The most common health problems men face (and how to fix them)

When facing the work week, dealing with the wife and kids, and managing daily tasks, the stress of life adds up. And it shows its effects most prominently in men’s physical and mental health.

Some of the most common health problems men face are manageable if tended to in a timely and consistent manner. It may cost now, but will be worth the sacrifice for more energy throughout the day.

Exhaustion

Men are just as prone to disrupted sleep and drowsiness as women, research suggests. Symptoms include daytime sleepiness, a lack of concentration, and an increased appetite or lack of motivation to exercise, according to Marianne Legato, M.D., director of the Partnership for Gender-Specific Medicine at Columbia University in New York City.

Avoiding alcohol before going to bed can improve the quality of your sleep. Legato says that deep sleep is restorative and can help improve memory and clear thinking throughout the day.

Lack of Exercise

Another common health problem men face is a lack of physical activity. An increased waistline may be a clear sign that it’s time to get the elliptical out.

One solution is to find a consistent time in your daily schedule to exercise. It takes as little as 15 to 20 minutes to see health benefits.

Excess Stress

Stress too causes many health problems including muscle tension, heartburn, high blood pressure, and susceptibly to sickness. Symptoms include a change in appetite, weight, or sleeping patterns, Legato says, as well as feelings of sadness or anxiety.

An increased amount of exercise can actually help you de-stress because of the endorphins released, which trigger a positive feeling in the body and reduce your perception to pain, according to WebMD.

Too much alcohol and too much junk food

Excess drinking and eating can harm the body in a myriad of ways. Liver damage, obesity, and an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease are more likely with too much alcohol and too many sweets, according to NetDoctor. Many men binge eat once they get home from work. They skip breakfast and lunch and eat an over-portioned dinner, according to John Santa, M.D. former director of Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center.

The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute suggests emphasizing fruits and vegetables throughout the day, limiting sugars and saturated fats, and controlling portion sizes.

Depression

Though women are more prone to suffer from depression than men, men have been found starting other addictions such as alcoholism and drugs as a result. 

“Men are taught to cope and not complain so depression turns inward and can really destroy their health,” said Legato. 

Anger and aggression are common reactions to depression instead of sadness in men, according to the National Institute of Health. Other symptoms include headaches, increased heartbeat, tightened chest, digestive issues, or changes in eating and sleeping patterns.

The first step, according to Legato, is to make an appointment with a medical professional to get started with treatment right away.

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