Category Archives: Health

Health related information.

Check out my new venture!

Good day all!  Today, I want to share some exciting news with you. For some of you who have been down with MANE MAN from day one, you may remember that this whole site started as a personal journey after I grew out my afro for the first time in grad school years ago. I was interested in learning about how to best care for my new fro and it was an exciting time. Over the years, I’m proud to see what MANE MAN has become.  This has also allowed me to continue to divide my time and energy on some other pursuits!

You may not know that I’m very passionate about mental health issues and work professionally as a counselor. My mission is to provide services to underserved communities and improve access and reduce stigma for all people but particularly people of color and LGBTQ communities. I’ve slowly been building my practice as a therapist over the past few years and I’m happy to finally share with you that my practice has a new home at jorelcaraballo.com!

This doesn’t mean that MANE MAN is ending by any means and I plan to keep updating the site regularly with reviews, sponsorships and other stories that I think you all might be interested in reading. But now you can connect with me about all things related to mental health at my new site and social media accounts.

If you’re interested in learning more about my practice in counseling (online and/or in person), please visit my website at jorelcaraballo.com.  And if you’re interested in learning more about the online services I provide and want to learn a little bit more first, you can check out my post, “What is online counseling?” before you begin a free consultation with me.

I also have a blog there where I focus on the topics and intersections between race, gender and sexuality, and mental health. You will find everything from practical tips to opinion pieces and all sorts of things in between.

Please join me on social media for all things related to mental health and wellness at the following:

Twitter: @JorElCaraballo

Facebook: Facebook.com/jorel.caraballo

Pinterest:  pinterest.com/jcaraballolmhc

3 Ways to Support Movember

MG813 Movember 2014 Primary Logo Type - Stacked - Tangerine

Instead of sharing some of my latest viral obsessions this week, I thought I’d share a little bit about Movember!

Determined to “change the face of men’s health”, Movember was started in Australia to help bring awareness to men’s health issues and help encourage men to get much-needed healthcare.   Every November men across the world grow moustaches, beards and goatees in solidarity to spread the word about men’s health initiatives.

Since its inception, almost $600 million dollars have been raised for men’s health research and treatment for conditions such as prostate cancer and mental health issues.

If you aren’t sure how to support the movement here are three ways to get in on the fun this Movember:

1. Start your own fundraising page.
If you’re feeling particularly drawn and committed to the cause of men’s health, you can head over to us.movember.com to create your own personal fundraising page that you can link to your social media accounts. Grow your own facial hair in solidarity, or if you’re a member of the fairer sex you can start a fundraising page as a “Mo Sista” to show your support.

2. Spread the word.
If you’re unable to donate financially then donate your time and influence! You can share this blog post on social media to let your networks know that you take men’s health seriously.

3. Party it up!
At the end of every Movember the organization hosts these fun, and often hilarious, Gala Partés across the globe. If you’re near a major city they are pretty easy to find. Just make sure you have a pretty epic Movember costume handy.  You may even win a prize!

What’s in a Book: Mascupathy

mascupathy-book-cover

Written by two psychotherapists, Mascupathy: Understanding and Healing the Malaise of American Manhood is a deep look into the modern male psyche.

If you’re an academic and interested in masculinity and gender studies, chances are Mascupathy is a book that you’re definitely going to be interested in.  In our current U.S. culture we see the ways in which men have difficulty navigating the world, whether it’s an inability to express ourselves without violence or finding new ways to excel at work, there are definitely challenges we all face on a day-to-day basis.  This is precisely what makes Mascupathy relevant as a book.  What if this perspective could have helped prevent violence if addressed early enough?

What I like about Mascupathy is that it views some of these difficulties, not as inherent character flaws, but more as an effect of socialization and environmental feedback.  Modern masculinity is challenging at times and I would venture to say that all of us at some point experience difficulty navigating the waters.  But, authors Charlie Donaldson and Randy Flood have no interest in making men out to be bad guys and recognize that difficulties exist on a continuum.  And better yet, they do provide insight into how we can be more responsible men in in modern times.

The book lands at 158 pages but certainly packs a hefty punch at only $14.95.  You can learn more about what authors Charlie Donaldson and Randy Flood think about mascupathy at their website for the Institute for the Prevention & Treatment of Mascupathy at www.mascupathy.org.

Disclosure: A review copy of Mascupathy: Understanding and Healing the Malaise of American Manhood was provided courtesy of the authors and Wilks Communications.

Product Review: 2-Day Detox by HERBTHEORY

2-Day DetoxSince I started this blog a few years ago, I’ve become increasingly more conscious about the things I put into my body even if I don’t always follow the rules, per se.  With that, I have begun experimenting with different nutrition standards and supplements that promise a healthier, and sometimes more energetic, daily life. Today I’m sharing my experience with 2-Day Detox by HERBTHEORY.

Designed to support “optimal energy” and provide a “gentle and effective detox”, the 2-Day Detox is a part of HERBTHEORY’s Boost Series of products aimed at helping people get their best out of every day experience.

I have been using the 2-Day Detox for a few weeks now and I there does seem to be some truth to the product’s claims. Largely powered by Mangosteen and Aloe Vera Extracts, the 2-Day Detox definitely helps support intestinal health gently.  Without providing too much information,  I will say that the detox helped clear out my system in a very comfortable and non-alarming way.  To be honest, after the first trial I realized a change in my bathroom behavior and totally forgot that it was due to the detox’s effects.  Gentle and effective? You bet.

The detox also promises “optimal energy” which I mentioned briefly earlier, but I have to say I never noticed any discernible change in my energy levels while on the detox.  Perhaps I wasn’t mindful enough to monitor changes, who knows.  Unfortunately, I can’t say that I felt any real difference.  And if you’re anything like me, you would absolutely notice any sudden boost in your energy levels throughout the day, right?!

All in all, HERBTHEORY presented me with the opportunity to rid my body of unnecessary toxins in a safe and gentle way.  I definitely had a pleasant experience.  The product is non-GMO, vegan and gluten free making it pretty much as natural and healthy as it gets.  I haven’t used all of my stash just yet, but I feel comfortable trying the detox again whenever I feel my system needs a little restart.  The product sells for $21.95 for 60 capsules at Herbtheory.com.

Disclosure: Product for review was provided courtesy of HERBTHEORY, however all opinions expressed herein are solely mine and mine alone.

Q&A with Stuntman Bobby Holland Hanton with Dove Men+Care Review

Stunt performer Bobby Holland Hanton.
Stunt performer Bobby Holland Hanton.

Hollywood stuntman Bobby Holland Hanton has worked with Chris Hemsworth as Thor and as a stunt double for Daniel Craig in Quantum Solace, and those are only a few of Hanton’s accomplishments!  The gymnast turned stunt performer is also sponsored by Dove Men+Care who was kind enough to send along some product for review.  But first, here’s my quick Q&A with Hanton:

MANE MAN: How are you able stay in such good fighting shape?

BHH: Well for me, I have found that keeping in shape at all times is very important. No matter what movie I am filming, or not filming for that matter, I maintain a balance of nutrition and exercise, in order to be in the best physical shape possible. Then, when an opportunity comes along, depending on who the actor is I am able to put on or lose weight relatively easy, with changes in either my diet or exercise. For instance, while doubling Chris Hemsworth in Thor 2, I isolated upper body workouts more regularly and included weights more often to bulk up; whereas for Daniel Craig in Bond, I focused more on nutrition and cardio to stay slender.

MM: And what role does “lifestyle” play in that?

BHH: I think the biggest thing that connects my career and every-day lifestyle would be discipline. I have to stay dedicated, even off-set and during my day-to-day. When I finish rehearsing, or filming, the only thing I want to do is go home, however I know I have to get a workout in – once I leave the gym, I always feel accomplished. My job truly depends on my body and what I am able to perform; therefore I know I have to push myself.

MM: Some of us find it difficult to embrace that discipline and mind shift into a healthier lifestyle.  Was that ever something that you were challenged by or found difficult?

BHH: Yes, definitely. When I first started my career, the drastic change in physique between roles and characters was extremely difficult. I was putting on weight, just to lose it a few months later. It was very difficult, because I was new to it and was testing the waters. However, now I have found out how my body works, and where my medium is to be able to lose or put on weight quickly.

MM: And you are known in Hollywood for superior stunt performance, and the new Dove +Men Care products fall right in line with that. Do you find it important to incorporate high performing products into your grooming routine as well?

BHH: Yes. It is extremely important to maintain a strict grooming regimen, especially when we are constantly wearing makeup, and wigs, while being physically active. Dove Men+Care offers a full range of products, specifically made for men’s skin, face and hair. I love their thickening shampoo, which truly does work, when I have wigs pulling at my hair for 12 hours a day (in Thor!). I also use the Odor Guard PW which is extremely gentle on my skin, and keeps me moisturized after all of the makeup and prosthetics used in some of these superhero movies.  I also love the Hydrate face wash and their new Fresh Awake Antiperspirant, which offers a non-irritating formula, so I am comfortable all day on set. You have to find products that suit you, and your skin care needs. It is great that Dove Men+Care offers such a variety of effective products for your entire routine.

Well said! Now on to the review!

dove deodorant
Dove Men+Care Fresh Awake deodorant and antiperspirant.

Obviously Dove Men+Care products are reasonably priced and widely available at corner drug stores and major chains around the country, which is definitely a great thing.  Dove Men+Care sent me both of the “Fresh Awake” scents formulas: the Non-irritant  Antiperspirant Deodorant and the 1/4 Moisturized Deodorant to review.

In my trials with the products, I have to say that I prefer the 1/4 Moisturizer Deodorant as it seems to both protect against odor and offer a smoother feeling as opposed to the more traditional antiperspirant deodorant. Unfortunately, the antiperspirant does list aluminum as an active ingredient which is known to cause skin irritation (it definitely did for me) which can be a very uncomfortable feeling.  For those not bothered by traditional deodorants causing itchy underarms don’t fret, but for those with more sensitive skin I would obviously advise you to try out the moisturizing deodorant instead.  Overall, both are solid performers and most guys would likely be satisfied with either.

Gen Mo: We Grow Together, Movember 2013

Hi all!  If you didn’t know, on November 1, Movember kicked off to raise money for men’s health initiatives.  Every year men around the globe start November 1st clean-shaven and only grow a stache during the month to serve as walking billboards for men’s health.  And I’m happy to announce I’m participating in Movember for the second year!

My goal is to raise $300 and I would greatly appreciate your help. Don’t worry, MANE MAN won’t see any of your funds.  It all goes directly to the Movember Foundation and goes towards testicular cancer research and other men’s health initiatives.

Unfortunately, over the years, Movember has gotten a bad rap due to non-genuine dudes participating solely for the purpose of looking like a hipster.  Trust me, I ran into some of them last year at the Movember Gala in NYC.  My friend Thom, over at MANFACE (a personal favorite), also highlighted how unfortunately some brands are now pimping their products during Movember for that extra revenue boost.  I’m here to tell you that I decided to participate in Movember because it fits with the mission of MANE MAN in engaging men in conversations and content that doesn’t happen all that often.  And being a guy myself, I know how reluctant guys can be to get good medical care but its incredibly important.  I bet you know some guys in your life who aren’t the best about seeing the doctor regularly, right?  I wholeheartedly support Movember in spreading the message that men’s health matters!

But what’s the impact?  This is what Movember is really about:

If you believe in the Movember cause, I hope you can donate and help me reach my goal of $300.  Tell your friends and share my Mo space!  You’ll get updates about my regrowing stache (and probably hear about how much I miss my goatee too).  Check it out!

It’s almost time for Movember!

Movember header

Last year I participated in my first Movember campaign and raised $255 for men’s cancer research.  While that is a drop in the bucket of all the millions men and women raised around the world, it felt great to contribute and there was a pretty awesome party to celebrate all our accomplishments.

This year, I’m back and I hope to raise $300 for men’s cancer research.  Here are a few points about Movember to get you enticed to donate:

  • Movember launched in 2003 with the goal of promoting awareness of both prostate and testicular cancer as well as mental health issues
  • Participants start the month of November clean-shaven and do not shave for the rest of the month
  • Participants are often called Mo Bros (or Mo Sistas)
  • In 2012 Mo Bros and Mo Sistas raised $21 million
  • Movember is a not for profit organization that uses all raised funds to health partners including LIVESTRONG and others. To learn more about funded programs click the following link: http://us.movember.com/programs

You’ll see me on November 1 bare-faced and you’ll get to see my re-growth progress throughout the month.  I hope that you’ll consider donating to a cause that affects all of us.  Please visit my donate page here: http://mobro.co/manemanblog.

Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month with a free haircut

Valery Joseph Salon NYC
Receive a free haircut when you donate to Locks of Love at the Valery Joseph salon in NYC this October.

Hi ladies and gents!  If you didn’t know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month.  Many of us have been affected by breast cancer, either directly or indirectly, and I think it’s important to acknowledge the women who have battled cancer and help spread the word about prevention.  Here are a few general facts about breast cancer via the Susan G. Komen website:

  • Breast cancer is the most common cancer among African American women
  • Breast cancer also affects men and is expected to reach 2,240 new cases in 2013
  • Estimates claim that there will be about 232,340 new cases of invasive breast cancer in U.S. women in 2013
  • There is a higher rate of survival with early detection via mammograms
  • Changes in the look or feel of breasts are the most common symptoms of breast cancer

What can you do about this?  Well for one, it’s important to conduct regular self exams on a monthly basis.  Additionally, you can raise money for breast cancer research and donate to Susan G. Komen or a host of other breast cancer initiatives. Men, you can support the women in your lives to be diligent about getting checked or even offer your own hands on assistance in checking if it’s that kind of relationship.

If you are in NYC this October you can also visit the Valery Joseph Salon in Manhattan (only offered at the 1044 Madison Avenue location) on Sundays or Wednesdays and donate hair to Locks of Love. In return you get a free haircut from their experienced stylists, which isn’t a bad trade-off!  Keep in mind to donate to Locks of Love you must have 10 inches of hair to donate which is a lot, but in my opinion well worth the risk to help someone in need.

Get Better Sleep with Sainthood Herbs Stress & Sleep

School is back in session and for working folks the last few months of the year can be super stressful with the added pressure of holiday planning.  And let’s not forget those of us that experience chronic higher levels of stress at especially tough or challenging jobs.

While there are behavioral things you can do to help reduce stress and get better sleep, herbal and natural remedies can be a good adjunct.  Sainthood Herbs has a good lineup of natural products aimed at a variety of ailments.  The folks over at Sainthood Herbs were kind enough to sponsor this review with a 30 day supply of their Stress & Sleep supplement.

Created to reduce stress and promote restful sleep, the Stress & Sleep supplement packs lemon balm extract, chinese mint, silk tree bark, jujube seed and a host of other natural ingredients.

Designed to be taken once per day (3 caps) with a meal, I found that the supplement was easy to integrate into my daily routine as I already take a multivitamin with dinner daily.  I did find the formula itself to be helpful and pretty soothing. When paired with regular exercise it does help promote better quality sleep.  However, those who think the supplement will help you get more sleep may need to manage your expectation, at least in my opinion.  I didn’t find that I gained any extra time in bed but did feel a difference in the quality of my sleep which helped make Monday mornings a bit more tolerable.

Priced at $28.95 for a thirty-day supply, I think that you might find the supplement to be a good investment, particularly if you often find yourself anxious or under regular stress.  I think it’s most definitely worth a try and could even help improve your daily quality of life.  And, it’s natural and gluten free so what’s not to love?

*Disclosure: Products for review were provided courtesy of Sainthood Herbs.

The Benefits of Krill Oil

Krill Oil is really like Omega 3 fatty acids on well…acid. The benefits of omega 3s are relatively well-known at this point and they include:

  • the ability to lower triglycerides to promote heart health
  • reduces asthma symptoms due to anti-inflammatory properties
  • reduce joint pain and stiffness

That’s a big  list of benefits especially if you suffer from any of the related conditions such as heart disease, asthma, high cholesterol or rheumatoid arthritis. Not to be outdone, Krill Oil (from small shrimp like creatures in the ocean) boasts the same benefits (with a few others) and packs even more punch according to research. It also maybe be more easily absorbed in the body which can obviously help with supplement efficiency.  Here are some of the benefits of Krill Oil:

  • helps rid the body of free radicals that contribute to illness (anti-oxidant)
  • protects your heart and improved cholesterol levels
  • alleviates inflammation
  • increased brain functioning
  • anti-aging properties (improves texture of skin and hair)

I have been taking Krill Oil for a few months now and I have to be honest, I have not personally noticed any difference in joint health or any of the other benefits. That being said, I’m late for my annual physical so who knows if those results will support any of these claims.

There are some potential side effects to using Krill Oil such as gas, diarrhea or bloating.  And TMI, I have experienced some of those symptoms, especially when first starting the supplement.  I’m still on the fence if Krill Oil is something that I would purchase on my own in the future, but as I am more conscious of my health these days it is good to know that at least I’m likely getting some benefit even if I can’t feel a difference.  As always, MANE MAN does not dispense medical advice so be sure to check with your primary care physician if you’re interested in trying Krill Oil and reaping its benefits.

*Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by Viva Labs  and products for review were provided as a courtesy to MANE MAN.