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Men's Health - Part 1
Check out the special I'm offering this month!
A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from a reader who wanted me to discuss men's health. What I have noticed in my practice for the last 14 years is that men don't go to doctors unless they have a major problem. The fact that men go to the doctor less than women may account for men's shorter life span. When it comes to seeking care, most men will brush off annual visits. But why? Many men claim vague issues like a busy schedule, however, there may be deeper issues at play, including:
Having a "macho" attitude can account for a number of missed visits to the doctor. Studies reveal a link between self-reported masculinity and resisting routine exams.
A recent survey revealed 20% of men report fearing a poor diagnosis as the main reason for getting regular checkups.
Another major reason that accounts for men's lack of enthusiasm for annual visits is being uncomfortable with exams. In particular, rectal exams and other invasive tests are apt to give men hesitation about seeking preventative care.
The bottom line
There is certainly a link between masculinity and vulnerability. Many men wait until symptoms are persistent before seeking medical care. This can be an unfortunate mistake as many conditions are preventable or treatable when detected early!
Last week, I had a reduced price for our initial visit and most of the visits were the husbands of wives who are my patients. That tells you right there they need a push to look into their own health.
Screening options available for early detection
As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Prevention is the most important facet of maintaining health.
Look at these chilling stats:
- only 3 out of 5 men get a yearly check-up
- 12% of men over age 18 are in fair or poor health
- 40% of men only go to a doctor when they fear a chronic medical condition
- 34% of men over age 20 are overweight or obese
You may not be aware of this, but annual health checkups can help early detection of heart disease and cancer, the leading causes of death among men. Screenings are even available for blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, coronary artery disease, prostate cancer, and colon cancer!
You may already know that heart disease is the leading cause of death for men in the United States, but did you know that heart disease is responsible for 1 in every 4 male deaths?
My husband's dad died at age 50 of heart disease and did not go to the doctor. My husband was 18 at the time and found his dad dead in the kitchen. So, of course, I stay on my husband about annual blood labs and I have his blood labs sent to the Cleveland Heart Clinic for a more thorough approach because lipids are not the full answer. Looking at inflammation is the key.
High blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol, and smoking are key risk factors for heart disease and, according to the CDC, about half of Americans (49%) have at least one of these three risk factors.
Would you believe that one in three Americans have high blood pressure? In fact, over half of all Americans age 60 and older have it and over a lifetime, the risk of developing high blood pressure becomes 90%!
Risk in men increases with age and begins to climb when men hit age 45. High blood pressure is especially dangerous, because people can have it for years without knowing, which is why regular screening is so important!
Additional factors putting men at a higher risk for heart disease include:
- Overweight and obesity
- Poor diet
- Physical inactivity
- Excessive alcohol use
The best way to protect against heart disease is through regular screenings of the risk factors like checking blood pressure regularly and doing a full blood analysis that includes inflammation markers annually.
I'm offering this special now!
Because of what I stated earlier about having to run specials to get men's health checked, I have decided to run a special to the end of November for you if you live in the US. I will take 50% off my full blood analysis report that includes Cleveland Clinic heart lab testing and all risk factor markers which normally runs $1,400. That means for only $700 you can start the year knowing your risk factors and take the necessary steps for a healthier life.
Nearly 50% of all men over the age of 50 years have PIN. (The tiny changes that occur in the shape and size of the prostate gland cells, known as prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN).
Prostate cancer can be successfully treated if it is diagnosed before metastasis, but is more dangerous if it spreads, most commonly to the bones.
Initial screening is a simple blood test called a prostate specific antigen (PSA) test. If an abnormality is found, further examinations may be requested, including a digital rectal examination (DRE) or a biomarker test checking the blood, urine, or body tissues.
Risk factors include:
- age 50 and older
- at least 60% more common (and 2 to 3 times more deadly) among black men than non-Hispanic white men
- diet high in red meat or high-fat dairy products
- exposure to agent orange
Colorectal cancer (a collective term that includes both colon cancer and rectal cancer) is the second leading cause of death among American men and women. The American Cancer Society recommends colorectal cancer screening beginning at age 45 for men.
Risk factors include:
- age, most cases occur after age 50
- anyone with family history should be screened earlier
- already having cancer increases risk for having it again
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- drinking more than two alcoholic drinks per day
- a high-fat diet, with fat coming mostly from meat
Thankfully, colorectal cancer is usually preventable with screening which should start age 45. Options for screening include stool based tests and structural examinations such as a colonoscopy. We also do stool based tests and the lab that I recommend is called Doctor's Data.
Older men are twice as likely to develop melanoma as women of the same age. (In fact, by age 80, men are 3 times more likely than women in that age group to develop melanoma!) Men are also 2-3 times more likely to get non-melanoma basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers than women. One reason behind the difference may be due to men knowing less about skin cancer and the fact that men are less likely to use sunscreen. Additionally, men have thicker skin with less fat beneath, possibly making men's skin more likely to be damaged by the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays.
Unfortunately, I just lost a patient to this cancer due to him not going to the skin doctor to get a spot on his ear checked. By the time the doctor got to him, the cancer was spread throughout his lymph system. Men, don't be stubborn about going to the dermatologist!
Did you know men develop diabetes slightly more often than women do? In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 14% of adult men in the United States have been diagnosed with diabetes, compared with 11% of women.
General symptoms of prediabetes include:
- skin infections that don't heal
- excessive tiredness
- poor dental health
- inability to attain or sustain an erection
- overactive bladder
- blurred vision
Men generally don't seek attention until they have full-blown diabetes. This is a huge mistake! Early detection and lifestyle changes make it so much easier and quicker to reverse prediabetes.
Since Diabetes is on the rise, I recommend you should undergo diabetes screening at year intervals beginning at age 30, especially people who are overweight or obese. When multiple risk factors are present, screening should be done at an earlier age and more frequently.
A fasting plasma glucose test and a Hemoglobin A1c (average level of blood sugar over the past 2-3 months) is typically used for screening.
Testosterone is the primary sex hormone in men and plays various roles in the body. Levels of testosterone gradually drops in men as a natural part of aging. The decline may start in the 30s with a reduction of 1% a year starting at age 45.
1 in 4 men between ages 30 and 79 experience low testosterone levels.
Testosterone deficiency in men is associated with several serious health problems:
- Musculoskeletal problems, including osteopenia and sarcopenia (loss of muscle mass)
- Unhealthy cholesterol levels
-Type 2 Diabetes
- Cardiovascular disease
Screening for testosterone levels isn't normal routine, however, if you experience the following you may request a blood test to check levels:
- increased body fat
-decreased strength/mass of muscles
- fragile bones
- decreased body hair
- swelling/tenderness in the breast tissue
- hot flashes
- increased fatigue
- effects on cholesterol metabolism
- low sex drive
- difficulty with erections
Many of the risk factors associated with negative health outcomes are manageable through lifestyle and behavioral changes and so next week I will be dedicated to discussing strategies to change poor habits in order to lower the risks of the diseases mentioned.
Meanwhile, email me today if you would like to know more about how you could be assessed and treated without any harmful drugs. It is only with accurate and thorough laboratory analysis that we can put together the proper program for your health care goals. My goal is to educate you and your family so that you will not need any more meds.
If you're interested in seeing if we can help you, don't let time pass you by; just email me today at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you want more healthy tips you can subscribe to my YouTube channel here https://www.youtube.com/drcorinneweaver. Like and comment on my channel so I will know what tips and topics you want to know about. I am forming a community of people who want to take action in their own health with my social media channels and I want to know what health topics you want to hear.
I hope my column speaks to you and you can wake up each morning with a purpose. What I do every day is a calling, and I give God the glory for allowing His gifts to work through me. I do believe in miracles, because I get to see them every day! For more information you can go to www.nomoremedsmovement.com and sign up for my closed Facebook group #NoMoreMeds-Community for more healthy tips.
Dr. Corinne Weaver
Dr. Corinne Weaver is a compassionate upper cervical chiropractor, educator, motivational speaker, mother of three, and internationally bestselling author. In 2004, she founded the Upper Cervical Wellness Center in Indian Trail, North Carolina. Over the last 13 years, she has helped thousands of clients restore their brain to-body function. When she was 10 years old, she lost her own health as the result of a bike accident that led to having asthma and allergy issues that she thought she would always have to endure. Then, after her first upper cervical adjustment at age 21, her health began to improve thanks to upper cervical care and natural herbal remedies. This enabled her to create a drug-free wellness lifestyle for herself and her family, and she also enthusiastically discovered her calling to help children heal naturally.
Dr. Weaver was recently named one of Charlotte magazine's "Top Doctors" in 2016 and is now a number-one internationally bestselling author to two books: Learning How to Breathe and No More Meds.
Upper Cervical Wellness Center is known for finding the root cause of health concerns through lifestyle changes, diagnostic testing, nutraceutical supplementation, and correction of subluxation (as opposed to just medicating the symptoms). The practice offers cutting-edge technological care at its state-of-the-art facility, including laser-aligned upper cervical X-rays, bioimpedance analysis (measures body composition), digital thermography (locates thermal abnormalities characterized by skin inflammation), and complete nutritional blood analysis, which is focused on disease prevention.