It is easy to forget about your health thanks to your busy schedule. These five basic tests will help keep you on track.
You start your day thinking you’ll go to the gym but forget or decide to hit the pool but keep it for another day… And before long the excuses pile up and you’re caught in a vicious cycle. Add to that another little wrinkle. Many of us believe that we can achieve everything we did back in our 20s. We can lose 15 kg in two months because we did that when we were 25. Or lift those heavy weights because we used to do those.
But it’s important to accept the fact that your body has aged and it has undergone changes during that time. So it is crucial to know just how old your body really is and be prepared to treat it accordingly. Here are five tests that will help you and remind you to live a healthy life.
#1 Body Mass Index test
A Body Mass Index (or BMI) test is the most basic of them all. What it does is it measures your body fat in proportion to your height and weight. It will also help you determine whether or not you are obese. A BMI between 18.5 and 25 is considered within normal range. You can check your BMI online too at http://bmicalculator.cc.
#2 Lipid profile
Cholesterol is a word that can strike terror in the hearts of even the bravest men. The moment you cross 35, it is crucial that you get a lipid profile test done at least every five years. A lipid profile is a combination of tests that will tell you the amount of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (or HDL-C), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and triglycerides in your system. HDL is the good cholesterol and LDL is its bad cousin. Results are measured in milligrams per deciliter of blood (mg/dL) and a healthy total cholesterol goal should be under 200 mg/dL.
#3 Blood pressure test
Yet again a very basic test that we often tend to ignore but one that can help keep diseases related to the heart and kidney at bay. Keeping blood pressure in check also helps reduce the chances of getting a stroke. Your blood pressure should ideally be under 120/80 mm Hg. You don’t need to strap on the pressure cuff every month but it won’t harm you if you get a test done every year.
#4 Blood sugar test
When you are living in a country that is the diabetes capital of the world, a blood sugar test is one of the first things you should get done. A good indicator of whether your blood sugar is high is your blood pressure test. If your BP is over 135/80 mm then it’s your first red flag. Get a blood sugar test done ASAP.
#5 Vitamin D test
You may wonder why in a country that receives more sunlight than is necessary do we need to undergo a Vitamin D test. As it turns out Vitamin D deficiency is one of the biggest problems in India. Think of it, how many hours do you really spend in the sun? Most of the time you are cooped up behind a desk in an air-conditioned office and the only time you probably get some sun is when you step out for a smoke (and no that doesn’t count) or a meeting. Vitamin D is key in helping maintain strong bones and protecting against cancer. People with low levels of Vitamin D tend to have a higher risk of suffering a heart attack. And what is troubling is that most people don’t even know they need to watch out for this. So get that test done right away and find out for yourself.