First they pricked my finger…

Every six months my workplace holds a Health Screening.  You can sign-up online for an appointment – pick your 15 minute time slot – and viola.  Testing includes Lipid profile (Total Cholesterol, HDL, LDL, and Triglycerides), Blood Pressure, Glucose, Height & Weight, Waist Circumference, and Body Fat Percentage.

After signing the medical consent form, they prick your finger!  It is a tiny prick, because they only need about 4 drops of blood to run their analysis.  While you wait for the results, you are sent around each of the stations getting poked and prodded like cattle.  Just kidding – it is all very painless.  And then you are pulled aside with a nurse to review your results.

So – am I healthy?  See my numbers below.

Total Cholesterol: 181 (Desirable level < 200)
Triglycerides: 69 (Desirable level < 150)
HDL Cholesterol: 66 (Desirable level > 40)
LDL Cholesterol: 101 (Desirable level < 130)
TC/HDL Ratio: 2.7 (Desirable level < 4.5)
Glucose: 90 (Desirable level < 100)

  • LDL (low density lipoprotein cholesterol, also called “bad” cholesterol) – can build up on the walls of your arteries and increase your chances of getting heart disease
  • HDL (high density lipoprotein cholesterol, also called “good” cholesterol) – protects against heart disease by taking the “bad” cholesterol out of your blood and keeping it from building up in your arteries
  • Triglycerides  (fats carried in the blood from the food we eat) – excess calories, alcohol, or sugar in the body are converted into triglycerides and stored in fat cells throughout the body

Blood Pressure: 121/75 (Desirable level <120/80)

Waist: 34 inches

Body Fat Percentage: 27.3%

Now – this last measurement was a bit of a let down considering all the healthy eating choices and working out I am doing.  However – I was at 29% during my last screening.  For my age group (25-29), my current % lands in the “Fair” category (25.1-30), and if I want to get into the “Good” category, I would have to drop down to between 22.1-25.0%.   At least this gives me something to work towards over the next 6 months until the next screening!

Have you measured your health lately?

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