Know Your Numbers

Post by: Erika Rauk, MS, RD, LN – Performance + Fitness Lab

When you look at your body from the outside you probably have so much to say, but how well do you know the inside?  How healthy are your arteries, organs, muscles, eyes, etc.? Are your blood pressure, cholesterol, and waist circumference below normal?

To learn about your health, call your doctor and set a time for an annual physical.  Ask to have your blood drawn each year.  If any of your blood tests are abnormal it’s time to make lifestyle changes.  Luckily, health is connected to what you eat and how much you move each day among other factors. Let’s take the quiz below to see how you are doing?

Quick Health Quiz: 

So, how did you score on the quiz?  If you reported YES on all the quiz questions, then you are doing well, give yourself a pat on the back. Now take another look at your numbers, are you close to the maximum values or much lower? If you are not close to the maximum values, maybe focus on another indicator of health that we have not discussed, there is always room for improvement. If you are closer to the max values, it is still a very good idea to seek help in making lifestyle changes before you reach these limits.  If you are already over the maximums, it is important that you talk with your doctor.   

The doctor will explain what your values mean and help you decide on a course of action that is right for you. Ask your doctor to evaluate how much exercise you can safely participate in each day, and start exercising as soon as your doctor says it is safe. Exercising by yourself could be intimidating and maybe a little monotonous. As you add to your team of health care professionals maybe even meet with a personal trainer to help you devise a schedule and keep your workouts entertaining. Another hurdle you may feel you are facing is what to do in the kitchen for your health. Making time to discuss your diet with a registered dietitian can assist with clearing these hurdles with grace, ease, and kitchen time well spent.  The diet changes they can inspire you with will assist in lowering your cholesterol, blood glucose, blood pressure, and/or decreasing your weight. 

The combination of a healthy diet and exercise is crucial for improving your health.  Do not waste any of your precious time and make changes as soon as you can. 

“It is health that is real wealth...” - Gandhi

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