©Arlene Taylor PhD

Females typically are more concerned with health and nutrition. They generally appear to take better care of themselves and their health. They purchase 75% of all vitamin supplements sold in the United States and take 61% of those purchased.

Stereotypically, at least, males appear to be less concerned about health and nutrition overall, although they may be more likely to participate in physical fitness programs. Tongue in cheek, some males act as if they believe the four food groups are fastfriedfat, and frozen. Although they refuse to overtly concern themselves about their health, males may actually worry more than women do. There is also some evidence that left-handed males may worry more than right-handed males.



• Girls tend to have higher levels of cytokine IL-10 both during and after surgery to repair heart defects and, as a result, recovered more easily. A female sex hormone, Progesterone, stimulates the release of cytokines, which can increase or decrease systemic inflammation.

• Females tend to have less aerobic power. They breathe more frequently (20 times per minute) but less deeply at each inspiration.

• Shallower breathing may be a factor in the lowered amounts of damage resulting from lead poisoning due to exhaust fumes.

• Phobias affect women anywhere from 3 to 10 times more frequently than men. Approximately 90% of agoraphobia patients are female.

• Boys tend to recover less easily from heart operations to repair heart defects, perhaps due to lower levels of cytokine IL-10.

• Males tend to breathe less often (16 times per minute) but more deeply at each inspiration. They inhale about 2300 gallons of air per day. After age 12, males have from 15%-30% more aerobic power than females. Part of their increased aerobic power is likely due to their higher lung capacity.

• Because males draw more air into their lungs, they may be at high risk from air pollution, and at higher risk when undergoing general anesthetic. Studies of exhaust fumes (a source of lead) have shown that children with the highest concentrations of lead in their bodies scored lowest on IQ tests, and that the boys scored even lower than the girls.

The female body tends to manufacture blood more efficiently. Their blood is generally thinner and clots more slowly, perhaps because it contains 20% fewer red blood cells. The male body tends to manufacture blood less efficiently. Their blood is generally thicker, heavier, redder (e.g., perhaps due to higher numbers of red blood cells), and tends to clot more quickly. This may place males at higher risk for undergoing surgical procedures.

Males report 50% fewer general headaches, but more migraines. Why then, stereotypically, does a male come home from work, say he’s too exhausted even to go out for dinner, and slump in front of the TV while expecting his partner to fix the evening meal? Perhaps part of the answer lies in the fact that females statistically have more endurance. For example, the capacity to exercise drops 2% for every ten years of age for females, but drops 10% for every ten years of age for males.


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