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Women More Likely To Practice Preventive Medicine

By HERWriter
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Dr. David Katz has published more than 100 scientific papers, as well as textbook chapters, and has written close to a thousand newspaper columns. He has published 12 books. He is a health columnist for the New York Times Syndicate.
Dr. Katz was recognized twice by the Consumers Research Council of America as a top physician in the U.S. in Preventive Medicine.
Dr. Katz received a nomination for the position of U.S. Surgeon General in 2009.

Dr. Katz:
I am an internist and a preventive medicine specialist. I did sequential residencies, trained in both, and in preventive medicine we are trying to do just what the name suggests -- prevent disease -- pretty much a hopeless task with men. Right, I mean, men are just thick-skulled and when they don’t feel well, maybe they will see you.

They will see you after they have had their heart attack and after they have had their stroke and after they have been diagnosed with their cancer, which is terribly disheartening. There’s only so many times you can see that before you really get discouraged and think, you know, I am putting out fires and these fires never, I know exactly how to prevent these fires from getting started in the first place, if only I can get through to these people.

Women are much more sensible. So, the whole emphasis of preventive medicine, a proactive approach, taking the long view, thinking about taking good care of yourself when you feel fine so you continue to feel fine, building health in other people such as your children. Women are the Chief Medical Officers of the family and I think, occasionally you’ll find men who have that mentality, but by and large, we really do count on women to motivate their families to engage in health, and I guess that’s okay, you know, if that’s a role women are willing to play.

Married men live longer; it’s not true of married women. Married men have a woman who is, you know, looking after their health, making them go to the doctor, making them do some of the stuff. So as long as women are willing to contribute to our well-being, I guess we could just say thank you.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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