The task for week 45 was to do an at home blood test. We picked the Thriva baseline test as it offers a good insight into your overall health.
Within this age of technology we now find ourself in, it's getting easier to understand our bodies and our own health. Almost everyones phones can track their daily step count, there are apps to help meditate, there are apps to help manage your sleep and wake you up in a light sleep phase. There are apps which have been approved as contraception. There are apps for therapy. And it's really quite a revolutionary period for managing your health on a really basic level. Of course this stuff will never replace doctors, medical professionals or real people but it can help streamline that process so you get care when you need it, from people who really understand what's going on. Of course it's also not exactly necessary, people have functioned for a really long time without any of these things but it can be helpful. We are living longer, the global population is growing and the demand for care is growing stronger with ageing populations. So being able to be preventative enables us to take some pressure off our healthcare systems and look after ourselves. Which is in part why we're here making Sagitta happen.
With the Thriva test we used the baseline subscription which measures your cholesterol levels, your vitamin D, your liver function and your iron levels. Recently they've added in vitamin B12 measuring in too which is really great. Here are some of the things you can prevent by understanding your body with this test:
- Having high cholesterol can lead to cardiovascular disease including coronary heart disease and stroke. It's also been linked to diabetes and high blood pressure.
- Having a low level of vitamin D can lead to bone pain, muscle weakness and even without these it's been linked to cancer, cognitive impairment in older adults, and again increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Being low in Iron can lead to tiredness and lack of energy, you can become short of breath and have noticeable heart palpitations. Lack of iron can impact the immune system negatively. It could also lead to problems with your heart and lungs. And could cause harm during pregnancy.
- You liver function is important to break down food, clean your blood, make proteins and store energy. If your liver isn't working well a lot of things could go wrong, and the signs could show up as skin could yellow and your speech could slur.
- Vitamin B12 helps with a lot of things in the body including keeping your nervous system happy. It's important to supplement B12 as a vegetarian or vegan as it's usually derived from animal produce. Studies have found that long term lack of it can result in neurological problems alongside a few other things.
I've already done two of these tests in the last year and on the first one I discovered that my cholesterol was too high, and my vitamin D levels were too low. I was really surprised by my cholesterol and knowing this information has meant I've been able to take steps toward reducing that and I have managed to get myself into a healthy range now. Without doing this test I would never have know. Being able to see what's going on inside of your body on paper is very motivating in terms of dealing with potential problems and really understanding what's going on under the surface.
And all it takes is a simple finger prick (or three), filling a small vile with your blood and posting it to a lab. You get the results the next day. Easy peasy.
HOW DID IT GO?
The first time I did one of these tests I almost fainted because I'm a wimp around blood. But I did it. The second time I was prepared but no blood wanted to come out of my finger so I had to do two jabs. This time... well I'm sure you've seen in the video if you watched it. It was the third time lucky with jabbing of the hands. Honestly it's not too bad once you've done it, or if you're used to blood but in the moment it can feel a bit nuts. But the kind of nuts that you know is beneficial to you.
The great thing about doing this test is that as soon as I knew my result I knew what was going on inside of me and it has enabled me to get my body into a healthier place so I can't recommend this enough. Definitely do it if you want a picture painted of where your health is at right now. I'm pretty pleased with my results, I know I need to research supplements and see what I can do to up my Vitamin D & B12 levels and the next time I do this test I can look into doing a blood count as the GP who fed back also recommended to do that. It's been such an amazing thing to be able to put my own health in my hands.