If there’s one thing men don’t like doing, it’s going to the doctor.
But now the doctor is coming to them, with the Men’s Health Education Rural Van (MERV) open for free health tests in Griffith this Friday and Saturday between 10am and 4pm outside the Visitors Centre.
The purpose-built caravan with two consulting rooms that will tour 56 centres in NSW between August 2017 and May 2018. It has a full-time registered nurse, Nicole Page, who with the assistance of local community nurses, will conduct the tests among rural men.
Ms Page’s health check includes a review of blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol levels. A comprehensive discussion about men's health issues follows this review, and health education is provided on an extensive number of men’s health topics.
The main aim of the project, which is also to supported by the Royal Freemasons' Benevolent Institution and the NSW Government, is to increase and promote the awareness of men's health through regular workplace and community visits.
Health checks and health promotion will be used over a twelve month period, having commenced in June 2005 and continue in the following years.
The Area News caught up with Ms Page on Monday and she offered three tips to improve male health in rural communities.
There is a need to see a doctor before you get sick
Ms Page said men, in general, always have excuses not to go the doctor, such as being too busy at work.
As a result, they tend to only go when they get really sick – by which time it’s too late.
But going for a check up to get your baselines done can prevent a lot of serious illnesses.
Have breakfast like a king, dine like a pauper
Ms Page said many men in busy jobs often skip meals during the day, then stuff themselves when they get home at night.
This a very unhealthy, and Ms Page says the old saying of “have breakfast like a king, dine like a pauper” is much better to ensure healthy digestion and avoid weight gain.
Limit red meat consumption
Ms Page said a lot of men in rural areas are brought up on a diet of eating red meat seven times a week.
But red meat takes much longer to break down in our system, and excessive consumption can increase the risk of bowel cancer.
Ms Page said it’s best to limit red meat eating to two or three times a week.
The MERV will move on to Leeton on 8 and 9 November and Narrandera 11 and 12 November.
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