June 2, 2015 • read

The Most Important Pledge for Men’s Health in Canada

It’s time to rally Canadian men to get healthy, ‘one click’ at a time.

Last June, the inaugural Canadian Men’s Health Week ignited a nationwide conversation about men’s health issues. Now, with the second instalment less than three weeks away, it’s time to put that talk into action. With broccoli!

Not that there’s been any shortage of action. Among other initiatives, the Canadian Men’s Health Foundation has unveiled the innovative YouCheck.ca health awareness tool and the Don’t Change Much campaign you’re looking at right now, which shows men just how easy and simple it is to improve their health.

That’s why the main goal of CMHW 2015, from June 15 to 21, is for men across Canada to commit to simple lifestyle changes that can help them feel better and live healthier lives. One click or tap at Canadianmenshealthweek.ca is all it takes to make a pledge to take the stairs instead of the escalator; choose salad as a side dish; ask, “Does it come in whole wheat?”; get off the bus one stop earlier; and, yes, eat more broccoli!

Prominent men’s health Champions are going one step further. Simon Whitfield, Trevor Linden, Adam Kreek, Shea Emry, Alain Vigneault, Jim Hughson, and Ned Bell are sharing selfie videos of their own pledges.

The lifestyle changes may not sound all that taxing, but that’s the point. By sharing the tongue-in-cheek clips – and encouraging other men to do the same via the #MensHealthWeek hashtag – the Champions are showing how simple and painless it is to make healthy choices. Men can even call on their own friends and family, Ice Bucket Challenge style, to embrace stairs, short strolls and salads.

Another goal: Sparking even more conversations about men’s health, a serious issue that gets overlooked all too often. “We want guys to think about their lifestyle,” says Trevor “Captain Canuck” Linden, a 20-year NHL veteran. “By making some small changes now, they can have better health for themselves and for the people who count on them.”

CMHF champions take the Canadian Men's Health Week Pledge

I am committed, and this is my pledge:

As men of Canada we vow to care about our health.
Today is the day
To take the stairs instead of the escalator
Choose salad as my side
Ask, “does it come in whole wheat?”
Get off my bus, one stop earlier
And eat more broccoli!

Today I join thousands of other Canadian men in taking The Pledge
so I can be a healthier husband, father, son and friend.

Canadian Men’s Health Week Take The Pledge

The changes may be small, but the stakes are enormous: Men are 79% more likely to die from heart disease and 57% more likely to die from diabetes. They are 29% more likely to be diagnosed with cancer and 40% more likely to die as a result. Many of these problems are caused by the choices men make. They are 24% less likely than women to have visited a doctor within the past year, 67% of Canadian men are overweight or obese, and 85% of them exceed their daily recommended sodium intake. In the end, all these choices add up: Men on average have more than nine years of unhealthy life, most of which is preventable.

“A lot of guys are so busy taking care of their kids, their careers, and their partners that they forget to take care of their own health,” says two-time Olympic gold medalist Simon Whitfield. “We want guys to make some small changes to improve their health, for the people around them and for themselves.”

Broccoli, your time has come!

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