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Health Tidbits for Men

Fitness for mind and body.


Give gout the boot -- calcium eases "big toe-itis". New research suggests that getting enough calcium may prevent gout, a toe-targeting disorder that favors men. If you are a man over 40 with a family history of gout, aim for 1,000mg of calcium daily. That much calcium reduces the risk of gout by 40-percent. (Data presented after a study on 48,000 men over 12 years by the American College of Rheumatology).

You can get more information from the Arthritis Foundation. Visit their Web site at Arthritis.org.

Men and Chocolate

Double Chocolate Truffle Chocolate contains large amounts of the same beneficial plant chemicals that now have burnished the reputation of tea. In fact, just one ounce of chocolate has about as much of these plant chemicals as a cup of brewed black tea. One large, ongoing study of the benefits of exercise found that men who eat chocolate in moderation (one to three bars a month) live longer than those who eat none!

Gaining Muscle

Most men need to consume an additional 2,500 to 3,500 calories a week to gain one pound of muscle each week. You can pump iron until you're blue in the face, but if you don't augment your training efforts with enough food and fluid, the laws of human biology dictate that you will not get any bigger. When it comes to gaining muscle, the most important thing is eating enough calories to fuel both your exercise and the metabolic processes needed to build muscle. Most men who have trouble gaining weight and strength are not eating enough, or are eating too much of the wrong foods.

Yoga for Men

Down Dog Yoga Pose Men often push aside the stress that they feel and give little importance to relaxation techniques. One of the results is the tendency of men to develop heart disease at an earlier age than women. Yoga has many benefits that can help men to learn how to relax. The participant works through a series of poses to improve strength, flexibility, and breathing. Learning how to breathe from the diaphragm can help throughout the day to release tension. Also, many male athletes forget about muscle flexibility focusing only on strength and performance. A yoga class is a great way to work on flexibility if you do not work on it on your own. There are many types of classes, so check around to find the class that suits your goals. If you wish to incorporate strength training into yoga, check into power yoga. You would be surprised at how this challenges even the strongest of muscles!

Breaking the "Seal"

Have you ever asked yourself why, at a party, you can not urinate for hours, but once you go, you just keep on going? It's because the diuretic effect of alcohol is taking over by the time you seek relief. According to John P. Long, M.D., a urologist at the New England Medical Center in Boston, alcohol interferes with your body's secretion of antidiuretic hormone (ADH). Without this hormone, your body can't regulate urine output and drains more water than usual. Additionally, the longer it takes your liver to clear the alcohol, the stronger the diuretic effect will be. You'll feel the need as long as there's liquid in your bladder. In truth, you "broke the seal" when you opened the first can of the night.

Consider Water

The touted eight glasses of water a day is more than just good advice. It can help you look and feel younger. This will help your workout, your skin, and elimination. Water helps clean out your system. Since the body is mostly water, even slight, non-dangerous dehydration can be evident in dryer skin, less elasticity to the face and fatigue. See: Why Water?

Take Care of Your Heart

Health Tidbits for Men and their Heart A study published in the journal of the American Medical Association (Vol. 272, no. 18, pp 1439-41) showed that men with the highest levels of carotenoids had up to 60 percent fewer heart attacks and deaths. Carotenoids are the pigments which give fruits and vegetables their color. To date, over 600 have been identified and more than 60 can be found in food. There is increasing evidence that many carotenoids (alpha carotene, beta-carotene cryptoxanthin, lutein, lycopene and zeaxanthin) have powerful antioxidant properties which could help to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer. Furthermore, increasing your consumption of foods containing these substances increases your body's tissue levels.

To maintain a healthy heart, start to increase your carotenoid levels by eating more of the following foods:
Carrots, bell peppers, pumpkin, apricots, parsley, spinach, kale, sweet potatoes, tangerines, oranges, papayas, lettuce, broccoli, tomatoes, pink grapefruit, watermelon, okra, and corn.

Antidepressants and the Male Sex Drive

Antidepressants help some men fight premature ejaculation, but they can spoil a night of sex for others. In a recent survey of 1,763 men taking antidepressants, 37-percent reported experiencing erectile dysfunction. Doctors have known about the relationship between these drugs and sexual dysfunction for years, but this is the first study to show how widespread the problem really is. If you noticed a drop in sex drive or experienced erectile dysfunction, delay of orgasm, or inability to achieve orgasm, talk to your doctor about Wellbutrin or Serzone. They function differently in the brain than other antidepressants and trigger fewer sexual side effects.

Excess Weight and the Male Sex Drive

Overweight men are more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction than slimmer counterparts, according to data presented at a meeting of the American Urological Association. Men between the ages of 51 and 88 reported moderate to severe erectile dysfunction. These men also were more likely to have high blood pressure and weigh more.

Men with a waistline measuring 42-inches were nearly twice as likely to suffer erectile dysfunction (ED) compared with men whose girth measured 32-inches. Even after adjusting for age, smoking and hypertension, men with a larger waistline were more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction, the study said. The data also showed that men who were inactive were more likely to suffer from ED than men who exercised at least 30 minutes per day.

Stress Makes Matters Worse

Actually, stress could be to blame as well -- it's the number-one cause of erection trouble today! Give your sex drive a boost, by cutting down on your stress levels.

Should Men be Tested for Testosterone Levels?

It's widely agreed that most men with total circulating testosterone levels of less than 200ng/dL would benefit from male supplements. To raise awareness about the condition, the Men's Health Network recently launched the first National Testosterone Tune-Up. You can have a free consultation with a doctor from now through the end of July.

Flax Seed and Your Prostate

Men with early stage prostate cancer who ate a low-fat diet plus three tablespoons of ground flaxseed daily for just over a month saw their FSA levels drop. They also saw their testosterone and cholesterol levels go down.

PSA, or prostate-specific antigen, is an indication of tumor growth. The men who had more advanced cancers saw the PSA scores continue to rise. But researchers speculate that had they stayed on a flaxseed diet longer, they might have seen some benefit as well.

Flaxseed is high in fiber, lignans and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which may help thwart cancer. You can purchase flaxseed in the bulk section of your grocery store or in healthy-food stores.

Source:  Urology, Volume 58, Page 47

Surgery Free Vasectomy?

A no-cut procedure could take most of the pain and fear out of a vasectomy! In a standard vasectomy, a surgeon snips out a small section of the vas deferens (the tubes that carry sperm to the urethra), then seals the ends to block sperm. Doctors using the new technique would locate the tubes manually within the scrotum and attach a plastic clamp to hold them in place. Short pulses of ultrasound energy then fire away for 30 to 60 seconds to kill cells along the vas deferens walls, forming scar tissue that creates a barrier to sperm.

More studies will be conducted to determine whether the procedure blocks all sperm permanently. If successful, more testing will be done on men, which could mean a much easier ordeal. Currently it is not available, but watch for it in the not too distant future, and/or check with your doctor from time to time to learn of the progress on this new procedure.

Last But Not Least, Shaving

Shaving Cream. Coconut oil keeps the razor gliding smoothly while leaving skin smooth and soft.

After Shave. Don’t want unpleasant bumps and rashes after shaving? Coconut oil soothes sensitive skin and promotes healing.

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