Men give up on the way they look at the age of just 46 – while women keep up appearances for over a decade longer, it has been revealed. Declining health, lack of physical fitness and not being bothered about trends or what’s deemed ‘cool’ were the biggest factors for blokes giving up.
But women will put the effort in for a full 13 years longer – focusing hard on their appearance and general fitness until at least age 59 before beginning to relax their standards.
The research, commissioned by the health & wellbeing mutual benenden health, also found women were nearly twice as likely to lack confidence in their image, with more than one third unable to claim they were at least content with their appearance.
It also emerged one third of the 2,000 men and women who took part in the study blamed a lack of happiness in contributing to their low confidence levels in the way they look.
”Our survey suggests that maintaining our physical wellbeing into our later years simply becomes a lesser priority – influenced by wanting to relax in comfort and not have to keep up with trends.
”And men appear to ‘give up’ far sooner than women. We regularly read in the news about how we are all living longer – thanks to improvements in medical science.
”But how many of us are taking proactive steps to ensure our basic health and wellbeing remains in shape as we grow older?
”Are we actually using healthcare services as a crutch to boost our longevity?”
More than half of those surveyed said they aren’t in great shape physically, whilst a third have never been the type to bother with doing exercise.
Another third stop worrying about the food they eat and how much alcohol they drink.
Other factors contributing to letting health and appearance take a downward spiral were a preference for comfort over style and an increasing reluctance to keep up with anything deemed trendy or fashionable.
And one in four people were of the belief that keeping healthy and looking good costs too much money and is too big a commitment.
An acceptant seven in ten men don’t worry regularly about the way they look, while more than half said they don’t really take any pride in their appearance.
That perhaps explains why one in three said they eat and drink what they like and don’t really consider health implications in regards to their diet.
And as well as giving up on appearances, nearly half have a constant health nag they’ve been burdened with for a long time and have given up trying to heal or improve it.
While two thirds of people think it’s normal to give up on worrying about appearances once someone has a serious partner.
And 53% of those who are married echo those thoughts, and no longer concentrate on their looks anywhere near as much as they did before getting hitched.
In fact, it takes a little over two years (26 months) after a wedding before the average person said they stopped bothering about their looks.
Paul Keenan added:
”We know that many people do look after their health, wellbeing and physical appearance – but it’s shocking to see that a third have never been the type to bother with doing exercise and more than half think they are not in great shape physically.
”And what is the excuse? One in four people think that staying healthy costs too much money and is too big a commitment. But is this is really true when walking is free but cars cost money to run, or when water is cheap and alcohol prices are rising.
”We can’t rely on healthcare services to provide support constantly without also taking responsibility for creating the best possible environment ourselves for good physical health.”