If you ask someone about the most likely causes of death for men, they will probably be able to rattle off a few of the main causes, but a few of the true causes are surprising. Here is a list of the leading causes of death; the good news is that you can prevent or at least reduce the risk of many of these problems by adopting a safer, healthier lifestyle.

1. Heart Disease. Over twenty-seven percent of all men will die from heart disease. That’s more than one in four men. They can reduce their risk of heart attacks by eating foods that are lower in bad fats and cholesterols, exercising regularly, managing their weight, and drinking and smoking less.

2. Cancer. Most of us are well aware of what a dangerous killer cancer is. The good news is that most cancers can be controlled and go into remission if detected early. That’s why it’s so important that men see a doctor for a regular physical and prostate exam. The earlier cancer is detected, the better the chance of survival. Quitting smoking will also greatly reduce the chances of developing cancer.

3. Unintentional Injuries. This is one cause of death that surprises most people. Many men don’t think twice before getting in their car or climbing a ladder. It’s very important to be cautious when doing any dangerous activity, even if it seems common and trivial.

4. Stroke. While stroke is much less likely than heart disease, they share many of the same risk factors. While they often require very different treatments if a doctor finds a problem, the same preventative measures can be taken to reduce your risk.

5. Chronic Lower Respiratory Diseases. While this constitutes a number of diseases, most of them are caused or worsened by smoking. If you are a smoker, there are a variety of new resources and medications available to help you quit.

6. Diabetes. While diabetes is a terrible disease, it is preventable in many cases. While some people will develop diabetes no matter what their diet or level of physical activity, most people can control or even prevent diabetes altogether by eating a lower fat, lower sugar diet and getting regular exercise.

7. Influenza and Pneumonia. While influenza and respiratory infections are inconveniences for younger people, they can be much more devastating for seniors. That’s why it’s very important to get a flu shot every year as you get older. You should also go to a doctor if a cough persists more than a few days.

8. Suicide. This is something that is much more commonly associated with women, but men get depression as well. While women are more likely to attempt suicide, men are much more likely to succeed because of the methods they choose. That’s why it’s important never to overlook the signs of depression and to find your loved ones help if you think there’s a problem.

9. Kidney Disease. The major causes of kidney disease are diabetes and high blood pressure. You can lower your risk by controlling your weight, avoiding processed sugars, getting regular exercise, and limiting your salt intake.

10. Alzheimer’s Disease. While this disease gets a lot of attention in the media, it only accounts for 1.6% of deaths in men. While there is currently no cure, there are drugs that can slow the progression if it is caught early. Doctors also think the progression and onset can be slowed by keeping your mind active by reading and doing stimulating activities like crossword puzzles.

While no one can live forever, taking some small steps to live healthier may significantly extend your life.

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