Archive for February 19th, 2013

X Factor

Retro Singer

Come, on, admit it, you watched at least one episode of American Idol or some other mutation of it, right?  Okay, okay, me to.  Did you ever notice the people with a certain ‘it’ quality — that X factor that seemed to transcend their singing ability?  Actually, the word ‘x factor’ is considered a noun and defined as a special talent or quality.  It’s also described as a “variable in a situation that could have the most significant impact on the outcome” according to dictionary​.com.  Even though most of us don’t possess the pipes to become the next singing sensation, there is a nutritional x factor that will make us all winners!

Health Screening 101 (Part 1 of 3)

Health Screening 101 (part 1 of 3 series)

Health Screening 101: Blood Testing (Part 1)

Without a better understanding of Health Screening Tests, looking at blood screening paperwork can be both overwhelming as well as invoke attitudes of apathy for borderline healthy /​ unhealthy numbers. Here is an email from an officer who is 33 years old who admits he needs to lose a few pounds, but is concerned with his recent blood work numbers:

Stew, I know you are not a doctor, but can you give me your opinion on these numbers? The left column is my most recent numbers from last week (Nov 2012) and the numbers on the right are the ranges I should be in to be considered healthy. I know I need to eat better, exercise, and get more sleep, but where do I start? Should I be overly-​​concerned and start taking medication to deal with this?

Wow, great question. I too get overwhelmed when I look at all the different blood test elements and ranges when some are good, bad, or borderline. And, yes, I am not a doctor, but I know several and have interviewed them to help me write this response to your questions. But to help demonstrate where you need to focus, we are going to use the TRAFFIC LIGHT System created by Specialty Health in Reno NV, to help drive home the importance and understanding of these scores as everyone thoroughly understands the standard traffic light: