Why great young dads care about their health

June 12, 2024

MakatiMed shares the common concerns men should watch out for

From holding your baby in your arms for the first time to running after your toddler in the playground, early fatherhood is full of moments that make any young dad feel invincible. This seismic shift in your life motivates you to become a better man. Having your own mini-me or little princess makes you recalibrate your life choices, as a provider and protector of the family, so now you’re chasing promotions or business ventures while ensuring mom and kids are safe and happy. Dude, have you thought about your health lately? 

Joel A. de la Rosa, MD, from the Section of Cardiology of the top hospital in the Philippines Makati Medical Center (MakatiMed) points out that men often have a bad habit of relegating doctor’s appointments to the backburner. “Many robust young men put off going to the doctor until it’s too late. Unlike women who have regular gynecologist visits, men simply aren’t encouraged to see a doctor regularly. But refusing to recognize your current health challenges and your vulnerability to certain conditions can cause bigger health problems that can alter your life,” says Dr. de la Rosa. 

MakatiMed underscores that one common health problem that young men should watch out for is ischemic heart disease or when the heart doesn’t get enough blood and oxygen because of the narrowing or hardening of the arteries. “It is the top killer disease in the Philippines. The risk for this disease begins developing when you’re in your 20s or 30s when most people are also exposed to chronic stress, which can lead to persistent elevation in blood pressure, commonly known as hypertension, damaging arteries, and building plaques,” explains Dr. de la Rosa. 

Young dads should be vigilant against cancers affecting the lungs, liver, colon/rectum, prostate, stomach, and leukemia, as these have emerged as the most prevalent types of diagnosis for Filipino men. “Many of these cancers develop over time because of unhealthy habits like smoking, eating too much processed and fatty foods, and a lack of physical activity,” notes Dr. de la Rosa. 

Type 2 diabetes is another consequence of poor lifestyle choices. “Beware of symptoms like constant thirst, constant urination, fatigue, dizziness, weight loss, and slow-healing wounds, especially for those who eat a lot of refined carbs, sugars, and saturated fat,” cautions Dr. de la Rosa. 

Heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes are serious health conditions that greatly affect one’s quality of life. “These diseases eat up not only your health but also precious time with your family and your resources, too. Fortunately, it’s never too late. You can always start investing in your health today,” highlights Dr. de la Rosa. 

Managing stress, pursuing a healthy life by eating more fruits and vegetables, spending more time working out, as well as taking relevant routine and diagnostic tests, and even spending quality time with the family are some concrete steps young dads can take to improve their wellness. 

“Dads, your kids are counting on you, from diaper changes to school runs to solving math to navigating life. Now, maintaining health is a hallmark of a great, responsible father. So, prioritize your well-being and see a doctor regularly. You owe it to that little baby who made you a better man,” emphasizes Dr. de la Rosa. 

For more information, please contact MakatiMed On-Call at +632.88888 999, email mmc@makatimed.net.ph, or visit www.makatimed.net.ph. Follow @IamMakatiMed on Facebook and Twitter.