June is the 21st annual Men’s Health Month, and today is the start of International Men’s Health week.
Celebrated each year during the week leading up to and including Father’s Day, President Clinton signed Men’s Health Week into law in 1994, and rightfully so: we needed to pay more attention to men’s health back then, and we still do today.
According to the CDC, “in 1920, women lived, on average, one year longer than men. Now, men, on average, die almost five years earlier than women.” In lieu of this fact, however, the CDC also reports that females are 100% more likely to see the doctor for annual visits and preventative care than men are.
In order to combat such issues, Men’s National Health month and week are observed in order to raise awareness of “preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of disease” among males according to Men’sHealthMonth.org. Another goal is to get men and boys to “seek regular medical advice and early treatment for disease and injury.”
Men’s Health Week also became an international observance when the Men’s Health Network, comprised of six representatives from top various international men’s health organizations met at the 2nd World Congress on Men’s Health in Vienna, Austria in 2002 and decided to take the observance global.
The MHN states that the goal of it’s annual International Men’s Health Week is to “increase awareness of male health issues on a global level and to encourage inter-and intra-national institutions to develop health policies and services that meet the specific needs of men, boys, and their families.”
Here are some tips for getting involved:
- Show your support by wearing blue this week (June 15-21) and all month long.
- Remember that men’s health month awareness isn’t just for men—women are invited to encourage the men in their lives to get regular physicals and take part in activities beneficial for their health.
- Give Dad the gift of health this Father’s day with a care package that includes healthy treats likes nuts and sweet fruits. Include a message with a call to action to get him to make an appointment for an annual check up with his doc. He’ll thank you for it for years to come.
- Get outside with the men in your life. Summer is the perfect time to take a swim, take a hike, or just go for a walk. Make it a point this week, month and all year long to do some psychical activity with the men who are important to you.
For more tips on how men and everyone in the family can stay happy and healthy, check out the Healthy Sense of Self book.