Health Markers for Optimal Living

Taking care of your body is not just about being ripped year round. By tracking certain health markers we improve vitality, performance, longevity and quality of life. These health markers give us an indication of whether our health is where it needs to be and what needs work. The first step is to get some blood work done (I get mine done by Bioniq once every 3-4 months). Once we have the results here are, what I believe, are some of the most important ones to look at:

Triglycerides to HDL Ratio (TC/HDL): Triglycerides is basically fat floating through your blood stream, too much of if leads to heart disease and stroke. HDL cholesterol protects you against those conditions so ideally we want that ratio as low as possible. The higher the ratio the worse your health. Anything above 4.4 is considered high and needs attention.

Here’s how to lower TC/HDL:

  1. Eat more heart-healthy foods: eliminate trans fats, eat omega 3 rich foods, more fibre, drink whey protein.
  2. Daily exercise: weight training 3 x per week, 1o000 steps daily.
  3. Stop smoking & vaping
  4. Alcohol in moderation

Fasted Glucose: It’s no secret this score dictates how close you are to becoming diabetic. The lower the number the better – a score of 5.6 to 6.9 mmol/l is considered pre diabetic.

Here’s how to lower faster glucose:

  1. Resistance training & HIIT
  2. Reduce sugar intake
  3. Drink more water
  4. Improve sleep quality
  5. Take Chromium supplement

Blood Pressure: the force at which blood is pumped around your body, lower numbers indicate blood moving freely, higher numbers mean your heart is working overtime. Any score above 120/80 requires attention.

Here’s how to lower blood pressure:

  1. Cardiovascular training: 30 minutes of cardio work everyday keeping your heart rate above 140 bpm.
  2. Quit smoking & vaping
  3. Cut out fast foods
  4. Alcohol in moderation

C-Reactive Protein (CRP): CRP is a blood protein that is increased due to inflammation. Inflammation (measured using CRP) has been linked with diabetes, heart disease & high blood pressure. The less CRP you have in your blood the better. A healthy individual will have a score 0.3 mg/dL or lower. Anything above 1.0 mg/dL indicates high levels of inflammation in the body.

Here’s how to lower CRP:

  1. Cardiovascular training: 30 minutes of cardio work everyday keeping your heart rate above 140 bpm.
  2. Quit smoking & vaping
  3. Cut out fast food
  4. Decrease waist circumference

Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH): TSH is an indictor of how well your metabolism is working. A healthy TSH score is between 0.3-4.2 mlU/l, a score above 4.2 mlU/l indicates slow thyroid function and requires attention.

Here’s to improve TSH:

  1. Cold Therapy: Cold bathing has been show to stimulate the adrenal glands which support healthy thyroid function.
  2. Exercise in the morning: both resistance training & cardio training have been shown to improve thyroid function.
  3. Iodine rich foods: seafood (highest in prawns & crayfish).
  4. Eat essential fats: eat a small portion at every meal. Things like extra virgin olive oil, flaxseed oil, raw unsalted nuts, oily fish and avocados.

Tracking these health markers can add years to you life and quality to those years. These tests give us clear results about what, in our bodies, is functioning optimally and what needs improving.