Man up and take charge of your health

The University of Southern Queensland (USQ) has teamed up with the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) to promote the importance of men's health.

The push comes during Men's Health Week (June 15-21) which is aimed at encouraging men to tackle preventable health problems head-on.

The University's Social and Behavioural Sciences chair Professor Jeff Dunn AO, also head of PCFA, said it's time men started prioritising their health.

"The COVID-19 pandemic is having a huge impact on lives and livelihoods, and now more than ever, men need to be reminded to get serious about their health," Professor Dunn said.

"I encourage all men to start making their health a top priority, not only for your own wellbeing but to provide a better life for your family and set a good example for your children."

Professor Dunn said there were some simple steps men could take to improve their physical and mental health.

Topping the list is getting a regular medical check-up.

"Having a good understanding of your body and discussing any changes with your GP can lead to early cancer detection, and potentially save your life," Professor Dunn said.

Of particular concern is prostate cancer with 3500 Aussie men dying from the disease each year, making it the second most common cause of male cancer death.

"Every 25 minutes, one of our fathers, brothers, and sons will hear the news he has prostate cancer," Professor Dunn said.

"Men impacted by prostate cancer experience a 70 per cent increased risk of suicide, although few seek support for their mental health needs."

University of Southern Queensland researchers are working on several joint initiatives with PCFA to understand and address disparities in prostate cancer outcomes between regional and metropolitan Australia.

Breakout box opportunity: Top 10 tips for Men's Health

• Talk to your GP• Maintain good sleep habits

• Enjoy daily physical activity

• Eat fruit and vegetables

• Confide in your mates

• All, or most things, in moderation

• Don't smoke

• Start something new

• Know your family medical history

• Laugh often

Men can increase their health by eating more fruit.
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