Testing and Other Ways to Know what is Going On
Tests routinely done along with medical exams are a bit like the trailer of a movie…they show only highlights, not the whole story by any means. Often our intuition and little things you notice can be an important guide to what is going on in the body. That is why you should make notes when thoughts and questions occur to you. Take them to your doctor and make sure you are heard. Before I list laboratory tests, I’d like to acquaint you with some simple FREE ways you can acquire clues about what might be out of balance.
- Be aware of your body. We will likely notice and be curious if we gain or lose a lot of weight without having made an obvious change. However, there are many subtle signs that might go unnoticed. In Chinese medicine there is a whole system of diagnosis based just on the tongue. Often they point to something as simple as a nutrient deficiency.
- Keep a log. In a notebook keep track of the day, time, what you ate or drank and how you feel or the status of any issue you are watching. Reviewing the record can highlight trends and connections and such things as immediate and delayed reactions to foods listed below. Then you can tease apart the individual foods and ingredients to find the culprit.
- Notice immediate reactions even if tiny. If after a meal your ears turn red, you feel flushed or congested, those could be clues to a food your body doesn’t like. I believe other things like biting your cheek or choking on a food, coughing, sneezing, nose dripping, sudden pain in the jaw joint, increased saliva, fatigue, a feeling of dulled awareness, pressure in the head/face or headache might all be your body trying to tell you it isn’t happy with something you ate, drank or smelled.
- Use your pulse rate as an indicator. Check your rate in the morning before you eat or exercise. The timer on your smart phone will do. Then, take your pulse again 20 minutes or so after meals. If the rate has jumped significantly (something like 20 points), there is a high likelihood that you are sensitive to some ingredient in the meal. You can react badly to a food and not have it raise your pulse, but if your pulse does jump, it’s definitely an indicator that you have a sensitivity to one of the ingredients. If you get a reaction, make notes about what you ate and how you felt. We usually eat foods that combine ingredients, so next time eat the ingredient foods separately to determine the culprit. (If you have several sensitivities, I recommend probiotics because the gut lining is probably not healthy.)
- Delayed reactions. Migraines, constipation, diarrhea, skin rashes, gas, cramping, headaches and depression are examples of signs that might be delayed reactions. (One help in confirming this is a trial of the elimination diet which you can do on your own.
- Take your temperature. Obviously, fever might be a sign of disease, but so can a chronically low temperature. If your temperature is consistently below 97.8⁰ Fahrenheit, take the thyroid quiz or at least point this factor out to your health professional.
- Check the pH of your first morning urine. Capture the first morning urine in a disposable cup and using litmus paper, look to see how acidic it is. Diseases love it when the reading is below 6.5 (acidic). When it is 7 and above (alkaline), cancer is hampered.
- Use questionnaires. Good examples are listed below under “Free Articles”. Good books often have questionnaires that can help you sort out what is going on. For example, here is a useful website quiz where you can check your health age. Below is a link to my yeast questionnaire. I was also impressed with the questionnaires about mood and cravings in End Your Addiction Now that can get to the root deficiencies.
- Tape measure. Besides monitoring an increase (or the more rare, decrease) in the size of body parts, you may spot meaningful trends. See the body shape information in the article on DIABETES / WEIGHT LOSS.
- Guidelines from Bill Sardi. Forget complete blood counts (CBC), PSA tests, cholesterol count, biopsies, pap smears, etc.
It seems like modern medicine measures all the wrong things when it comes to assessing health rather than the presence of disease. Your CBC (complete blood count) may be normal but that doesn’t necessarily mean you are healthy. Maybe these are measures that should be taken to better assess the state of health:
- Vitamin C levels and intake from supplements (any diet would provide inadequate amounts)
- Iron storage (ferritin)- 20-70 is healthy range
- Gut bacteria — consumption of fermented foods (unsweetened pickles, sauerkraut, miso soup)
- Zinc intake (zinc blood levels are notoriously inaccurate); zinc intake from diet is inadequate
- Leptin, AMPK levels to determine overall metabolism
- Consumption of supplemental niacin, niacinamide or its derivatives (nicotinamide riboside, nicotinamide mononucleotide) to produce NAD, critical for cellular energy.
- Consumption of major polyphenols (catechin, quercetin, resveratrol) in order to assess hormetic dose that triggers Nrf2 and activates endogenous antioxidants (glutathione, catalase, SOD) in order to pre-condition the heart, brain, etc. from damage (strokes, heart attacks).
- Assessment of carbohydrates and refined sugar intake
- Bile flow (elevated bilirubin indicates blockage of bile flow); backup of bile results in poor digestion of fats and oils and a backup of cholesterol (bile is made from cholesterol) into the arteries. Consumption of nutrients that improve bile flow (resveratrol, vitamin C + apple pectin, taurine) would support disposal of bile and eradication of cholesterol deposits in arteries.
- Calcification of arteries (Agatston test, CAT-scan/radiation)
- Determination of capillary fragility using blood pressure cuff.* (vitamin C-related)
- Determination of abnormal (unbalanced) chromosomes via noninvasive genetic test. Unbalanced chromosomes are a hallmark of cancer.
- Thiamin levels (vitamin B1)
* The capillary fragility test is a test using a blood pressure cuff. The cuff is applied for five minutes to the arm of a person and inflated to a pressure halfway between the systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Petechiae within the circumscribed skin area are then counted 1 Ten petechiae per square inch is considered normal, ten to twenty, marginal. Petechiae that are more than twenty per square inch are beyond the acceptable normal range and the
Yeast Quiz. Rating yourself on the factors in this quiz can help you determine if your symptoms might be caused by and overgrowth of fungus.
Thyroid Quiz. Rating yourself on the factors in this quiz can help you determine if your symptoms might be caused by an under-functioning thyroid gland.
A website with definitions and meanings of tests.
Your Blood Never Lies: How to Read a Blood Test for a Longer, Healthier Life by James LaValle, Rph, CCN, ND
Nutrition Test for Better Health: Improve Your Health and Nutritional Status Through Personalized Tests by Cass Ingram, MD
Vitamin D test
Omega 3 test. This is an easy test that you do at home with a drop of blood and mail in.
Cardio Ion Test. You may have heard or read about this test from Sherry Rogers, MD. It is very sophisticated but, may require Dr. Rogers to interpret it for you by phone to get the real meaning.
Copyright 2014-2018 by Martie Whittekin, CCN