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updated: 11/11/2013 11:05 AM

Your health: Grow a mustache in fight against cancers

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  • Men can join the "Movember" movement and grow a mustache in November to support the fight against prostate and testicular cancers.

      Men can join the "Movember" movement and grow a mustache in November to support the fight against prostate and testicular cancers.

 

A hairy fight


If you notice more men with mustaches this month, the reason might be "Movember," a global campaign that encourages men to grow mustaches in November to support the fight against prostate and testicular cancers.

Last year, 1.1 million people took part in Movember around the world, raising more than $148 million, according to the group's website. Participant numbers soared 29 percent from 2011 to 2012, after doubling from the previous year, reports The Washington Post.

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"Most men have always wanted an excuse to grow a mustache," Movember co-founder Justin Coghlan said. "So many cool people in history have had mustaches, from Einstein to Dali to Jimi Hendrix. We feel like we've brought back something cool."

Movember's funded programs focus on men's health, prostate and testicular cancer, and mental health. As of last week, more than 340,000 people had registered globally with about $4.2 million pledged so far, according to the campaign's website. Britain has the most participants, while the U.S. is leading the donation board with more than $1.1 million to date. To find out more, visit http://us.movember.com/

No cure for baldness


Despite a recent report of a major breakthrough in lab-grown human hair, a cure for baldness remains elusive. Thankfully, men have options beyond toupees and hair plugs, says The Washington Post.

The October issue of Men's Health sorts through them, offering warnings and tips in a field with a reputation for quackery. Among them: Try to find the cause. Not all hair loss is a genetic inevitability: There are also nutritional and hormonal factors, the magazine reports. The article also weighs the benefits of drugs such as Propecia (finasteride) and Rogaine (minoxidil). They may be FDA-approved, "but both are better at maintaining what you have than regrowing what you lost," dermatologist George Cotsarelis says in the article.

Be wary of shampoos that say your hair will look thicker: "Only one ingredient has been shown to truly preserve your pate. Ketoconazole, an antifungal used to fight dandruff, may save your mane by reducing" testosterone production in hair follicles. Transplants can cost as much as $10,000, according to the article.

There's a simpler, less expensive option: acceptance. "Reframe your view," the magazine advises, and think of balding as a (positive) distinction.

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