Thursday, April 14, 2005

Top ten tips for total health for men

1. Quit smoking - now
Did you know that roughly one out of five men keeps making the killing choice by continuing to smoke? If you smoke, or spend a lot of time around someone who does, sooner or later it can kill you. According to leading health specialists, cigerette smoke contains carbon monoxide as well as radioactive particles. The main way smoking may kill is by heart disease,lung disease or cancer - three of the top five killers in men.
But first, smoking will make your life miserable. You'll suffer the mood swings associated with nicotine addiction; you will break into embarrassing coughing and retching fits in front of family, friends and colleagues; food will loose its taste. Meanwhile, the smoke will damage your lungs and pollute your blood with carbon monoxide ultimately starting a reaction in your body that causes cancer cells to grow.
On the other hand, you can kick this bad habit. The incentive is that you will live longer, no matter how long you have been smoking.
2. Eat less fat
Fat clogs our arteries and causes heart attacks and strokes - it can even prevent us from getting erections. Yet men still gorge themselves on it. Doctors say that foods high in saturated fats are the worst offenders. That is because these foods also tend to be high in cholesterol and do some of their damage by building up as plague on the walls of our arteries. These buildups are what lead to heart disease, the top killer of men the world over. And as more blood vessels are narrowed by cholesterol and fat, the less oxygen will be circulated in our bodies and the more fatigued we'll feel.
To get the calories we need to sustain ourselves, we should stick to carbohydrates , which are better sources of fuel for our body than fats. A good low fat daily diet should include 6 to 11 servings of high-carbohydrate grains as well as 3 to 5 servings of vegetables and 2 to 4 servings of fruit. Keep fat to an absolute minimum.
3. Anchor yourself to a doc
Find yourself a well qualified doctor whom you trust and find comfortable to interact with, and then stick to him. A good doctor should encourage your spouse or your partner to join you in the examination room. He should explain his findings to you to help educate you about your health. He should believe in trying out the safest, least-expensive options first. More importantly, he should listen to you.
4. Get a good workout
For general physical wellbeing, nothing tops regular exercise. It helps you fend off heart disease, improves your sex life and enables you to live longer.
You don't have to pump iron to see the benefits of exercise, either. In fact, just 30 minutes of aerobic exercise at least 3 times a week can keep your heart and lungs healthy, prevent sprains, strains and day-to-day injuries, improve your circulation, increase your stamina and even help fend off colds and flus. Doctors recommend walking, swimming and cycling as especially good aerobic activities.
5. Know thyself
Like indicator lights on a dashboard, your body also has its own siginalling system to alert you to problems. They take the form of headaches, fever, vomiting or diarrhea. You don't have to be a doctor to know these symptoms - if they persist for more than a few days, it usually indicates a problem.
So listen to your body.Physically check yourself every month or so for unusual lumps, moles that have changed size or colour - anything that strikes you as unusual.
The second part of knowing your body requires some familiarity with the previous models it was based on - such as your parents and their parents. Doctors say that it is vital for men to have a family history of medical conditions - this the clearest roadmap you can get for problems you might face later.
6. Get out of the sun
Did you know that skin cancer is the most common cause of cancer and that sun exposure is the main cause of skin cancer ? Good as the sun may feel, unfortunately, it is also throwing off plenty of radiation. As a rule, doctors recomend staying out of the sun between 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM. Ofcourse people in the tropics are less prone to sun burns because they have a skin pigment (melenin) which gives them the brown or black colour to their skin, which helps protect them from sun's rays more than those living in the temperate climates.
7. Get away from it all
Our lives are getting more and more stressful as days go by. It could be our job or the family politics. Take time out of every day to remove yourself from your hectic life. A man needs his own territory where he has time to go and be himself. That private time gives men a chance to reflect on the day's events and recharge their mental batteries. That time is essential for their own identity - otherwise they lose their sense of self. For example, at a fixed time of the day, maybe after you are home from work, you could retreat to your den and spend time alone pursuing your favourate hobby, or just take a walk around the block. It requires discipline. But if you don't do it, life and work will control you.
8. Go to sleep
Food and rest are the two fuels that allow you to live. Guys almost never miss a meal. So why scrimp on sleep ?
Proper rest is a very commonsense thing to get. Sleep gives your mind and body a chance to perform day-to-day maintenance and repairs. But studies have shown that roughly half of all men sleep less than the eight hours a night most of us need. So make it a point to get sleep for atleast 8 to 9 hours at night. And to ensure proper rest, try to go to sleep and get up at the same time every day.
9. Laugh once a day - atleast
Doctors say that just the act of laughing can be beneficial from both an emotional and physiological perspective. Physically, respiration and circulation are enhanced through the act of laughter. We oxygenate the blood, which energises us and helps us think more clearly. Stress in a man's life is inevitable, but humour helps us tickle stress before it tackles us. You should'nt stifle your sense of humour; you should let it out.
10.Stay moist
One of the simplest ways to stay healthy is to drink plenty of water. Water regulates our temperature, protects our joints, keeps our sexual equipment functioning at peak condition and even helps ward off certain types of cancer. And we almost never drink enough of it. Water doesn't have much nutritional value - it has zero calories - but we wouldn't last long without it. Doctors suggest drinking atleast 8 - 10 eight ounce cups of water per day. And when you are sick, drink even more water. You'll replace the fluid you're losing and help your body cleanse itself of whatever it has caught.

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