Men are putting on weight- and the diagnosis is grim | Neil Boom

Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom

More men are developing form 2 diabetes. I knew I was at risk, but I required a nudge, writes Neil Boom, managing director of Gresham PR

Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom

Men, be advised. It seems we are not taking very good care of ourselves. Many of us are overweight and we are paying the price with poorer health. Research by charity the Men’s Health Forum detected humen were over 25% more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than females. Shockingly, virtually one in 10 humen are now suffering from this disease.

The research also found that men were more than twice as likely to have a major amputation. Almost 70% of people presenting with a foot ulcer caused by type 2 diabetes are humen. It get grimmer. Untreated, type 2 diabetes kills, and it is now killing proportionately more humen than ever, according to the study.

We can’t ignore the facts that health messages are not getting through to many humen. We are developing problems such as type 2 diabetes through a combination of obesity- apparently the UK is the sixth fattest nation in the world- and a woeful absence of exercising. In March, the NHS’s annual review of obesity said one in four adults in England took less than 30 minutes of moderate exercising a week, compared to the recommended 150 minutes.

Is being overweight abruptly socially acceptable for men? Without the social stigma, is it now OK to be obese? Worryingly, Men’s Health Forum says that more than half of overweight men think their weight is fine.

We are all too familiar with the social pressures on girls and women to be slim( and beautiful ), and how this causes crippling anxiety leading to terrible eating disorder and self-harm. Surely, men can choose a healthy menu that avoids obesity, leading to poor health, without a diet of weight preoccupation leading to sickness?

What the report didn’t reveal was datum relating to men’s ages or social backgrounds. It strikes me the vital missing ingredient is the extent to which our stances to health and weight depend on our friendship groups, ages and jobs. A friend I train with at the gym plays weekly five-a-side football with his mates and says they’re all fit and take their health and fitness seriously. None are overweight.

Most of my friends are middle aged like me. As we have got older, we’ve become much more concerned about our weight and general health and fitness. Still, there’s usually some sort of catalyst before embarking on a weight loss and exercising regime. We all knew and understood the health messages, but needed a spur to action before taking them seriously.

For one, for whom diabetes runs in his family, it was coming last in the daddies’ race at his son’s school athletics day that spurred him to taken any steps. Another friend was prescribed drug for high blood pressure and started to lose weight to help better manage his condition. A friend who freelances for a living said his spur was the need to look youthful and in good physical shape when pitching for projects, in order to radiate vitality and demonstrate capacity to cope with the slog. For another mate, it was simply the approach of a significant birthday, and with it a bit of taking stock.

My catalyst was the kindness of male friends, by which I mean they took the mickey out me for being fat and unfit. In my late 30 s and early 40 s my weight had increased slowly. By my mid-4 0s it had jumped from a lithe 12 stone to a porky 15.5, and was proving no signs of stopping there. Long hours at my desk and client networking concentrated around eating and drinking, combined with little routine exert had caught up with me. A health check at the doctor’s told me I was at risk of kind 2 diabetes.

It was truly the comments from friends that forced me ultimately into to action. One of my more kindly mates remarked that I was a little portly. Others were frankly blunter. Bluster and jokes are fairly typical ways that men get serious phases over, but behind it I could see some genuine concern for my welfare.

I received pleasure in a drastic life change. For eight months, out went all booze, bread, pasta, rice and sugary treats such as chocolate, biscuits and cake. In came working, regular trip-ups to the gym with a personal trainer, smaller food portions and lots more fruit and salads. The weight fell off.

We all agree that media messages promoting us to eat healthily and exert on the whole have gone in. Yet a catalyst is often needed to turn guessed into action.

* Neil Boom is managing director of Gresham PR

Read more: www.theguardian.com

Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom
Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom
Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom
Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom
Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom

Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom

Men Are Putting On Weight- And The Diagnosis Is Grim | Neil Boom

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