Movember is a global movement that leverages the power of the mustache to promote men's health. Hear from Brian Stork, MD as he shares insight into what Movember means for him and what you need to know.
Brian Stork, MDEvery year, I look forward to participating in Movember. Movember is a global movement that leverages the power of the mustache to promote men's health. Over the years, my reasons for participating have turned out to be very different.
Early on, I thought participating in Movember would be a great way to raise money for men's health.
Over time, I discovered that a mustache could serve as a hook to get men talking about their health. Last year, I learned that Movember could also be a great way to engage with other urologists, from around the world, in conversations about men's health.
Movember has taken on a more personal meaning for me this year. At the beginning of the month, one of my favorite uncles, a farmer, unexpectedly passed away at 63. As I made the drive back to Iowa to be with family, I thought a lot about his life, and my lifestyle.
The 21st century urologist faces an unprecedented number of challenges and stressors. Perhaps, as a result, many of my colleagues tell me they are rapidly becoming burned out.
When I get stressed out, I tend to eat quickly and poorly. As a result, I tend to gain weight. When I gain weight, I don't feel much like exercising, and a downward spiral ensues. Paradoxically, the more I exercise, and the more I move, the less I want to eat – I simply feel better, and the spiral reverses.
Therefore, it's great that, this year, the Movember Foundation has decided to really focus on the benefits of increasing activity through MOVEment.
We need to take care of not only our patients, but also ourselves, and each other. I think, at its core, what Movember is really about is social support.
NEXT: Teaming up, and safety in numbers
You can choose to participate in Movember as an individual, or as a member of a team. Being part of a team is great for social support. It can also help facilitate some friendly competition.
I like to think of it as cooperatition...
Once you've teamed up, you can share pictures and thoughts about your personal Movember experience with Urology Times and include the hastag #Movember.
NEXT: Don't be chicken. It's not too late!
- Urology Times (@UrologyTimes) November 6, 2015
I've heard some of my colleagues complain that they can't grow a mustache or just don't look good. Others tell me their wife hates it when they grow a mustache.
All I can say is, welcome to the club!
Let's put aside our vanity for a few weeks in order to support an organization that helps with men's health research and advocacy all year long.
I hope you will consider participating in Movember this year. If not, please consider donating. Either way, it's a great opportunity to reflect upon your own lifestyle, and what it might mean, long-term, for your health.
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