Most of us get blood work done once a year or so to check the major indicators of our health. Here are a couple of tips to get the most out of it.
IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT THE CURRENT NUMBERS- When you get your blood work done yearly, you will see a trend for what YOUR NORMAL is. If you have a number that is outside of the medical normal, that is one indicator that something may be wrong. But another indicator that can be just as important, that most people and even most doctors overlook, are major changes from one test to the other, even if it is within the medical normal.
Suppose your blood sugar is always around 99 when you get your blood tested. This is in the normal range. The next time you get your blood work done though, the number is 60. This is still in normal range according to many of the numbers the labs use, but the fact that it has changed that much can still indicate a problem. So keep your old blood work and compare it to the new numbers each time.
Many major problems have shown up this way and is often missed if you only look at the current numbers.
ADD THESE TESTS- Our understanding of disease has changed over the last few years, but not all doctors are keeping up. For example, inflammation – low level chronic infection, and low anti-oxidant status – have been found to be one of the root causes of many of our chronic diseases. Even mainstream medicine is lining up with this understanding now. For this reason, there are a few tests that would be very good to add to your blood work.
a. hsCRP (C-Reactive Protein, highly sensitive)- this is a very sensitive test to tell you the overall inflammation in your body. This is almost a mandatory test now, in my opinion.
b. White Blood Cell Counts- Most doctors do this test, but may not really look at the results. I believe many chronic diseases we don’t understand yet, like Alzheimer’s and Multiple Sclerosis may be due to chronic, low grade infections of bacteria and viruses that we haven’t identified, or are unable to detect or treat yet. If your white blood cells are off kilter every time you get your blood work done, you may have a chronic, low grade infection.
c. Homocysteine- This is another inflammatory test that is very helpful in determining how inflamed your inner body may be.
d. Oxidized LDL Chol- The newest research is showing that it may not be all that important what your cholesterol numbers are. It may be that cholesterol is not a problem at all, unless it becomes oxidized. In addition to Inflammation and chronic infection being two major problems in modern society, a lack of sufficient Anti-Oxidants is another. By checking your oxidized LDL levels, you can tell if you need more anti-oxidants, and also evaluate your risk of heart attack more accurately than if you are going by cholesterol levels alone, which we have known for quite a while to have little to do with heart health.
THE THREE FACTORS- So the main factors that are turning out to be the most important these days for our health are INFLAMMATION, INFECTIONS and ANTI-OXIDANT LEVELS.
By getting these levels tested, as well as the basics that you normally get on your blood tests, you can find any weak areas in your health that may exist and fix them with diet, vitamins and herbs targeted to these conditions before they become a real problem.
If you do not have insurance that pays for blood work, or if your doctor will not work with you and run these tests, let us know – we may be able to help.
Hope this helps,
Dr Matt and Dr Robin
This week’s bit of Useless Information: Ducks, like humans, have different regional accents when communicating with each other.
This email is courtesy of Matthew Barnes, D.C. and Robin Barnes, D.C. Neither this nor any of our emails are intended to be medical advice and should not be taken as such. They are opinion and are for informational purposes only. None of the nutrients discussed here are meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.