This paper will argue that it should no longer be seen as acceptable to present data that is limited to just a population wide or age standardised sex analysis. Such blunt approaches miss the opportunity to develop our understanding of the pivotal role that sex and gender play in health, wellbeing and illness. Taking what we have referred to as a gendered epidemiological approach, would: (i) ensure the routine inclusion of sex differences, (ii) explore how sex differences can be analysed in conjunction with other factors influenced by gender (age, social class, education, marital status etc), (iii) highlight differences within each sex and not just between the sexes, and (iv) apply a gendered lens to the interpretation of the findings. This more nuanced stance is required to ensure that the complexity of men and women can be reflected in the field of public health.
Copyright © 2011 The Royal Society for Public Health. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.