When it comes to monitoring your health, there are many insightful markers that tell a more complete picture of what your body is up to and what is going on behind the scenes, beyond the routine tests you’d find in an annual physical or check-up.
These markers are not always the first go-tos, but to know their status is invaluable when it comes to preventing a problem before it becomes a problem. Here are a few markers WellnessFX gives consumers access to and why.
6 Important Biomarkers We Test
1. Vitamin D
About 70% of the population has low levels of vitamin D, though most don’t realize it. While there is still much that is unknown about vitamin D, research has linked lower levels of vitamin D to a variety of health issues, including: Decreased bone strength, Prostate cancer, increased inflammation, heart disease, dementia, increased blood pressure, and depression
A number of factors, ranging from how much sun exposure you actually get, to how efficiently your body processes that exposure into vitamin D, leads to certain people being at higher risk for having low vitamin D levels, or vitamin D deficiency.
The only accurate way to find out if you have low vitamin D is to get a blood test.
Want to learn more about Vitamin D? Check out our most popular post on Vitamin D, “The “Vitamin D Sweet Spot” and Its Relationship To Aging.”
Now considered one of the best indicators for pre-diabetes, HbA1c measures your average blood sugar over the last few months. This gives a more accurate picture of your risk profile than relying solely on monitoring glucose, which monitors the last few days.
To see how carbohydrates impact your HbA1c levels, visit our 6 Important Truths About Carbs & Which Ones You Should Eat.
Apolipoprotein B is a particle on LDL cholesterol, and acts as the ‘anchor’ when LDL sticks to the walls of blood vessels (this is bad). It’s been recently found to be an even better indicator of risk for heart disease than LDL (or anything else, for that matter). Your Apo B level may be a better indicator of cardiovascular risk than even LDL cholesterol.
High-sensitivity C-reactive protein, or HS-CRP, measures inflammation–the body’s response to internal damage–in the body. There is a link between higher levels of inflammation and many chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, dementia, and cancer and by lowering inflammation, you can potentially reduce risks of these diseases. While there are a few ways to test for inflammation, it turns out that hs-CRP is the best indicator currently known.
For a list of inflammation-fighting foods, see our blog post of a day of meals & snacks to help you be your best self.
56% of the U.S. population is deficient in magnesium, a mineral which plays many vital roles including preventing heart disease and diabetes, controlling blood pressure, maintaining healthy cholesterol levels, and is essential for healthy cellular function. Magnesium is part of chlorophyll, the green pigment found in plants, so green leafy vegetables are particularly high in magnesium. The average American consumes foods that are rich in energy and poor in micronutrients such as processed foods, sugar, sodas, and even meat. This is the most significant cause of magnesium deficiency in the U.S.—not enough green vegetables in our diets. Testing RBC magnesium is the most precise way to assess the Magnesium in our cells.
6. Thyroid-stimulating Hormone (TSH)
How the thyroid functions either makes or breaks performance in all areas of life. Over 10% of the U.S. population will have a thyroid condition at some point in their lifetime. Of those with thyroid disease, 60% are unaware that they have it. The thyroid gland not only shields the body from wearing down from stress and disease, but also serves as the major catalyst for stimulating energy, muscle growth, and a clear and sharp brain. A poorly functioning thyroid, for example, will interfere with exercise by either eliminating the possibility of building muscle or causing you to cancel your workouts altogether. Even under otherwise ideal performance, the body will not be able to burn fat when the thyroid slows down.
Read up on these 20 Important Facts You Need to Know about the Thyroid.
To test your thyroid, check out our special Advanced Thyroid panel.
If you want to learn more about blood testing and why more people are doing it, check out the 6 Reasons Why Even Healthy People Get Regular Blood Tests, or the 7 Ways WellnessFX is Different Than Your Average Healthcare Experience.
How WellnessFX Can Help
WellnessFX tests 30 – 125 different health markers depending on the package, focusing on all of the conventional red flags as well as more subtle indicators of poor health.
Our Baseline package includes advanced lipid profiles, inflammation biomarkers, vitamin D levels, a comprehensive metabolic panel (CMP), thyroid panel, and newer cardiovascular health markers. WellnessFX Premium package includes screenings of genetic markers for the effectiveness of common medications, hormones indicative of reproductive and athletic health, and types of fats in the blood that develop in clogging and can determine the best nutrition for your body. WellnessFX utilizes the most advanced laboratory testing techniques available.
The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.