Lipoprotein(a): The one biomarker that could change everything

3 reasons why knowing your Lp(a) level is key to your health Reposted | Original Posted by: Dr. Alan Hopkins Your blood vessels carry vital nutrients and oxygen to your organs, including your heart and brain, so keeping them healthy and clear is vital to ensure your body stays in top working order.And, if you want to find out where you stand with your blood vessel health, having your cholesterol levels tested is a great place to start.But what many people don’t realize is that a standard cholesterol test won’t give you a complete picture of how healthy (or not) your blood vessels are.While knowing your cholesterol levels is important, there are a range of other biomarkers that can help you understand how well your vascular system is working.In particular, testing your lipoprotein(a) levels is something everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.That’s because high levels of this fatty particle in the blood can [...]

What are the Best Tests for Adrenal Fatigue? My morning cortisol is low, what is wrong?

What are the Best Tests for Adrenal Fatigue? My morning cortisol is low, what is wrong? What is stress?  Is it the image of someone looking frazzled and out of control?  Or maybe it’s someone getting angry over small but insignificant situations in life?  Or maybe it’s the “fear of missing out” feeling that you get when you can’t access your social media or catch up on emails?  And what about “hidden” stress, such as the stress caused by inflammation and imbalances in the body? Unfortunately, in today’s lifestyle, stress is something that most people experience daily.  It is mostly associated with emotions, but stress is intended to be a response to a situation that the body finds to be threatening.  The stress that our body was designed to deal with were the short bursts of stress, such as running away from a dangerous animal or dealing with a food shortage that required our bodies [...]

How to quickly screen for diabetic risk – what tests are important for diabetics?

How to quickly screen for diabetic risk – what tests are important for diabetics? If you watch TV, you’re likely to see commercials about prescription medications for diabetes.  These advertisements depict a scene that many want – happy, healthy, and functional.  If you close your eyes and listen to the commercials, you’ll find that a significant amount of information is provided at the end about risks of taking the medication.  Try it! With so many people living with diabetes, the term is used so often that we either think that we will never get this, or that if we do there are many medications that will keep it under control.  But what we can’t picture are all the risks – blindness, Alzheimer’s disease, amputation, debilitating heart attacks/strokes, weight gain, and the financial repercussions are among the many risks of having diabetes.  If you have diabetes and get to the point where you need to be on [...]

Is it worth it to do Nutrient Lab Testing?

Is it worth it to do Nutrient Lab Testing? John is a former vegetarian, who recently started eating a more vegetable-rich “Paleo” diet. He’s feeling great, and at his ideal weight, but does have some nagging digestive issues like heartburn and occasional diarrhea, that doesn’t seem to be going away. These issues were present when he didn’t eat meat. He takes over-the-counter supplements to support his body and isn’t quite sure if they really help all that much. He was perusing the internet, and “Dr. Google” suggested he could have leaky gut, malabsorption problems, and many other possibilities. He saw a gastroenterologist about this, who diagnosed him with IBS and suggested he eat more fiber. He was not pleased with this recommendation, especially because he eats plenty of fiber! What’s his next step? Although “Dr. Google” is the bane of many practitioners’ practices, it is also a source of information that can be beneficial. John did [...]

How to advocate for myself with online blood testing

How to advocate for myself with online blood testing No one likes to be told what to do, but unfortunately, many doctors and health care practitioners don’t realize that that is exactly what is happening on a daily basis – insurance coverage and medical algorithms often determine the tests that a health care provider will order. You can request that your family practitioner order a set of lab tests, but it is, unfortunately, a low likelihood that they will acquiesce to your request. Why? Besides the algorithms and insurance restrictions mentioned above, they may not know how to interpret the results. This puts their license at risk, and no doctor or health care practitioner wants to lose a license that cost them so much time and money to obtain – even if it is for the good of the patient! The good news is that there are now direct-to-consumer-labs that don’t require an order from a [...]

What are the best tests for thyroid function and why?

What are the best tests for thyroid function and why? Jane was having difficulty maintaining her energy throughout the day. She attributed it to poor sleep and more stress with her work, but she was also experiencing changes in her hair, increased anxiety, and she was putting on weight. She set up an appointment wit her family practitioner, who checked some basic lab work, including iron levels, electrolytes, and a TSH. All came back normal (or within normal lab limits according to the laboratory reference ranges). Her practitioner advised to eat less, exercise more, and lower stress. But none of this worked, and she continued to have symptoms for years, before a friend mentioned that Jane probably needed a more comprehensive evaluation. With the right testing, she was finally able to get the right treatment and improve her life. But she didn’t need to suffer for so long! Unfortunately, all too often this scenario [...]

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