It has long been known that women have a higher life expectancy than men. There is a wide range of internal, external, and behavioral factors that support that fact, but it can be attributed to a broad range of conditions as well. Specifically, studies indicate that men have higher relative death rates from heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, liver disease, kidney disease, pneumonia, and accidents resulting in a fatality.
Jeff Hogrefe, R.Ph., AFAARM, of the Integrative Hormone Center has made it a lifelong goal to help men from all walks of life achieve greater longevity, providing them with professional medical guidance and the tools needed to live a happy and healthy life! We know men are predisposed to certain conditions, so preventative steps should be taken to mitigate health concerns!
5 Lifestyle Changes for Increase Longevity
Longevity isn’t a one-time fix and it doesn’t happen overnight. It is the culmination of a series of choices that pay off in the long run. It is the commitment that a person needs to make on a consistent basis for the betterment of their health! As mentioned above, we know what conditions and mortalities that men most commonly suffer from. Using that information,
Jeff Hogrefe utilizes the patient-first, comprehensive approach of functional medicine to assess the patient and everything that makes you unique. Once a health profile has been created, it can be better understood what needs to be done to provide the most substantial boost to your longevity. Some of the most fundamental and critical aspects of living a long, healthy life are as follows:
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
Having a diet that your body responds well to is incredibly important, as is balance. This usually means adapting your diet to include more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, beans, and legumes, which are known to be healthy, nutritious and provide lasting benefits like staving off chronic conditions. It can also impact reproductive health and providing a boost to male fertility. Longevity studies suggest that managing insulin resistance is key to extending life.
- Intermittent fasting,
- Eating 30% less than what we are used to
- Keeping total carbs to about 50 grams per day.
- Restricting animal proteins (eating meat 2 times weekly only)
- focusing on a plant-based diet and fiber intake
2. Stay Active
Prolonged periods of inactivity or living a sedentary lifestyle pose an incredibly detrimental threat to male longevity. If you are seated more often than you are standing and moving, you are at a much higher risk of weight gain, diabetes, and high triglyceride levels. Some tips to increase your activity throughout the day include routine movement breaks, going for walks whenever possible. With regards to lifestyle choices, sacrificing one 30 minute episode of TV for moderate/intense exercise can help ward off chronic heart disease, improve respiratory and circulatory function, as well as improve sexual performance!
Studies indicate that short term burst activity called interval training is best for increasing the resiliency of cells. 20 minutes per day of alternating between walking and full sprints is the most successful strategy for longevity
3. Stress Management
Stress is a very serious threat to the health and wellbeing of men. Whereas women often engage in many more stress-relieving activities or cathartic expression, men frequently suppress or hide their stress. This inability to unwind and let go leads to constantly high-stress hormones, triggers inflammation, and is associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Stress also encourages other unhealthy lifestyle choices such as eating junk foods, alcoholism, or smoking. Finding ways to manage your stress is a key part of staying healthy. You can read our full article on stress management here!
4. Healthy Social Relationships
Loneliness and social isolation can affect your overall health and wellness and actually increase your risk of all-cause mortality. Humans are inherently social and whether we are aware of it or not, our health is directly related to social and romantic relationships. Extended periods of loneliness has been linked to an increased risk for depression, heart disease, ultimately decreasing longevity. Men tend to suppress feelings and isolate themselves when they feel down instead of seeking support from those around them. Having a supportive circle of friends, open communication with your partner or strong family ties can have a profoundly positive effect on your health.
5. Adequate Sleep
Sleep is one of the most fundamental aspects of a healthy lifestyle and not getting enough can actually shorten your lifespan. Giving your body and mind the chance to recharge enables you to take on life’s challenges. It is recommended that you get between 7 and 8 hours of sleep each night in order to reap all the benefits. Sleep deprivation takes an incredibly serious toll on your body and mind, and can even be deadly if you push your limits. Men often make the habit of sacrificing sleep for other priorities, and while this is okay occasionally, over time you will begin to feel as though you can’t catch up, your metabolism will suffer, increased mood swings, as well as compromise your immune system leaving you more prone to illness. Good sleep is vital as growth hormone is released during sleep.. Growth hormone is vital for cell recovery and repair as well as cell resiliency
Functional Medicine is the Answer to Male Longevity!
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, longevity is all about a consolidated effort of making healthy choices on a consistent basis. Book a functional medicine consultation with Jeff Hogrefe, R.Ph., AFAARM at the Integrated Hormone Center during which he will outline parts of your lifestyle that if changed, can help you work toward a longer, happier, healthier life! Call our office or book a consultation online today!