Beyond Basic Blood Work: Tests to Consider When Tracking Health Trends
Assuming you've recently ordered the expanded labs that we suggested on page one of the Blood Work Cheat Sheet, here's a additional assessments to consider to see if your lifestyle is maximizing your health.
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00:25 Measuring your omega 3 index is more important for men and post-menopausal women. Hormone changes in post-menopausal women greatly increases risk of heart disease.
0:44 Bill Harris, PhD explains the omega-3 index
2:23 An omega 3 index below 4%, reflects higher risk of sudden cardiac death, having a fatal heart attack, should they have a heart attack.
03:40 Omega 3s in the 6% to 8% range is optimal for reducing risk of sudden cardiac death, compared to those of us with omega 3 index of 3 or 4%.
04:00 OmegaQuant offers an at home test of your Omega 3s. The OmegaQuant test quantifies the percentage of EPA and DHA in your red blood cell membranes. They also look at palmitate.
04:15 When palmitate increases, it is a proxy that potentially de novo lipogenesis is occurring. This means that insulin is causing your liver to increase fatty acid synthesis, which can result in insulin resistance and fat gain.
05:15 A DEXA scan will show you where your fat is being distributed. It will also give insights into your bone mineral density. Ageing and gaining fat around the middle, has been linked with low mineral density and muscle mass.
05:23 Osteosarcopenic obesity is the simultaneous loss of bone mineral density, loss of muscle and gain of fat.
03:50 A DEXA scan every 2 years tracks the trajectory of your body composition and your muscle. The amount of fat on your body is a reflection of your vitality.
05:25 A full body MRI every 5 years or so can be done if you have cancer in your close family or you are a former smoker.
06:42 If cardiovascular disease runs in your family, or you have sleep apnea, iron overload or insulin resistance, you may consider testing your CIMT (carotid intimal thickness). It shows how much atherosclerosis or stenosis is in the carotid arteries. A coronary artery calcium score is more invasive.
07:30 The arterial pulse wave velocity test is non-invasive. It measures the elasticity of your vessels. Stiff arteries are characteristic of inflammation.