Did you know that the life expectancy for men is at least 5 years less than it is for women, and of the top 10 causes of death in the U.S., men are more likely than women to die from nine of them?  Do you know why that is?

It’s because women tend to be much more proactive about their health care than men.

Unlike women, who are more likely to see the doctor for wellness checks, most men don’t go to the doctor unless they’re actually sick or have some reason to be concerned.  And not only do women see their doctor more regularly for preventive care, but they are also more likely to discuss health concerns and pop-up issues with friends who help them determine if they should see their healthcare provider.

Well, November is “Movember,” annual event involving the growing of mustaches, to heighten the awareness of preventable men’s health problems by prompting them to seek regular medical advice and early treatment for disease and injury.

Acupuncture for Men

As part of that effort, we wanted to address the many ways acupuncture can help men achieve greater overall wellness.

The ancient healing art of acupuncture involves the insertion of tiny, hairlike needles into strategic points of the body to regulate the flow of Qi, or life energy. It’s based on the theory that if the energy flow is blocked or interrupted, pain, illness or injury can result. 

Acupuncture is a commonly used therapy to treat a variety of ailments and conditions experienced by both genders: chronic headaches, nerve and joint pain, back pain or sports injuries, gastrointestinal issues, and weight management, among others.  When used in conjunction with other therapies, acupuncture can lead to a reduced dosage of pharmaceuticals with the same results and lower side effects and help with nausea associated with chemotherapy.

But did you know that acupuncture is proven effective for addressing a number of health issues specific to men?

It’s true.  Acupuncture can be an effective tool for addressing prostatitis, male infertility, high blood pressure and hormonal imbalances associated with aging/andropause. 

Men Cancer Statistics

The top 3 cancers in men are prostate cancer, lung cancer, and colorectal cancer, in that order.  Unfortunately, prostate and colorectal cancers often don’t present symptoms until the later stages, and lung cancer can have early symptoms like headaches, coughing, and hoarseness, that don’t seem indicative of a major illness.  It’s only if the symptoms are prolonged and worsen over time that men are alerted to a bigger problem, so it’s important to pay attention to health changes and discuss them with your healthcare practitioner at regular check-ups.

In addition, knowing your risk factors and practicing preventative measures can go a long way in keeping you from becoming one of the more than one million people who will be diagnosed with cancer in 2016.

Age, race, family history, and lifestyle choices such as whether or not you smoke, drink to excess, and maintain healthy diet and exercise habits, all contribute to your chances of developing these cancers.  If you are overweight, have diabetes or other risk factors and make less-than-optimal choices regarding your health, monitoring changes even more closely is a good idea.

The goal is to increase early cancer detection, diagnosis, and effective treatments, and ultimately reduce the number of preventable deaths.  For specific times, when you should see your provider and types of test, read Men’s Health Screening Guidelines.

At Whole Body Health, we truly hope that men use the month of November to become more aware of healthcare needs and more proactive about their wellness. Allow us to discuss how holistic nutritional therapies and acupuncture can be part of a routine to maintain your health naturally.