Happy Fathers Day!
Celebrate the special men in your life by providing them with information on how they can keep their bodies healthy and happy for many more years to come!
Despite the fact that men often have fewer health risks than women, men on average die seven years earlier than women do. Some scholars suggest that this phenomenon may be attributed to the fact that men tend not to care for their health as much as women do. A man is 2 to 2 ½ less likely to have sought medical care in the past year than a woman. They are also less likely to seek medical attention in the event of an accident or other acute medical concern. These actions can be fatal for men. Some suggest that nearly half of all deaths yearly in the United States could have been prevented if timely medical action had been taken.1 Micronutrient deficiency may also contribute to this gap between men and women.
Cardiovascular heart disease is the leading cause of death in men in the United States.2 Sadly, many cardiovascular disease risk factors: obesity, lack of exercise, tobacco use and poor diet, can be avoided by lifestyle changes. Men who have a heavy abdominal fat distribution have a higher risk of heart disease.3,4 Obesity increases a man’s risk of heart disease.5 Epidemiological studies found that men who did not have high blood pressure delayed cardiovascular disease by an average of 7.2 years over those that had high blood pressure. Men with high blood pressure also lived 5.1 to 4.9 fewer years on average than those who had normal blood pressure.6 High blood cholesterol has also been linked with a higher ten-year mortality rate in men. Middle Aged men who had preexisting cardiovascular disease and high cholesterol had a 19.6% 10 year mortality rate.7,8 Diabetes also significantly increased a man’s risk for developing a cardiovascular disease and increased morbidity.9,10
A body that does not have proper nutrition is more vulnerable to disease and weight gain. Fresh fruits and vegetables are an essential part of a healthy diet. A 19 year study of middle aged men found an inverse relationship between fruit and vegetable intake with cardiovascular disease incidence.11 Dietary supplements can be an important part of a balanced diet.12–15 A-lipoic acid can be found naturally in some foods but studies suggest it is more helpful to the body when used in supplement form. It is a natural antioxidant and is believed to be effective in lowering cholesterol levels and arterial sclerosis.16 Men who have a lower concentration of ascorbic acid, vitamin C, in their blood tended to have a higher rate of coronary artery calcium. Proper vitamin C intake is also associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.17,18,19 Vitamin E and Vitamin C are known as the antioxidant vitamins.20 Studies suggest that a high, regular intake of vitamin E is associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease in men.21 Vitamin D may reduce blood pressure. In fact vitamin D is so vital to blood pressure animal studies suggest that vitamin D deficiency can lead to hypertension. Currently fortified foods do not contain enough vitamin D to increase vitamin D blood serum, meaning that supplementation is often needed.22 Patients with congestive heart failure that took Coenzyme Q10 had fewer complications and hospitalizations.23
Men and Multivitamins
A Swedish study found that men who took a daily multivitamin had a reduced risk of heart attack.24,25 A randomized trial found that men who took multivitamins with vitamins A, C and E had an decreased risk of heart disease as well as the added benefits of a reduced risk of prostate cancer and eye disease.26
The leading cause of death in men is cardiovascular disease. The onset of cardiovascular disease and its risk factors, obesity, hypertension, and diabetes bring a significantly higher risk of morbidity. Changes in diet and the addition of a multivitamin could reduce these risks, prolonging a man’s life.