National Men's Health Week June 10th - 16th

by Jane Ashley

Did you know that June 10th through June 16th (Father’s Day) is National Men’s Health Week?

Mens Health Week Logo

What is National Men’s Health Week?

National Men’s Health Week is the week that leads up to Father’s Day each year — to focus on health issues that disproportionately affect men. Of course, there are the obvious health issues that men face … just because they are men. These issues include cancer of the prostate, testicles and penis. But other health issues affect more men than women. National Men’s Health Week focuses on health issues where the majority of those diagnosed are men.

Men’s Health Facts

Men die at higher rates than women from nine out of the leading ten causes of death. Here are some examples:
• Cause & Rate Men Women (per 100,000 persons)
• Heart Disease 210.9 131.8
• Cancer 192.9 138.1
• Injuries 54.7 27.3
• Stroke 36.9 35.6
• Diabetes 25.6 17.2
• Suicide 20.7 5.8
• HIV/AIDS 3.0 1.1

Mens Health Infographic

Women in the U.S. live about five years longer than men. The overall death rate, per 100,000 persons) is 861.0 for men compared to 617.5 for women.

Men are almost twice more likely to die of ischemic heart disease than woman – 133.5 to 71.6.

More men die of cancer than women. Lung cancer is the cause of death of 51.7 men compared to 34.7 women. For colorectal cancer, 16.9 men per 100,000 persons compared to 12.1 women.

We may consider homicide as a leading cause of death, but it is. African-American men have a 1 out of 30 chance of being a homicide victim while white men have just a 1 in 179 chance of being a homicide victim. White females only have a 1 in 495 chance of death by homicide.

Why are men at increased risk for death?

Several reasons put men at higher risk for death. Some of these reasons could be modified to prevent earlier mortality among men.
• Health insurance – fewer men have health insurance than women.
• Annual physicals – men make half as many preventative visits to doctors.
• Dangerous employment – men are more likely to work in dangerous jobs, like firefighting, mining, commercial fishing, construction and in the military.
• Lifestyle – men are more likely to participate in risky behaviors and at younger ages. More men smoke than women.
• Less social – men tend to less social. Less social connection is linked to a higher death rate.
• Heart disease – men are 50 percent more likely to die of heart disease than women.

What are the most common cancers among men?

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in men – we see a similar situation where breast cancer is the most common in women. However, there are some cancers that both men and women get, but these cancers are much more likely in men.

Prostate. Almost 175,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year in the U.S. Prostate cancer accounts for about 31,500 deaths annually in the U.S.

Lung. Over 116,000 cases of lung cancer are diagnosed in U.S. men every year. Lung cancer is the second leading cause of death in men, accounting for over 76,000 deaths annually.

Colorectal. Men are slightly more likely to develop colorectal cancer than women. About 27,000 men die annually of colorectal cancer.

Bladder. Men are four times more likely to develop bladder cancer than women.

Melanoma. Men are twice as likely to develop melanoma by age 65 and three times more likely by age 80 than women. The increased risk is probably attributable to men’s occupations and hobbies.

Head and Neck. About 75 percent of head and neck cancers occur in men.

Leukemia. Two of the most common types of leukemia are more common in men.

While men can’t change their past sun exposure or smoking history, they can be proactive to wear sunscreen and stop smoking. Commit to having regular physical exams. Make an appointment if new symptoms such as a cough that won’t go away or if you experience rectal bleeding. Early detection is critical to curing cancer.

Mhm Be Active Get Screened

Why is it so important for men to take care of their health?

Men work hard throughout their life as the primary wage-earner. They take care of the yard and might be the “handyman” around the house too. So after all of that hard work, men ought to be able to look forward to a satisfying retirement, full of relaxation and hobbies. But with an average life expectancy of five years less than women, those happy retirement years may be cut short.

Another reason is to help protect your spouse from poverty. A major cause of poverty in women over 65 is the death of their spouse and the expenses caused by his death.

For more information on specific men’s health issues, visit the

What are you doing to stay healthy? Leave us a note in the comments below. 

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