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As per Statistics Canada, men and women share similarities when it comes to health. But, differences exist — and are intriguing to review.

According to Statistics Canada, men and women share many similarities when it comes to health, with each group reporting comparable levels of physical and mental well-being. But the differences do exist, and they are intriguing to review. 

From drinking habits to mental health, many of these differences point to social realities impacting the genders. How do men and women cope with stress? How do they pursue—or abandon—self-care throughout their lifespans? 

Here are three statistics revealing some of the biggest differences between men’s and women’s health in Canada:

1. Drinking

One of the most dramatic differences between men and women, in the age group of 35-49 years, shows up in terms of drinking habits. In fact, men engage in heavy drinking almost twice as often as women. 

In 2019, only 16% of women reported heavy drinking, compared to 28% of men. 

2. Aerobic Fitness

When it comes to aerobic fitness in 2019, women and men trade places based on what age group they fit into.

Among the younger set—age 20 to 39—about 80% of women report “Poor to Fair” aerobic fitness, while only 50% of men in the same group fit in this category. But among the older set—40 to 59 years—men have the edge, with only 43% reporting “poor to fair” aerobic fitness, compared to 64% of women.

3. Mental Health

Data collected as late as September- November 2021 shows a biased impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health

In certain age groups—for example, ages 18 to 34—33% of women report their mental health to be “somewhat worse or much worse now” compared to pre-pandemic times.

About 27% of men of the same age group fit in this category of mental health perception. However, since women are also more likely to seek professional help, this may influence the rates of diagnosis.

Gender bias exists and is statistically significant

Men and women seem to be afflicted by a host of mental and physical health issues across age groups in Canada. The pandemic has only worsened the gap and impact.

As a community, let’s take time to slow down, check-in and empathize with our family, friends, coworkers, and even acquaintances. 

For we’re all in this TOGETHER – irrespective of age, gender, sex, colour, class or nationality.