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What does English, Pencil, Horseshoe, Walrus, Toothbrush and Handlebar have in common?

These are unique styles of moustaches from around the world. I have had my fair share of wearing a Handlebar stache and beard in 2019 and 2020. Oh boy, those were fun times!! It takes a significant amount of grooming and a fair share of beard oils to grow and maintain good facial hair. Back in my home province of Kerala as well as most parts of India, wearing a stache has been traditionally associated with attributes of manliness, pride and virility. Believe it or not - men have been known to wager their moustache when they gamble or place a huge bet, pledging to shave off their stache if they lose. Yikes!! Times have changed and so has the trend of moustaches as metrosexuals are redefining the fashion statement.

In recent years, this strip of facial hair has gained a lot of attention through its association with a health movement called #Movember - which is a portmanteau of moustache and the month of November. Of late, my inbox has been littered with messages seeking my participation in this growing global movement, whose goal is to ‘change the face of men’s health’ by encouraging you to grow a stache from scratch this month and raise awareness of men’s health issues like prostate cancer, testicular cancer and men's suicide. The two common types of cancer to watch out for in men are skin cancer and then prostate cancer. Prostate is a part of the male reproductive system in humans.

On Movember’s website, when I look for facts about Prostate cancer - there is a plethora of information about performing Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) tests at age 50 while also recognizing common signs and symptoms to get tested early. While I applaud the amazing efforts led by the Movember team to raise awareness (and the inspiration for this blog), nevertheless there is a problem that is staring right at our faces!! I find it intriguing that all the data here is about early detection and treating it properly. What about identifying the root cause of the issue? Instead, the million dollar 'rudimentary' question should be - Why does prostate cancer occur in humans? What causes prostate cancer and how can it be prevented?

Though it has been widely attributed to age, race and family history, there are definitely things within your control that can lower your chances of contracting this deadly cancer. There is a high correlation between prostate cancer and lifestyle choices like:

  • Overweight or obese men

  • Diet high in dairy products and calcium

  • Diet high in red meat and processed food

  • Low amounts of physical activity

The research report from ‘The Science of Living Well, Beyond Cancer’ created by Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF), recommends a diet that is comprised of:

  • 70-80% in vegetables especially cruciferous varieties like cabbage, broccoli, bok choy, kale, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. There is a whole paper dedicated towards the benefits of #broccoli (contains the glucoraphanin) in preventing prostate cancer, which can be accessed here.

  • Berries carry a high quantity of antioxidants (anthocyanins) that neutralizes free radicals and reduces the damage to cells and DNA.

  • Lycopene in cooked tomatoes is another antioxidant that fights prostate cancer.

  • 15-20% in protein and fat - preferably plant based, including beans, nuts and certain cold-water fish like salmon, sardines, and trout, since these are known to reduce inflammation.

  • One study, led by Harvard scientists Fred Tabung, Ph.D., M.S.P.H., and Edward Giovannucci, M.D., Sc.D., examined the relationship between diet and inflammation and found that canned tuna, shrimp, lobster, scallops, and “other” fish were more inflammatory than “dark-meat” fish like salmon or red snapper.

  • Negligible to low quantities of sugar, processed meats and carbs

  • Green tea is a good source of antioxidants, but skip the urge to sweeten it with refined sugar.

Check out this awesome periodic 'vege'-table chart created by and also shown below. Complementing these superfoods with a generous dose of physical activity and exercise for at least 30 minutes everyday, is the recipe for being in your ‘PRO’-state of health and preventing prostate cancer.

Lastly, tis’ the season of #Halloween and I decided to get creative with my Halloween costume. For the longest time, I dressed up as Robin every year; not the bird, but Batman’s sidekick. Folks that are familiar with my craziness, know that I am a huge fan of the #DC universe and the Justice League. And yes, Zack Snyder’s Justice League that came out earlier this year was EPIC!!

I am NOT a huge advocate of purchasing new Halloween costumes each year, and adding more waste to the landfill. As guardians of our mothership - Earth, our primary focus should be to REDUCE unnecessary purchases; RECYCLING should be an afterthought. So this year, I got creative and built a DIY Halloween costume from scratch to send a strong message that resonated with one of Neoveda’s many goals to improve the health of Earth’s inhabitants. Are you ready for it?

Yup, I was a ‘CEREAL’ killer this Halloween, designed with the help of my creative genius wife - Suma. I am boldly saying NO to the whole family of processed foods like Fruit Loops, Krispies, Corn Flakes, Wheaties and all that crap, which is nothing but empty nutrition and added sugars. If you want to reap the true benefits of cereals, then eat them whole - in their rawest form. My favorite breakfast is a warm bowl of locally sourced organic rolled oats (not the ones from your supermarket), with raisins, crushed walnuts and a dash of cinnamon powder drizzled with honey. This is so heavenly, and it is such an amazing way to kick start your beautiful day!! If you are curious, I get my organic oats from a local farm in Creston, B.C. and I proudly support local businesses.

Until next time - Eat healthy and read the ingredients on packaged foods to take a bold stance against processed foods. Once there is low demand, the supply will dwindle too. It is a basic rule of micro-economics. I shall end this blog with an inspiring quote from my favorite hero, Batman:

A hero can be anyone, even a man doing something as simple and reassuring as putting a coat on a young boy’s shoulders to let him know that the world hadn't ended.

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