June is National Men’s Health Month. Just as with women’s health, men’s health problems have an impact on wives, mothers, daughters and sisters; often times becoming a family matter. On the gender differences between men and women when it comes to health related issues, here are how both genders compare:
- Alcohol – Women tend to have higher blood alcohol than men after consuming the same amount of alcohol; even when size differences are considered. This is because women produce less of the gastric enzyme that breaks down ethanol in the stomach.
- Heart Disease – Heart disease kills over 50,000 more women than men, and on average strikes 10 years later than men. Women are also more likely to have a second heart attack within a year of the first one. For more information on the differences between men and women in regards to heart disease, check out the summary of women and heart disease here.
- Depression – Women are two-to-three times more likely than men to suffer from depression in part because women’s brains make less of the hormone serotonin. Learn more about the differences between men and women when we hit the blues here.
- Osteoporosis – Women comprise 80% of the population suffering from osteoporosis, which is attributable to a higher rate of lost bone mass due to estrogen loss during menopause. Learn about the common questions about Osteoporosis in the article the La Jolla Light wrote about our last luncheon: “Bone up: What you need to know about Osteoporosis in 2015”.
- Smoking – Smoking has a more negative effect on cardiovascular health in women than men. Women are also less successful quitting smoking and have more severe withdrawal symptoms.
- STDs – Women are two times more likely than men to contract a sexually transmitted disease, and more likely to experience significant drops in body weight.
- Anesthesia – Women tend to wake up from anesthesia more quickly than men — an average of seven minutes for women and 11 minutes for men.
- Drug reactions – Even common drugs like antihistamines and antibiotic drugs can cause different reactions and side effects in women and men.
- Autoimmune Disease – Three out of four people suffering from autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus, are women.
- Pain – Some pain medications (known as kappa-opiates) are far more effective in relieving pain in women than in men.
Check yourself before you wreck yourself!
As with all issues regarding health, being proactive means taking charge of our health. From the Men’s Health Network, a summary of actions to take to keep the men in your life healthy. In honor of Men’s Health Month, encourage the men in your life to get themselves checked regularly.
About the Doris A. Howell Foundation:
The Doris A. Howell Foundation for Women’s Health Research is committed to keeping the women we love healthy, advancing women’s health through research and educating women to be catalysts for improving family health in the community.
The organization does so by funding scholarships to scientists researching issues affecting women’s health; providing a forum for medical experts, scientists, doctors, researchers, and authors to convey the timely information on topics relevant to women’s health and the health of their families through its Lecture and Evening Series, and by funding research initiatives that will create women’s health awareness and advocacy in the community.
Checklist by Men’s Health Network
Differences between men’s and women’s health: Office of Women’s Health Research.