Men’s International Health Day — stay alert and healthy!

November 19th is International Men’s Health Day reminding men to keep healthy, among other things special focus on heart 💜 health, skin health, and checking for testicular or colon cancers (talk with your doctor or paediatrician— yes testicular issues can happen with teens too!). Let’ normalise our body for better health….. it seems that our media alters our perception about being ‘perfect’ and so this post is dedicated to the many males that have told me about their health and sexuality issues, in my attempt to help them continue to ask questions and seek professional advice. Furthermore, I was sent this ‘talisman’ from an archaeologist friend to prompt interest in this area… after all ‘sex sells’ as they say. A 2022 article in Men’s Health focused on the Best and Worst Cities for Longevity but one may not be able to afford good food, have little time to exercise, and their immediate environment may be dirty, have toxins and in essence be hazardous for their health. Hopefully history can help us learn more, and continue to increase our health literacy.


1) The talisman of the phallus for “good luck and fertility/ health” from Roman times, gives historical context of the importance to men and women. Interestingly around the globe (except in Greece) there are temples dedicated to Priapus however he was banned from Olympus, perhaps there was a reason? Aphrodite (‘Venus’) in the statue found in the Archaeological Museum in Athens shows amusement but is ready to ‘strike’ with her sandal a very ‘eager’ Pan, while Eros holds him back…..

2) The statue of Don Quixote (Quichote) and and his trusted companion sidekick is his squire Sancho Panza found in Madrid, Spain.

  • Sancho Panza is a short, pot-bellied peasant (reminding men to keep healthy and share their problems with smart witty friends!)
  • Don Quixote of La Mancha was published by Miguel Cervantes in 1600s and considered a worldwide classic!

Freud talks about ‘penis envy’ but one could argue there is also ‘vagina envy’ and it seems more men like to cross-dress than women do, so that says something. Furthermore, since it comes up ⬆️ often in discussions (pun intended)…we thought to share about the “obsession with the penis” — read more in Science Direct article by K. Wylie published in 2008. There is also a very extensive blog post about “the Phallus in Ancient Greece” making the point that many ancient cultures revered it as a symbol of health and fertility. Beyond this, I published in 2006 about AIDS research 🧐 but we are still dealing with an endemic situation… Good to stay alert 🚨 and be safe.

Pomegranate and Autumn 🍂 comforts

Autumn is here and we are loving the rain and cooler days. For many world regions floodwater has destroyed property and land a bit apocalyptic for some; flooding is concerning due to continued climate change.

Time for the Earth to bare her last fruit/veggies as she, like us ”takes a rest”. Fall or Autumn (from the Latin autumnus) reminds us of the year passing, as we take out out warm sweaters and comfort foods.

What is your Fall Season “comfort food”? Perhaps a morning oatmeal with a bit of maple syrup reminding you of the colors and the beauty of autumn.

In times of “low energy“ it’s to your benefit to add some extra vitamins with pumpkin seeds, cranberries, some goji berries … good and extra yummy!

Wikipedia defines comfort food as something of nostalgic nature from our childhood usually that makes us feel “cared for” and indeed a hot breakfast around cold Fall and winter days makes us feel better. A reminder that “all that falls” could be your mood and a bit of seasonal depression so do something, be active, put on that warm cuddly sweater and make something good for yourself !

Breakfast, the most important part of your day so start your day with energy!

Demeter, goddess of agriculture, harvest and fertility, is a reminder of seasonal changes, human bounty, and potential loss. Gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece mirrored human nature, one may say as a mother she surely felt a great emptiness when her daughter Persephone was lured by Hades into the underworld disappearing from beloved earth grounds. Hades, a dark figure (may be something like a modern Darth Vader) convinces the kind-hearted Persephone to fall for him offering her a pomegranate.

By eating a few seeds she consummates this relationship so that even the great leader-god Zeus could not intervene, thus Persephone travels to Hades part of the year, and as she re-emerges her mother, Demeter brings flowers and the budding of Spring —  a beautiful myth!

Writers talk about the necessity of change, darkness being a necessary part of our healing (Thomas Moore “Dark Nights of the Soul”).

The continued pagan tradition of the pomegranate, a bittersweet food of seeds or squeezed into juice, rich in vitamin C and anti-inflammatory properties, is added with barley / bulgar wheat, to commemorate death of loved ones as part of the memorial services of several Eastern Orthodox traditions (called “kolyva” κόλλυβα).

There’s a great list of benefits including helping weight loss indicated in a popular fitness magazine, Shape (pomegranate info).

There are the RED types

Fall healthy eating tips:

  • Eat more pumpkin, lotus, and any beta carotene rich vegetables and fruit
  • Pair your leftover Halloween 🎃 candy w/ some Omega rich nuts !
  • Take a walk in the woods and gather some chestnuts ? Remember 20 mins a day, walk briskly.
  • Remember increasing your help knowledge helps build health literacy.
  • Teach future generations what you have learned…be thankful for the extra knowledge!

As we close with Eric Clapton’s Autumn, I came across this great quote in thinking of winter and your relationships — “cleaning house”: