10 Tests Every Man Shouldn't Go Without
Routine health check-ups are important for men.
Even in the absence of symptoms, a yearly checkup is recommended for males of all ages.
Men have always seemed reluctant to getting health check-ups but they are the sure way to prevent health problems before they develop into serious health issues.
Full Blood Count
Think of the FBC as an array of baseline numbers for key factors such as red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, liver function and Iron.
Within the FBC, a hematocrit score indicates the proportion of red blood cells in your total blood volume, and a hemoglobin measurement assesses the oxygen-carrying protein of red blood cells.
Low numbers may signal anaemia, a blood disorder that can lead to heart arrhythmia if left untreated.
While you are getting blood taken, get your Thyroid Stimulating Hormone checked. Thyroid problems hit men as well as women, and stress and poor sleep are often the culprits.
With an overactive thyroid, there may be signs of a goiter—a swollen area in the neck. Hyperthyroidism, as it's called, can also lead to an increased heart rate, anxiety, sleep problems, and weight loss.
Symptoms of an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) may include personality changes, hair loss, weight gain, and a cloudy memory.
Both thyroid conditions can lead to more serious, life-threatening illnesses when left untreated.
The thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) test will determine if you have a problem. Normal range for this test is between 0.5 to 2.0 mmol/L.
Glucose Fasting Test
This test give you an idea of if you are likely to develop type-2 diabetes. The standard measure is the fasting glucose test.
Blood glucose levels are checked after fasting for between 12 and 14 hours.
Normal results range from 3.6 to 6.0 mmol/L
Impaired fasting glucose range from 6.1 to 6.9 mmol/L
Probable Diabetes range from 7.0 mmol/L and above
If you fall out of the normal ranges for this test, shed some weight, 80 to 90 % of people with type-2 diabetes are overweight.
Slashing carbs from your diet and hitting the treadmill for 15 to 20 minutes a day should do the trick while offering the added benefit of increasing your insulin sensitivity.
The Vitamin D Test is a serum assay that quantitates 25-hydroxyvitamin D2 and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 metabolites.
The major biologic function of vitamin D is to maintain the normal blood levels of calcium and phosphorus involved in bone mineralization.
Vitamin D also influences expression of more than 2,000 genes, including those responsible for regulation of cellular proliferation, cell differentiation, apoptosis, and angiogenesis.
Normal Vitamin D Levels:
Children: 25(OH)D > 50nmol/L
Adults: 25(OH)D > 75nmol/L however research shows that some measures of health may only improve at higher levels, > 100nmol/L
Click Here to find out your Vitamin D levels
The fasting lipid profile including total cholesterol, LDL “bad” cholesterol, and HDL “good” cholesterol, can help to evaluate your risk of heart disease.
Beginning at age 20, you should be tested every five years – assuming that your results are within the normal ranges.
If your cholesterol level is above these ranges or you have a family history of heart disease, testing more frequently more be necessary.
If your HDL is too low, tossing walnuts into your yogurt may raise your good cholesterol by 9 percent. If your triglycerides are high, cut back on starches, breads, pasta, and other carb-loaded offerings.
Even if your LDL levels don't go down, you can still halve your chances of dying of a heart attack simply by exercising.
An inflatable cuff wrapped around your arm can detect high blood pressure, hopefully long before linked complications, such as heart attack and stroke ever occur.
Once a man reaches the age of 18, he should have his blood pressure checked. If your blood pressure is normal — less than 140/90 — you should have it rechecked in one to two years.
However, if blood pressure if found to be high, it should be rechecked in one to two months.
A common misconception is that our “inherited genes” determine our fate in life. In fact, research has shown that this is not necessarily so.
It is true that you cannot change your “inherited genes” HOWEVER you can compensate for their influence. It is possible to maximise our “genetic potential” and change our health by targeted exercise, nutritional and lifestyle choices.
The good news is that if you know your genetic profile and what gene variants you have, then you are armed with a very powerful tool for maximising your health potential.
When you know and understand your Personal Genetic Profile, you can make informed choices about your nutrition, lifestyle choices and the type of exercise that best suit your own genetic profile.
Obesity can be measured not only by weight on the scales but also by a BMI and waist circumference measurement.
You can do this simple test on your own.
BMI = (Your Weight in Kg)
(Height in Meters) x (Height in Metres)
For Example for someone that is 70kg and 1.7m Tall
BMI = _ (70)____
(1.7) x (1.7) BMI is 24
BMI of 18-25 = Optimal Weight
BMI of 25-30 = Overweight
BMI of over 30 = Obese
For men waist measurement should be under 94cm with a greatly increased risk of developing chronic disease if you are over 102cm.
For men over the age of 14, a monthly self-exam of the testicles is an effective way of becoming familiar with this area of the body and thus enabling the detection of testicular cancer at an early — and very curable — stage.
Why do you need to do it monthly? Because the point of the self exam is not to find something wrong today.
The point is to learn what everything feels like when things are normal, and to check back every month to make sure that nothing has changed.
If something HAS changed, you will know it and you can do something about it.
The good news is that this common malignancy is usually curable, especially when detected early.
Starting at age 50, males should have a digital exam of their prostate. The physician uses a gloved finger in the rectum to determine if there is any enlargement of the prostate.
Enlargement could indicate benign enlargement or even cancer.
Eyesight tends to deteriorate with age. It’s recommended that:
• Men aged between 50 and 65 years should have a general eye examination every five years.
• Men aged over 65 years should have an eye examination once a year.
• Every man over 40 years should have regular eye examinations. One condition that an optometrist can test for is glaucoma. This is a serious eye condition characterised by high fluid pressure within the eyeball.
Men at increased risk should be tested for glaucoma at an earlier age. Risk factors include family history, diabetes, prior eye injury, high blood pressure or use of steroids.