women do, they’re more likely to die of it in the prime of life. About one-fourth of all heart-disease-related deaths occur in men ages 35 to 65.

You can reduce your risk of heart disease by making healthier lifestyle choices and getting appropriate treatment for other conditions that can increase your risk of coronary artery disease, such as high cholesterol, diabetes and high blood pressure. Some preventive measures you can take include:

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      • Don’t smoke or use other tobacco products.
      • Eat a varied diet rich in fruits and vegetables, and avoid high-fat foods.
      • Maintain a healthy weight.
      • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
      • Have your cholesterol tested.
      • If you have diabetes, keep your blood sugar under control.
      • Get regular blood pressure checks.

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No. 2 — Cancer

Cancer is the second-leading cause of death for both sexes. Lung cancer — 90 percent of it caused by cigarette smoking — is the most common cause of cancer death in both sexes. In 2003, 89,964 men died of lung cancer. Prostate cancer and colorectal cancer are the second- and third-leading causes of cancer death in men.

Some preventive measures you can take:

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      • Don’t smoke or use other tobacco products.
      • Eat a varied diet rich in fruits and vegetables, and avoid high-fat foods.
      • Maintain a healthy weight.
      • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
      • Limit your exposure to sun and use sunscreen.
      • Drink alcohol only in moderation, if at all.
      • Be aware of potential cancer-causing substances (carcinogens) in your home and workplace, and take steps to reduce your exposure to these substances.
      • Have regular preventive health screenings.
      • Know your family medical history and review it with your doctor.

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No. 3 — Unintentional injuries

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of accidental deaths. More than twice as many men as women died in traffic accidents. Male drivers involved in such accidents were almost twice as likely as female drivers to be intoxicated. To reduce your chances of a fatal crash:

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      • Use your seat belt every time you drive.
      • Don’t exceed speed limits.
      • Don’t drive after drinking alcohol.
      • Don’t drive while sleepy or under the influence of drugs.

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Poisoning is the second-leading cause of fatal unintentional injury to men in 2003 — 13,176 men died of it. In comparison, 6,281 women died of poisoning that year. To reduce your risk of poisoning:

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      • Don’t put on generator sets in the house.
      • Store household products in their original containers eg don’t put kerosene in mineral bottles.
      • Read and follow label instructions for household products.
      • Turn on a light when giving or taking medicine and follow label instructions.
      • Ventilate areas in which you use chemical products.

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Falls and drowning were the third- and fourth-leading causes of fatal unintentional injury to men. In 2003, falls caused 8,910 deaths among men, compared with 8,319 deaths among women. Drowning accounted for 2,632 deaths among men and 674 deaths among women.

Common-sense precautions such as using a safety ladder, placing nonskid mats in showers and tubs, and never swimming alone in a large or unfamiliar body of water can reduce the risks.

Workplace accidents — which include some vehicle crashes, poisonings, falls and drowning — are a significant cause of fatal injury to men, partly because men are concentrated in dangerous occupations such as agriculture, mining and construction.

No. 4 — Stroke

In 2004, over 58,000 men died of stroke, according to the American Heart Association. Although stroke affects equal proportions of men and women, men have better chances of surviving than women do. You can’t control some stroke risk factors, such as family history, age and race, but you can control the leading cause — high blood pressure — as well as contributing factors such as smoking and diabetes.

 

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Additional preventive measures:

  • Lower your intake of cholesterol and saturated fat. Get your cholesterol checked.
  • Get regular blood pressure checks, and if it’s higher than normal, take measures to control it.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Control diabetes.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
  • Manage stress.
  • Limit alcohol consumption.
  • Talk with your doctor about taking a daily dose of aspirin.

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No. 5 — Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

In 2003, according to the American Lung Association, 60,714 men died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a group of chronic lung conditions that includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis. It’s strongly associated with lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer deaths among men. The main cause is smoking. Men who smoke are 12 times as likely to die of COPD as are men who’ve never smoked.

 

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Some preventive measures you can take:

  • Don’t smoke.
  • Avoid secondhand smoke.
  • Minimize exposure to workplace chemicals.

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No. 6 — Diabetes Mellitus

The American Heart Association reports that in 2004, 35,000 men died of diabetes, a disease that affects the way the body uses blood sugar (glucose). Excess body fat, especially around the middle, is an important risk factor for diabetes. About 80 percent of people who have the disease are overweight or obese.

The diabetes complications most likely to be fatal are heart disease and stroke, which occur at two to four times the average rate in people with diabetes. Men with diabetes haven’t benefited as much from recent advances in heart disease treatment as have men without diabetes.

An estimated one-third of men with the most common form of diabetes don’t know they have it. Many are unaware of the disease until they develop complications such as impotence (erectile dysfunction), nerve damage causing pain or loss of sensation in the hands or feet, vision loss, or kidney disease.

 

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Some preventive measures you can take:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Eat a varied diet, rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat foods.
  • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
  • Get your fasting blood sugar level checked periodically.
  • Know your family’s diabetes history and discuss it with your doctor.

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