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Men’s health champion Richard Ekkebus on why men’s health matters and how to stay on top of it

The awful truth is that globally, men die on average five years younger than women, yet many men won’t talk about their health. 

This Movember, we speak to Richard Ekkebus, Culinary Director at two-Michelin-starred Amber at The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. Not only is Richard a top chef, he is also a key player in fundraising efforts for Movember in Hong Kong, which promotes men’s health during the month of November and beyond. 

Let’s talk about it and raise awareness

It’s vital to highlight men’s health because “there’s a lot of awareness in the field of women’s health, but for men it is still very stigmatised, particularly mental health,” says Richard. “We pretend that males are always in control, but under the surface it is evident that there are a lot of men struggling with mental health.” 

Poor mental health can be deadly 

The results of poor mental health can be fatal. Globally, a man dies every minute from suicide. They often don’t recognise when they’re experiencing a mental health issue, and don’t ask for help. Sadly, stereotypical forms of masculinity that lead to emotional repression can severely affect their mental health, with deadly consequences.

Prostate cancer and testicular cancer are not easy to discuss either, but we must, even if it causes embarrassment. More than 1.4 million men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, making it the second most common cancer in males globally. And testicular cancer is the most common cancer among men aged 15 to 39. 

Richard’s health regime

Regarding annual screenings, he says: “People have cars and they bring them every year to the garage for a check-up. Our body is our own engine room, and they need to be looked after too.”

Richard takes care of his health through exercise and nutrition. This includes an hour of core training each day, and a healthy breakfast with lots of fruit and cereal. He also works out with a personal trainer twice a week “to shake up the routine and push me a little harder.” All this helps him feel “more energised and focused.”

Ultimately Richard believes, “the more we bring men’s health to the forefront of conversation, the more we break down barriers and potentially help men see if things are okay before it’s too late.”

Here are five actions to live healthier, happier, and longer lives

1. Spend time with people who make you feel good.

2. Talk more.

3. Know the numbers.

4. Get regular check-ups, prostate and all.

5. Move, more.

For more information about men’s health and to learn how to get involved with Movember, visit

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