Secrets in Your Blood Can Let You Live Better, Longer
5 Min. Read | March 25, 2021
You feel good, eat a relatively healthy diet, exercise some and quit smoking. Deep down you know you could do more to maintain optimum health, but just can’t get motivated. If you let GoodCell run its General Health Panel on your blood, you might find some danger to your future health lurking there, and that should motivate you to get back on the bike and chop a few more veggies.
You may be among the half of insured Americans who don’t get annual physical exams. Several expert panels have issued statements suggesting that some parts of those exams, really aren’t necessary, but not all of them. Tests for certain biomarkers in your blood can surface undiagnosed early stages of heart disease, diabetes, conditions linked to chronic inflammation and a propensity to mental health issues. The GoodCell General Health Panel lets you track these independent of an annual exam, but still allows you to share information with your physician if you choose.
Silent Signs of Heart Disease
Cardiovascular disease resulting in heart attacks and strokes remains the number one killer in the U.S. so, yes, it is important to track your levels of cholesterol and other lipids, as GoodCell does. But the Health Panel tracks another biomarker most folks have never heard of and is actually a better predictor of cardiovascular disease than lipid levels. That marker high-sensitivity C Reactive Protein (hsCRP) measures inflammation that can both initiate and exacerbate the atherosclerotic plague that clogs arteries in cardiovascular disease.
Some immunologists call inflammation the root of all evil because it is linked to so many health issues. Inflammation usually is triggered by an injury or an infection, but often lingers and becomes chronic. Research links high level of hsCRP to certain cancers, rheumatoid arthritis, irritable bowel disease, endometriosis and other diseases. It can help delineate chances of lung cancer even in those of you who have quit smoking.
Some heart disease drugs do bring down hsCRP levels, but not always to healthy levels, and not as well as lifestyle changes you can take control of yourself. Increasing exercise and pushing harder toward a Mediterranean diet with lots of green vegetables can decrease inflammation throughout your body.
Diabetes Stalks in Unseen
Your blood carries another biomarker for under-appreciated risk, but this one most folks have heard of thanks to TV ads. It’s been hard to miss people declaring on TV that they can control their diabetes and their levels of HbA1c. What you may not have known is that HbA1C is also great at diagnosing or predicting those at risk for prediabetes. One in three adults have this early stage of Type 2 diabetes and 90 percent of those don’t know it. Several studies have looked at lifestyle interventions in these people and found a reduction in the number that go on to develop diabetes ranging from 34 to 58 percent.
A recent study using half a million patient records from the British health service provided another motivator to take HbA1c levels seriously—your brain health. It found that people who had prediabetes as measured by HbA1c were 42 percent more likely to experience cognitive decline over an average of 4 years.
A Vitamin Vital to Mental health and Much More
Another biomarker in the GoodCell Health Panel, also has an impact on brain health and much more. Levels of vitamin D, which are insufficient in 77 percent of the population, have been associated with dementia, preventing depression, seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and reducing the inflammation in the brain that happens in Parkinson’s Disease.
Proper levels of vitamin D contributes to an array of better health outcomes from bone health that may reduce fractures to improved pregnancy outcomes, and reductions in the severity of infections, in particular, respiratory infections. The latter has drawn attention recently as multiple studies have shown vitamin D deficiency linked to chances of infection with the virus that causes COVID-19, and increased risk for developing severe disease.
Find your motivation. Use the GoodCell General Health Panel that is a curation of four tests around Lipids, hsCRP, Hba1C and Vitamin D all in one to unlock the secrets of your blood – and you might indeed live better and longer. Learn more.