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Which Health Conditions are Men More Prone to?

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By Apollo Pharmacy, Published on - 22 November 2021, Updated on - 29 December 2021

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Men’s health is a topic that seldom gets as much priority as it should. It is said that men often pay far less attention to their health than women do. They are also more likely to smoke, drink alcohol, make unhealthy choices, and lead a less healthy lifestyle. All this has the potential to take a heavy toll on their health in the long run.

The Movember Foundation holds an annual event known as “Movember” to raise awareness of men’s health issues such as suicide, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer. Its main objective is to change the face of men’s health.

Men are encouraged to participate in the event by growing their moustaches for the entire month of November. Movember aims to reduce the instances of preventable deaths in men through early detection of diseases, timely and effective treatments, and the adoption of healthier lifestyles.  

Health conditions that men are more prone to

While there are many conditions that affect both men and women, there are some that impact men quite disproportionately. Experts suggest identifying those conditions and taking active steps to prevent or diagnose them early on. Let us look at some of the most common conditions that affect men’s health:

  • Cardiovascular diseases

Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) is a collective term used to refer to disorders of the heart and blood vessels such as coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, peripheral arterial disease, rheumatic heart disease, deep vein thrombosis, and pulmonary embolism. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 1.79 crore people died from cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) in 2019. Most of them were men.

Multiple studies have found that men, on average, develop heart disease 10 years earlier than women do. Unhealthy diet and behavioral factors like smoking, high intake of alcohol, and poor stress-coping mechanism are believed to contribute to a higher risk of CVDs in men.

  • Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas is no longer able to secrete enough insulin, a hormone that facilitates the passage of glucose from the food we eat into the cells to produce energy. If left untreated, the condition can lead to vision problems, nerve, and renal damage, heart disease, stroke, or even amputation of a toe, foot, or leg.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), men are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes at a lower weight than women. In fact, more men are at a greater risk of suffering health complications due to undiagnosed diabetes than women. Researchers attribute the higher incidence of type 2 diabetes in men to high visceral (abdominal) fat mass. Having more visceral fat is strongly associated with a higher risk of metabolic syndrome, including type 2 diabetes.

  • Lung cancer

According to studies, the incidence of lung cancer has historically been higher in men than in women. Moreover, every year more men are diagnosed with and develop lung cancer than in previous years. Men are also less likely to survive the disease at all stages than women. Experts attribute the elevated risk in men to several factors such as higher rates of smoking and drinking than women, occupational hazards, and the tendency not to seek help.

  • Liver disease

Liver disease is a term that is used to refer to different types of illnesses that affect the liver. Some of the most common types of liver disease are alcoholic liver disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, viral hepatitis, cirrhosis, and liver cancer. Research has shown that men may be more prone to liver diseases than women. According to multiple studies, high intake of alcohol, tobacco use, obesity, unsafe sex practices, and exposure to certain chemicals and toxins may be responsible for a higher incidence of liver diseases in males.

  • Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer is cancer that occurs in the prostate, a small gland that produces the seminal fluid in men. While it is not precisely clear what causes prostate cancer, researchers suspect that changes in DNA of the prostate cells that facilitate the rapid growth of abnormal cells might be responsible for the development of the disease. It is estimated that nearly all men are at risk for prostate cancer. However, the risk increases significantly with age, especially after 50 years. Men who have a family history of prostate cancer are also at a greater risk of the disease.

What can men do to reduce the risk of diseases?

While there is no one-size-fits-all solution to reduce the risk of the aforementioned conditions in men, experts say that leading a healthy and active lifestyle can offer protective benefits.

Some of the measures that can help lower the health risks for diseases in men are:

  • Quit smoking: Men who smoke or use other tobacco products should consult their physician to know more about smoking cessation as smoking increases the risk of many diseases. It is also recommended to avoid exposure to passive smoke, air pollution, and chemicals.
  • Follow a nutritious diet: Choose lean protein sources such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and fish. Limit consumption of processed foods high in saturated and trans fats, and those with added sugar and sodium
  • Maintain a healthy weight: By losing extra body weight especially belly fat, men can reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease and various types of cancer.
  • Become physically active: All types of exercise and physical activity are good for overall health. Regular physical activity can help men manage their weight, reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and certain types of cancer. Brisk walking, cycling, and swimming are some of the options for beginners.
  • Limit intake of alcohol: Physicians recommend abstaining from alcohol for best health outcomes. However, men who still choose to consume alcohol should do so in moderation. Men who are 65 years or younger should not drink more than 2 glasses a day, and those who are 65 or older should limit their intake to 1 glass a day.
  • Reduce stress: High levels of stress can take a severe toll on the immune system of the body. Therefore, men must take active steps to avoid being in stressful situations. Yoga, meditation, and deep breathing are some of the techniques that can help calm the mind and reduce stress.


Compared to women, men tend to pay less attention to their overall health. This can prove detrimental to their own well-being in the long run. Leading a healthy lifestyle can play a major role in preventing many of the conditions that men are more prone to. Similarly, knowing the common conditions that affect men can aid in early diagnosis and yield better health outcomes.

To ensure overall health and screen common health conditions on time:

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