However you feel about the number of tests doctors seem to prescribe these days, I believe you should make it a point to undergo some preventive health checks yourself to be on the safe side.
This is for a few reasons. The most important one is that in many cases, symptoms of illness or disorders only become visible after the disease has taken firm root in your body. This means if you wait for symptoms to appear before doing these tests, you’ll lose valuable time.
Secondly, modern diagnostics tests can be very accurate and pick up early signs of any disease, giving you full opportunity to reverse it, even cancer.
Third, lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure need to be managed immediately. If not, they could lead to serious complications such as heart attacks, kidney failure or a stroke and paralysis.
Here are the most important preventive health tests for women:
Blood sugar tests: Readings taken over three months will give you a complete picture of high levels of sugar while they are still in the pre-diabetic stage, so you can manage them before you become diabetic.
Lipid profile: This is a profile of blood fats (lipids) which tells you about imbalances in cholesterols and triglycerides, to help you control these early contributors to heart disease.
Haemoglobin and general blood counts: To help detect anaemia at early stages and rebuild the blood count.
Thyroid tests: To spot low thyroid levels and correct them immediately.
Pap test: To pick up early signs of tumours in the female reproductive system (cervix).
Kidney function tests: To spot early signs of a weak kidney that can be managed with lifestyle and diet changes.
Liver function tests: These note even very small changes in liver functions, which can be easily corrected with lifestyle and diet changes.
(Men – you’ll have your own list of preventive health tests next week.)
From HT Brunch, July 17, 2016
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