The scale of the challenge

MEN'S HEALTH MANIFESTO: one in five men dies before the age of 65

Premature death

On average, more than one in five men is still dying between the ages 16 and 65, and more than two in five before the age of 75 – with death rates amongst men in the poorest areas of the country being even worse.

Heart disease and cancer

  • Men are still more likely to die of circulatory disease and cancer.
  • 75% of premature deaths from coronary heart disease are male.
  • Men have a 37% higher risk of dying from cancer and a 67% higher chance of dying from cancers that affect both men and women (Excluding breast cancer and those cancers that affect either women only or men only).

Obesity

67% of men are overweight or obese.

Diabetes

Middle-aged men are twice as likely to have diabetes as women – and twice as likely not to know they have diabetes.

Suicide

Four in five suicides are by men – suicide is the biggest cause of death for men under 35 and there has been a sharp increase in the rate among men aged 35-64.

Lifestyle

Men are more likely than women to:

  • smoke, smoke more cigarettes per day and smoke hand-rolled tobacco
  • eat too much salt
  • eat too much red and processed meat
  • eat too little fruit and too few vegetables
  • drink alcohol and drink at hazardous levels. Men are twice as likely to have liver disease.

Men's Health Manifesto (PDF, 263kb)

> Next section: Face up to reality

The Men’s Health Forum need your support

It’s tough for men to ask for help but if you don’t ask when you need it, things generally only get worse. So we’re asking.

In the UK, one man in five dies before the age of 65. If we had health policies and services that better reflected the needs of the whole population, it might not be like that. But it is. Policies and services and indeed men have been like this for a long time and they don’t change overnight just because we want them to.

It’s true that the UK’s men don’t have it bad compared to some other groups. We’re not asking you to ‘feel sorry’ for men or put them first. We’re talking here about something more complicated, something that falls outside the traditional charity fund-raising model of ‘doing something for those less fortunate than ourselves’. That model raises money but it seldom changes much. We’re talking about changing the way we look at the world. There is nothing inevitable about premature male death. Services accessible to all, a population better informed. These would benefit everyone - rich and poor, young and old, male and female - and that’s what we’re campaigning for.

We’re not asking you to look at images of pity, we’re just asking you to look around at the society you live in, at the men you know and at the families with sons, fathers and grandads missing.

Here’s our fund-raising page - please chip in if you can.