November is in full swing, and by the time this post is published, you'll probably have noticed some scraggly moustaches sprouting on upper lips near you.
This year, Movember Canada is challenging us to "use the power of the moustache to create conversations about men's health." I love chitchatting as much as the next person, but when it comes to a subject as important as prostate cancer, talk just isn't enough. We all know how important men's health is already, right?
So let's do something about it!
1. Let's Clean Up Our Act
Men: Do you know what chemicals are lurking in your aftershave? According to the Environmental Working Group, the average man uses 6 personal care products a day with 85 unique ingredients. Not quite as bad as the average woman who clocks in at 12 products containing 168 different ingredients daily, but still, there's room for improvement here... especially since these chemicals can be so dangerous:
"Some ingredients are hormonally active; some of these are specifically linked to male reproductive system disorders. For instance, phthalates have been associated with altered hormone levels in men and boys and sperm damage." - Environmental Working Group
Luckily, EWG has compiled some tips to help men avoid these nasty ingredients. When buying aftershave and shaving cream, two top offenders, try to avoid the following:
- “Fragrance” -- can contain hormone disruptors and are among the top 5 allergens in the world.
- Oxybenzone -- Studies on cells and laboratory animals indicate that oxybenzone and its metabolites may disrupt the hormone system.
- PEG/ceteareth/polyethylene -- These synthetic chemicals are frequently contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which the U.S. government considers a probable human carcinogen and which readily penetrates the skin.
- Parabens -- Parabens are estrogen-mimicking preservatives used widely in cosmetics.
- DMDM hydantoin -- Cosmetics preservatives that form formaldehyde to kill bacteria growing in products. Formaldehyde is a known human carcinogen.
- Triclosan -- Triclosan disrupts thyroid function and reproductive hormones.
Scary stuff, right? Let's keep that nonsense out of men's personal care products and out of their bodies.
- Read this report from Canada's own Environmental Defence: The Manscape: The Dirt on Toxic Ingredients in Men’s Body Care Products
- And then watch the video here on how Gillette poisons your pits.
2. Let's Get Cooking
Say it with me: Learning how to cook is so, so, so important for our health. In fact, a recent study found a link between time spent at home cooking and overall diet health. (File that one under O for Obvious, am I right?) When we know how to cook, we know what's going into our food. And that should be nothing but whole, natural ingredients and sweet, sweet love -- no carcinogens allowed up in here.
So, most beloved gentlemen: If you haven't already, it's time to learn your way around the kitchen. These recipes are both easy peasy and delicious enough to please even the most poutine-powered MoBro.
- Health and Vitality (Not to Mention Virility) Smoothie
- Long Weekend French Toast
- Spring Quiche
- Chocolate Pancakes
- LLT Sandwich
- Pad Thai Rice Wraps
- Egg Salad on Incredible Hulk Quinoa Bread
- Spicy Sweet Potato and Refried Bean Burrito
- Hold-The-Anchovies Caesar Salad
- Tempeh Testicles
- Beaneriffic Chili
- Thai Green Curry
- Create-Your-Own-Burger Adventure
- BBQ Tempeh Kebabs
- No Meat No Potato Shepherd's Pie
3. Let's Get Empowered: Gamechanging Resources
Reducing the chemical load our men are carrying and getting them cooking up healthy goodness may seem like small steps, but trust me -- they're big ones. These resources can help level up those changes and turn them into a full-on healthy lifestyle makeover.
- Quitting That Nasty Habit: 5 Strategies to Make It Happen
- Meet My Dad: The Four Unwanted Words
- Food Irradiation: 5 Things You Need to Know
- 4 Ways to Get Better Sleep
- Understanding Your Blood Test Results
- The Hot Dog Decoded
- The Healing Power of a Positive Mind and Good Energy