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).


67% of men are overweight or obese.


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


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.


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)

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