Justin Sonnenburg, co-authhor of The Good Gut.
Topic: Taking control of your weight, your mood, and your long-term health
Issues: The relationship between our bodies and the trillions of organisms that live in our gut; the ways those organisms (called “microbiota”) determine whether we’re sick or healthy, fit or obese, sunny or moody; why our microbiota is facing a “mass extinction event.”
Justin Sonnenburg, co-authhor of The Good Gut.
Call it what you will: beer belly, love handles, gut, spare tire, or anything else. Whatever the words, they’re all referring to the same thing: belly fat, which is one of the most common types of fat for men. As you’ve no doubt noticed, as we gain weight, our thighs, legs, and arms usually don’t change much. Instead, our fat tends to accumulate around the chest, neck, and stomach. Women, on the other hand, tend to store their fat a little lower, around the butt and thighs. Fat, no matter where it’s stored, is a pretty clear indicator that you’re out of shape, and it can negatively affect your self-esteem. But that’s just the beginning. Unlike fat in other areas, having belly fat increases your risk of developing a number of serious health conditions, some of which are perfectly capable of killing you.
Is All Belly Fat the Same?
In short, No. Belly fat comes in two very different varieties. First, there’s subcutaneous (which literally means “under the skin”) belly fat, which is found, well, just under the skin. Subcutaneous fat around your belly is no different than subcutaneous fat anywhere else on your body, whether it’s your butt, your arms, your legs, or your toes. It’s the fat that you can pinch between your fingers. Aside from being unsightly and a clear indication that you need to lose weight, subcutaneous fat isn’t particularly dangerous. [Read more…]
Cancer. Just the name sparks fear in the hearts of men all around the world. Whether you’re talking about lung cancer, prostate cancer, stomach cancer, esophageal cancer, or any of the other numerous forms, cancer is frightening and too often deadly. However, it doesn’t have to get you. While genetic predisposition certainly plays a role in whether you develop cancer or not, there are numerous things that you can do to prevent it.
- Stop Using Tobacco
If there is one absolutely must-do step you can take to prevent cancer, it’s kicking tobacco out of your life. Tobacco in any form (including cigarettes, cigars, pipes and chewing tobacco) is a cancer causing substance. Lung, throat, and mouth cancer are just for starters. If you can’t quit smoking, consider switching to an electronic cigarette or other smoking substitute (although be aware: e-cigs have plenty of health risks too). It’s not the nicotine that will kill you. It’s the tobacco.
- Take Steps to Prevent Cancer-Contributing Infections
Cancer doesn’t come only from radiation and smoking. In fact, a number of infections can actually contribute to the likelihood that you’ll develop cancer. HIV, hepatitis, and HPV are just three of the viruses that may increase your chances of also developing cancer.
- Watch What You Eat
What you eat is important for energy, health, and weight considerations, but it’s also important for cancer prevention. A number of foods can make you more susceptible to cancer, including grilled meats, red meat, and salty foods. By extension, anything that adds pounds to your frame could also be considered a cancer encourager, since being obese also increases your cancer risk. If you’re overweight or obese, take steps to shed those pounds now.
As many of us know, minorities (in particular African Americans and Hispanics) generally have worse health outcomes than Whites. But what most people don’t know is that minority men have far worse health outcomes than minority women. It’s a crisis that deserves our attention.
Dr. Jean Bonhomme is an expert on minority health and he’s got a wonderful piece on this topic on the Talking About Men’s Health blog. Read it here.
For more information on the health of men, boys, and those who love them, visit Men’s Health Network.
As those of us who work in men’s health know, one of the biggest obstacles keeping men from being as healthy as they could be is their overall reluctance to see a medical professional, whether that’s for regular, preventive care, or for an actual problem. When asked why they’re so resistant, men have a lot of reasons: not wanting to ask for help or be seen as weak, hoping the problem will go away on its own or simply not wanting to know, not having insurance or not being able pay, and a general feeling that healthcare is a women’s issue. According to a recent study, we can now add one more: not being married.
Doni Wilson, author of The Stress Remedy.
Topic: Master your body’s synergy and optimize your health.
Issues: How to analyze the sources of your stress and determine how your body has been affected; understanding synergy; how imbalances create weight gain, cholesterol problems, and more; leaky gut and how it could be compromising your entire system.
Emma Jenner, author of Keep Calm and Parent On.
Topic: Raising children by asking more from then and doing less for them.
Issues: Manners and respect; boundaries and consequences; scheduling and routines; communication; self-esteem; trusting your instincts; quality time.