Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

By Abdullahi Yussuf, 18, Young Speaker of Hackney

10-16 June 2019 is International Men’s Health Week. So i felt it was important to emphasise the significance of staying healthy, as a man; both young and old. And how we can support one another during Men’s Health Week and beyond.

What i love the most about Men’s Health Week is that we can open up the discussion and highlight issues, which is the first step to solving them. Living with a disability helps me measure how i stay healthy and makes this particular topic very close to my heart.

I recently interviewed a very good friend of mine (Joey) about why it is vital for men to stay healthy. Speaking to Joey showed me that doing small things to keep our body and mind stable is a key factor in living a longer life. Joey said:

“Men’s Health Week is a week of acknowledgement that we all have issues and instead of hiding these things away; I think it’s about embracing these issues, fixing them and making these issues socially acceptable. As men we are known for not being good at expressing our emotions and this creates a stigma towards men’s health issues. This week is a great opportunity to help stop the stigma.”

I also asked Joey what he personally does to keep healthy, he said:

“I always try to engage in things that lead to good health – exercise, eating very well, sleeping very well, also social support; friendship, laughter (good humour). A healthy mind is a happy mind and this is universal”

I completely agree with Joey, it is entirely acceptable and healthy to express our emotions as men. And i think it is important to support young men in particular, to be more courageous in talking about their health issues. There are physiological steps which can also help with this:

  1. Identifying the problem – (Figuring out what the problem is, are you feeling stressed? Depressed or anxious? Lonely? Do you feel tired? Or concerned about your body?)
  2. Understanding the problem – (What does this mean? Research more so you can understand how you are feeling)
  3. Creating a strategy – (How are you going to get better? Talks to someone you trust and create a plan to help you feel better)
  4. Organising information – (All this new information you’ve learnt about yourself, write it down and stick it up. So you can understand it better everyday)
  5. Monitoring progress – (Track how well you’re doing, write down in a calendar how you are feeling day by day and watch as your health improves!)

Last year’s Men’s Health Forum looked at diabetes in men – an illness that has become more evident in men than women and can create more problems in male bodies than female bodies. Issues like this are why Men’s Health Week is so important.

Keeping our mind and body healthy helps prevent other conditions and illnesses such as high blood pressure, depression and even strokes. We have to pay more attention to our lifestyle and be cautious of what we put inside our body and mind.

‘Limiting the intake of things like salt to 1,500 milligrams will help your body more than you think.’

If we want to live a long happy life  we have to constantly let our body and mind participate in healthy things.

If you are a man that desires to do more or a woman that desires to enlighten a man that you care about , then please don’t hesitate to start spreading the word!

The more Men’s Health Week becomes well-known to society, the more men will feel that it’s totally OK to not only talk about their health issues; but to also know that the world is here to support them – all humankind have to come together to support one another.

This will help men of all ages to stop from hiding their health issues and encourage them to be open.

Want to know more about Men’s Health Week and how you can support in celebrating and spreading awareness ? Visit here to get more info.

Also if you want to get involved in Men’s Health Week, regardless of your gender, you can sign up to the Men’s Health Forum site, and donate to the charity. The charity also has an online shop which sells products that offers great support and advice to men about their health.