Do you own a car?
Do you take your car in for regular maintenance checks?
Do you change the oil?
Do you get it tuned up? Do you have the tires changed?
We will all agree that regular maintenance of our car keeps it running longer and better.
Do you put sugar in the gas tank?
Do you leave the car in the garage and never drive it?
Do you run your car really fast the majority of the day?
The answer is “Of course not! That’s not good for the car.”
It’s a fact, we take better care of our cars than we do of our bodies, yet our body is the only vehicle we will have forever. We cannot trade it in when it starts to break down and we cannot buy a second one down the road, so we had better take good care of this vehicle, because it is the only one we are going to get.
The best way to prevent disease is by maintaining your health. Health is an active process and something you work at every day, not something to be taken for granted.
We take the car in for regular maintenance including diagnostic testing to detect problems before they arise. Regular maintenance of your body allows for early detection of potentially life impacting problems!
So here is a simple way of looking at the evaluation of your best and most valuable car, your body.
1. Listen to the engine
In meeting with an integrative physician, we listen to our guys. We listen for key words, complaints, phrases which highlight for us potential areas of future (or current) problems. The history is highly valuable as it is the single greatest factor in identifying current or potential problems. It is often said in medical school “A poor physician only orders tests; a good physician listens to his patients; a great physician listens and understands”. Time is one of the most valuable commodities a physician can give you.
2. The fuel pump
Heart disease remains the number one area of problems for men. Over 60% of us will die because our pump and tubes malfunction (cardiovascular disease). Your doctor should be ordering all the currently available advanced cardiometabolic testing. We have referred before to the lab by HDL (www.hdlabinc.com) which we do on every male patient. A $4000 test billed to your insurance company. Go to HDL website
A thorough exam by your doctor ought to include not only your blood pressure, but your central blood pressure, (http://www.atcormedical.com/).
Checking for potential blockages of your arteries is easily done in office with a carotid ultrasound (http://cardionexus.com).
If you live long enough, you will get cancer (statistically probable). Next to heart disease, it is the most significant cause of illness and death.
Cancer is almost always curable IF detected early. You can check for rust (cancer) by ordering specific tumor markers which may signal early signs of cancer. Tests like PSA (prostate cancer), CDT-Lung (lung cancer), CEA (colon cancer), CA 19.9 (gastrointestinal cancer), CA1 15.3 (breast cancer), among other tumor markers provide early insight into this potentially fatal illness.
4. Composition of the fluids
Your body is an engine which burns fats, carbohydrates and proteins. A comprehensive evaluation of how these processes are taking place is essential to keeping your body running smoothly and for a long time.
A comprehensive evaluation of your diabetic markers, including blood sugar, insulin, pro-insulin, C-peptide, hemoglobinA1c, triglycerides, leptin, adiponectin and free fatty acids are all essential to determine if you are not processing and storing sugar properly. Early detection of blood sugar abnormalities are not seen in traditional evaluation of only blood sugar, insulin and hemoglobinA1c. There are many other markers which can be evaluated in determining if a problem is being to show its face.
Your body needs cholesterol to run and build. Cholesterol is a major component of each and every cell. Cholesterol is an essential fat to our body (one that we need to live). So it is not enough to simply determine your total cholesterol level, LDL and HDL levels. It is the composition, particle numbers, oxidative stress and density of particles which afford your physician the highest level of information.
5. Engine Heat
Inflammation is the hallmark of many diseases of aging, including cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s. Inflammation is like asking how hot your car is running.
Many fats, especially the Omega-3 oils, provide numerous health benefits including their anti-inflammatory effect. Determining your Omega-3/Omega-6 ratio is one of the major markers in determining if you are getting enough of these essential fats or if you are “burning” through them too quickly.
Other advanced inflammatory markers such as hsCRP, myeloperoxidase, fibrinogen, IL-6, IL-17a, and TNK-alpha are required to further evaluation signals of inflammation and help you and your doctor locate the cause.
6. Checking the Axel
Checking bone strength is important, especially for those men over the age of 60. Osteopenia is not only a female problem, over 1/3 of men in their 70s have lower than desired bone density. A simple 5 minute test (GE Lunar Prodigy Advance DexaScan) can determine if you are at risk.
7. Engine Performance
Our body is an engine which burns fuels and produces exhaust in the form of organic acids.
We can test to see how your body is running with a NutrEval FMV® Test. This test includes Metabolic Analysis, Amino Acid Analysis, Essential Fatty Acid Analysis, Elemental Nutrients and Toxin Analysis and Oxidative Stress Analysis. This test is highly informative in determining if you have nutrient deficiencies by analysis of the organic acids which your body produces (or doesn’t produce)
8. Onboard Computer
Our brain is the central processing device for our bodies. How it is functioning has a great deal of importance to your health now and in the future. CNS Vital Signs is an in-office procedure that helps objectively assess neurocognitive function using computerized neuropsychological tests that assists in the evaluation and management of neurodegenerative, neuropsychiatric disorders, aids the monitoring and management of their progression, and evaluation of brain disease.
Technology is advancing in the field of medicine. Is your physician up to speed?