Men's Health Crisis: Half Of Aussie Guys Will Get Cancer Before 85

When Jonathan Coleman was told he had prostate cancer it didn't feel real.

It was like he was in a movie of his own life and he was waiting for the director to yell 'cut'.

"It felt like someone was going to go ‘... and cut, let’s move the camera around, let's get the reverse angle now’ and that’s how I felt. It was so weird," the 62-year-old Studio 10 host told 10 daily.

"All I could think was how will I tell my wife Margot, how will I tell the kids, should I not tell them, should I wait? And, does that mean I am going to die? ... but you don't really want to ask those questions because you don’t really want to know the answer," he said.

Coleman was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2017. Image: Jonathan Coleman.

Before receiving his diagnosis on a Friday afternoon in 2017, Coleman put everything before his health.

Coleman said he had a "bulletproof mentality where men just put off and put off and put off".

READ MORE: Jonathan Coleman On His Brave Cancer Battle: "I'm Bloody Lucky"

When his father died of a heart attack, Coleman started getting six-monthly blood tests to keep an eye on the vital organ and it was one of these regular tests the alerted doctors to a lump on his prostate.

Now he's is an ambassador for Movember, a month-long initiative in November where men grow a moustache, raise money and encourage conversations about men's health.

Coleman's message as an ambassador is about diligence and men taking control of their own well being.

"Don’t put it off, to tomorrow, to next week ... go and get the finger up your bottom if you need it."
Coleman is a 2018 Movember ambassador. Image: The Movember Foundation.

"The trouble is most guys don't want to talk about depression, they don't want to talk about suicidal thoughts, they don't want to talk about if they have bowel cancer for example."

Some of the statistics regarding men's health are very alarming.

On average, one in six men die by suicide in Australia each day and half of men will be diagnosed with cancer by the age of 85, Movember said.

More than 3,452 men will die of prostate cancer in 2018.

READ MORE: New Cause Of Death Report Shows Surge In Suicide Rate

Through raising awareness and funds, the Movember Foundation is aiming to halve the number of deaths from prostate and testicular cancer and reduce the amount of men taking their own lives by 25 percent by the year 2030.

"For that goal to be reached we need a continuation of funding for all the amazing research that is going on… the importance of Movember is that it helps fund those things," Coleman said.

Half of Aussie men will get cancer by the age of 85. Image: Movember.

Coleman also said it's vital men change their behaviour and make their health a priority.

"I am kind of superstitious about saying I am cancer free or I am in remission. I don’t really ever want to say that because I don’t want to get complacent … I’ve finished the chemo, I have finished the radiotherapy and now I have to stay healthy," he said.

"Don’t pretend it’s not happening because one day it might happen to you and then suddenly... you are the person in that movie of your life being told on a Friday afternoon it’s cancer."

Movember starts on Thursday, November 1st and continues through the month of November. 

Featured Image: The Movember Foundation. 

Contact Siobhan at skenna@networkten.com.au