Laura Esparza, a project coordinator at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, designs and implements community interventions focused on underserved populations and has advice on how to get Latino dads to the doctor or at least lead a healthier lifestyle.
She told NBC Latino what health challenges affect Latino dads most, what to do to get them to stay healthy as long as possible, and how to get them to the doctor when needed.
“The biggest challenges are obesity and chronic disease such as, cancer, diabetes, and heart disease,” said Esparza. “A third of all cancers are related to inactivity and poor nutrition, and obesity…It’s an emerging problem…Two thirds of Americans are either overweight or obese – the highest it’s ever been.”
Here are some of her tips for getting Papi to the doctor or, failing that, make him lead a healthier lifestyle:
- Limit alcohol to no more than two drinks a day.
- Participate in physical activity – 2.5 hours a week/30 minutes a day.
- Have a conversation, not concentrating on what he’s failed to do, but what he could do to stay healthy for his family. Timing is everything.
- Food – the quickest route to failure – completely changing his plate is not very successful. Gradually add more healthy foods to the plate. Think small steps.
- If he likes to grill, instead of meat, throw on some veggies and fruits. Come up with a menu. Make it really easy.
Photo (c) Stock Xchng