This is National Men's Health Week, an awareness campaign to encourage men to take simple steps to improve their health.
By practically any measure, women are healthier than men. Dr. Luis Diez-Morales, medical director of the Curtis D. Robinson Men's Health Institute at St. Francis Hospital, said there are many reasons why. "We do not like to go and see the doctor," he said. "We don't like to have colonoscopies. We don't like to have a prostate exam. We do not exercise enough; we do not eat healthy; we have a diet that is very high in fat and carbohydrates. We also do not sleep enough."
These poor health habits can be deadly. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on average men die five years earlier than women, often from preventable diseases, like diabetes, heart disease and prostate cancer.
National Men's Health Week was established by Congress 20 years ago to encourage men to adopt a healthier lifestyle, and prevent these illnesses.
St. Francis Hospital's Curtis D. Robinson Men's Health Institute is celebrating Men's Health Week by offering free prostate screenings for uninsured and underinsured men in Hartford through the month of June.