Ask Tana: Know Your Numbers

By: Tana Amen | Resource Categories: Fitness, Nutrition, and Tips. | on 21/02/2015 at 9:21 PM

Do you know your health numbers?

Let’s see.

Fill in the blanks:

My blood pressure is _____/_____

(Blood Pressure should be at or below 120/80) The top number is the pressure when the heart beats (systolic). The bottom number is the pressure when the heart is between beats (diastolic).

My total cholesterol is _______

Total Cholesterol (mg/dL) should be below 200, right? Numbers are not as much the focus any longer as the type of cholesterol your body makes. The idea of HDL being “good” and LDL being “bad” is an outdated concept. You should get an “extended profile” done for cholesterol so you know if you are making small dense particles (more damaging) or large fluffy molecules (less damaging), as well as other important information. If your cholesterol is a little high, but you’re making large fluffy LDL, you may not be in as much danger as someone who has low cholesterol but makes small dense particles. In either case, you can’t change what you don’t measure. This is a discussion to be had with your physician.

My total HDL cholesterol is ________

HDL should be above 40 (mg/dL), closer to 80 mg/dL is optimal LDL is has been labeled the “bad” cholesterol because it can stick to blood vessel walls, reducing or blocking blood flow. But now you know better.

My triglyceride level is ______

Triglycerides should be below 150 mg/dL. (This is a liberal number). Sugar and simple carbohydrates will quickly elevate this number.

If you are drawing a blank in filling out the blanks, you are not alone. Many people know their calorie and nutritional numbers, but they don’t know their most important numbers about their body!

You eat right, you walk every day, you go to the gym…do you think you are healthy? For many of you, the surprising answer is a big fat “no.”

Stress, as an example, can throw a wrench in your health goals.

High blood pressure is a silent killer, and stress is its partner in crime.

Stress can raise blood pressure, increase stress hormones in your body, increase inflammation, as well as elevating cholesterol levels.

Medical researchers have now discovered a link between periods of severe stress and increased cholesterol levels. Stress increases your cortisol levels. (Cortisol is a hormone produced by your adrenal glands when you are stressed.)

Under stress, cortisol delivers glucose to the body to help the fight-or-flight mechanism function properly. If cortisol is consistently doing this, blood-sugar levels remain constantly high, which can lead to not only hypo/hyperglycemia and diabetes but also elevated cholesterol levels.

You get caught up with a mix of crazy work deadlines, family needs, and household responsibilities—perhaps with a car repair problem tossed in just to keep things interesting.

Your manic Mondays, traumatic Tuesdays, and wound-up Wednesdays might be contributing to a ticking time bomb inside you while you are eating healthy and exercising.

Even being on a “diet” and over-exercising can stress you out!

Talk about being kicked from behind!

So, even the healthiest body, like the smoothest running car, needs a check-up and a tune-up every now and then…

So it’s important that you watch the video, while I briefly walk you through:

Waist to Height Ratio
Blood Pressure
Heart Rate
Blood Sugar / Hemoglobin A1C
Blood Cell Count
Cholesterol / VAP
Hormones
C-Reactive Protein
Homocysteine
Ferritin
I also briefly discuss your thyroid and testosterone. You’d be surprised how just those two things can derail your best-laid health plans.

Are you as healthy as you think? Watch the video and find out.

Let me know if you have any questions, or an idea for a future video.

Remember, the greatest wealth is health. -Virgil

Thank you for watching!