Tips for men to stay fit to fight in honor of Men’s Health month

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Kenneth W. Norman
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
June is Men's Health Awareness month. Men's health has many aspects and there are many ways to stay healthy.

For me this topic is personal because I recently earned my certification as a personal trainer, so the biggest health topics that come to mind are diet and fitness.

I believe that you will only get out of your body what you put into it. If you are constantly eating junk and expect to be at peak physical condition, you are mistaken. I'm not saying you have to completely do away with junk food altogether, but your healthy meals should far outweigh your cheat meals. A key part of a healthy diet is portion control. Too much of anything is never a good thing. It is recommended that we eat five to six small meals throughout the day.

A healthy diet should consist of:

· Fruits and vegetables
· Lean meats such as chicken breast, turkey breast, lean ground beef, bison and lean steaks.
· Fish, eggs, nuts and beans are other good sources of protein.
· When it comes to eating out at restaurants there are always healthier options to pick from on the menu.

Processed foods and foods with a high amount of saturated fats, cholesterol and added sugars should be avoided as much as possible.

When it comes to fitness, it is not hard to get the adequate amount of exercise. I understand we are all very busy with our jobs and family life. It is recommended that men get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise for most days of the week.

Here are some ways to find time to work out:

· Do pushups and crunches every hour, maybe you can even get your office members to join in.
· Walk to appointments rather than drive.
· Play some type of team sport.
· Get up early and get your exercise done before your day begins.
· Now that summer is here, the base pool is open from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. for lap swimming.

Diet and fitness will help keep you healthy, but attending regular appointments with your healthcare provider will help ensure everything is working properly.

"Men younger than 50 years old, should generally be seen at least every two to three years for preventive exams, or more frequently as recommended by their physician," said Maj. Jonathan Compton, 97th Medical Group chief of medical staff. "Of course, special populations may have more stringent requirements, such as active duty members who are seen annually at their Physical Health Assessment. Also, I recommend that men age 50 or older have prevention exams every year. These appointments are important so appropriate screenings can be accomplished for cardiovascular and cancer risks."

According to Compton, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for men, but could be prevented or delayed by adopting a healthy lifestyle.

"Although basic, the most important things men can do to prevent serious health conditions are maintaining a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and avoiding tobacco use," Compton said.

If you are having health issues do not be afraid to make an appointment with your doctor.

"Men should not be afraid to go to the doctor," Compton said. "Men often ignore symptoms because they prefer not to know what may be wrong. However, it's important to seek care early, as many conditions could worsen over time, making them more difficult to treat."

To schedule an appointment with your physician, contact the Family Practice Clinic at 481-5235.