Get your mo’ on: What is Movember?
If you happen to see a lot of men with moustaches this November it may not be because they are only concerned about their looks. Each November thousands of men around the world commit to growing moustaches or Mo’s during ‘Movember’ to raise vital awareness and funds for men’s health issues, especially prostate and testicular cancer.
Movember started in Melbourne, Australia in 2003 and has inspired more than 1.9 million participants in formal campaigns around the world. In 2011, over 850,000 men and women raised $126.3 million USD. The Movember mission is to change the habits of men when it comes to attitudes about their health and to educate about health risks and the preventive actions that can increase early detection. Men who commit to growing a moustache serve as education to others about men’s health.
If you are interested in signing up to participate in the Movember campaign you can register as a Mo Bro or even a Mo Sista. Mo Sistas like myself may not be able to grow a moustache, but they can still show support and encourage men in their life to participate. There are also various events across the country.
Here are some men’s health tips for you and your loved ones:
KNOW YOUR FAMILY HEALTH HISTORY Family history is key to understanding your health. Family history affects your level of risk for cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke, among other illnesses. Talk to your family and take note of illnesses that a direct relative has experienced.
MANAGE YOUR STRESS Stress, particularly long-term stress, can be the factor in the onset or worsening of ill health. Managing your stress is essential to your health and well-being. Take ‘time out’ each day and go for a walk or do something you find relaxing.
STAY AT A HEALTHY WEIGHT Balance calories from foods and beverages with calories you burn off by physical activities. Only 33% of adults are at a healthy weight for their height. Obesity and being overweight pose a major risk for chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke and certain cancers.
SLEEP WELL The quality of your sleep can dictate how much you eat, how fast your metabolism runs, how fat or thin you are, how well you can fight off infections and how well you can cope with stress. Keep a regular pattern of sleep, going to bed and waking up at roughly the same time is key.
HAVE AN ANNUAL PHYSICAL Find a doctor and make a yearly appointment each Movember for a general health check. Getting annual checkups, preventative screening tests and immunizations are among the most important things you can do to stay healthy.