Top 10 Health Risks

Menstuff® has compiled the following information on the top 10 health risks for men.

Whether you're a guy who's concerned about staying healthy or a woman looking out for a man you care about, you need to be aware of major health risks faced by men and the do's and don'ts of disease prevention. Take the Men's Health Quiz to discover how much you know (and what you need to learn) about men's biggest health concerns.

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1. What should men avoid to prevent impotence?

A. Eating steak; B. Smoking; C. Using cellular phones; D. Playing sports; E. All of the above

2. What amount of drinking is considered "moderate" for men and is not associated with any serious health risks?

A. 1 drink a day; B. 2 drinks a day; C. 3 drinks a day; D. 4 drinks a day; E. Not drinking at all

3. Which of the following "women's conditions" can also occur in men?

A. Osteoporosis; B. Breast cancer; C. Eating disorders; D. PMS; E. Osteoporosis, breast cancer and eating disorders; F. All of the above

4. Which group is most at risk for testicular cancer?

A. Men between ages 15 and 35; B. Men between ages 35 and 50; C. Men over 50; D. Any man at any age

5. Which of the following is the number one killer of American males?

A. Cancer; B. Accidents; C. Violent crime; D. Heart disease

6. Who should have a screening test for colorectal cancer?

A. Men with a family history of colon or rectum cancer; B. Men with a diet high in fat and calories, low in fiber; C. Men over age 50; D. Men with a history of polyps in the colon; E. Men with a history of ulcers; F. Any of the above

7. Male smokers who quit may add years to their lives. How much can a man who quits between age 35 and 39 extend his life?

A. Less than a year; B. One year; C. Two to three years; D. Five years; E. 10 years or more

8. What percentage of men show signs of hair loss in their 20s?

A. 5; B. 10; C. 20; D. 30

9. What factors put a man at risk for prostate cancer?

A. Turning 55; B. A family history of prostate cancer; C. A diet high in animal fat; D. Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables; E. Turning 55, a family history of prostate cancer and a diet high in animal fat; F. All of the above

10. It's commonly known that men tend not to live as long as women. But what is a man's average life expectancy, in years?

A. 50.4; B. 70.2; C. 74.1; D. 78.5; E. 85.0


Answer # 01: Smoking may play a role in causing impotence. Other factors that could lead to impotence -- which affects between 10 to 15 million men in the U.S. -- include the taking of medicines such as high blood pressure drugs, antihistamines, antidepressants, appetite suppressants and cimetidine (an ulcer drug); psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, guilt, depression, low self-esteem or fear of sexual failure; and diseases, including diabetes, kidney disease, chronic alcoholism, multiple sclerosis, atherosclerosis and vascular disease. Food, cell phones and sports have no effect on a man's risk of impotence.
Source: The National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases


Answer 02: 2 drinks a day

For men, two drinks a day are considered moderate. (In women, or a man over the age of 65, this decreases to one drink a day.) A standard drink is defined as a 12-ounce bottle of beer or a wine cooler, one five-ounce glass of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits. Drinking in moderation can even have beneficial effects on the heart, especially for men over 45 who are at greater risk for a heart attack. However, more than two drinks per day can raise the risk for motor vehicle crashes, other injuries, high blood pressure, stroke, violence, suicide and certain types of cancer.

Sources: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health; 2000 Dietary Guidelines for Americans from the Department of Health and Human Services

Answer 03: Osteoporosis, breast cancer and eating disorders all occur in men too, though their prevalence is much greater in the female population. As a result, many men, unaware that the diseases affect both sexes, may fail to recognize symptoms. Likewise, doctors and families often don't suspect these illnesses. This can delay therapy and make disorders difficult to treat.

Source: U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Answer 04: Men between ages 15 and 35

Testicular cancer is the most common cancer for men aged 15 to 35, and it is more common in Caucasian men than African-American men. But any man can get it at any age. This is why it's important for men to have routine physical exams and to talk to their doctor if they notice anything unusual about their testicles, like a painless lump or swelling, an enlargement or change in the way their testicles feel, or pain or discomfort in a testicle or the scrotum. If this cancer is detected early, the treatment can be less aggressive, with fewer side effects.

Source: National Cancer Institute

Answer 05: Heart disease

Heart disease is the single biggest killer of American males -- but there are many ways for men to lower their risk. They should have their blood cholesterol and blood pressure checked regularly (and take steps to lower them if they're high). They shouldn't smoke. They should be physically active (getting 30 to 60 minutes of vigorous activity at least three to four times a week) and maintain a healthy weight. They should eat healthy foods that are low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium, and avoid drinking more than two alcoholic beverages a day.

Source: American Heart Association

Answer 06: Any of the above

Colorectal cancer, which includes both colon cancer and rectal cancer, is usually curable when caught early; detection by screenings could save up to 30,000 lives a year in the U.S. Men with any of the risk factors listed are at higher risk and should visit their doctor to learn when to begin screening tests.

Source: National Cancer Institute

Answer 07: Five years

Here's a great reason to stop smoking: Men who quit between the ages of 35 to 39 could add an average of five years to their lives. This is more than for female smokers who quit between ages 35 to 39 -- they add an average of three years to their life expectancy.

Source: U.S. Surgeon General's Office

Answer 08: 20

Approximately 20 percent of Caucasian men will show signs of male pattern baldness by the age of 20. The incidence of male pattern baldness increases 10 percent per decade through a man's life. Hereditary balding or thinning is the most common cause of hair loss. The tendency can be inherited from either the mother's or father's side of the family.

Source: American Academy of Dermatology

Answer 09: Turning 55, a family history of prostate cancer and a diet high in animal fat

The average age of a men diagnosed with prostate cancer is 70; men over 55 are at high risk, as are men with a family history of prostate cancer and men who consume a diet high in animal fat. On the other hand, men with a diet high in fruits and vegetables may actually lower their chances of contracting prostate cancer.

Source: National Cancer Institute

Answer 10: 73.8

A man's average life expectancy is 74.1 years -- more than 10 percent lower than that of a woman. (As of 1998, the average life expectancy for women was 79.5.)

It is possible to live longer by maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Avoid the biggest health risks by following the guidelines mentioned throughout this quiz.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics

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