It may be surprising to know that men are almost two times more likely than women to die from the most common causes of death, such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. This may be in part because women are often better at scheduling regular examinations and talk to their doctors about signs and symptoms more readily. Actually only about half of us guys remember our last doctors appointment.

This past June my partner and I went cruising around the country in an all-electric Tesla Model S to drive home the point that men’s health matters. On the Drive For Men’s Health we went form Central Florida to New York City to Los Angeles. We made stops at small communities and major health institutions to bring light to an issue that often goes ignored. During National Men’s Health Week (always the week before Father’s Day), we  encourage men around the country to take notice and take action. We’re asking them, simply, to talk about their health.

The truth is, most of these conditions can be prevented, and men, too, can avoid them by taking steps to live a healthier lifestyle. We often tell our patients atThe PUR Clinic at South Lake Hospital, in affiliation with Orlando Health that the first step is being in tune with your own health – listening to your body, knowing your family’s health history and understanding risk factors specific to you. The next step is often the hardest part for men – scheduling regular appointments with a doctor and being open to discussing all aspects of your health, even the seemingly difficult or “embarrassing” ones.

For instance, a common misconception about men’s health is that the only thing that runs the car is the engine. However, keeping up with your health involves so much more than getting regular prostate or rectal exams. We often don’t realize it, but men are actually more prone to mental health conditions like depression and anxiety, and are even more likely than women to commit suicide. We can no longer ignore these factors when talking about men’s health, and must understand that this topic encompasses everything from getting enough sleep to exercising and eating a healthy diet.

The good news is, it’s never too late to start the conversation. It can be as simple as making a phone call to the doctor’s office – and trust me, the results will pay off. One appointment, screening or check up could make the difference. There’s no reason not to take charge of your health right now. If not for you, do it for your family and business.

In 2015, The Drive reached an audience of over 400 million through social media, web, print, and TV. The next Drive is scheduled for June 9-18th, 2016 Another 10 days on the road educating men and their families to improve their health.