Are You Metabolically Healthy?
When Americans are asked if they are metabolically healthy 75% of them will answer yes.
However, a recent study done at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health showed that the metabolic health of Americans is “alarmingly low”. In fact, in the study of over 8700 individuals, the researchers found that only 12% of Americans were metabolically healthy. That means over 1 in 8 or 88% have some degree of cardiometabolic dysfunction. Cardiometabolic dysfunction is based on elevations of blood sugar and insulin, triglycerides, lipids, or blood pressure. The study researchers claimed several reasons for the findings but one of the most remarkable was that less than 37% were aware of their personal findings despite having regular care.
Many patients feel they are fine because their annual bloodwork was considered normal.
But a deeper look can often uncover dysfunctions years before a diagnosis. If detailed testing is not done patients usually do not know there is a problem brewing until they develop symptoms or are ultimately diagnosed with a disease when levels exceed thresholds. For example, when a patient goes to their annual exam and gets bloodwork, they usually get a biometric panel.
This panel is a basic screening tool and normal ranges are based on the average American population, which for the most part do not define health. If indices on the biometric panel are out of range of diagnosis of the disease is made. At that point, interventions are harder to manage and medication is offered.
When we look deeper into metabolic health and consider more in-depth screening interventions can be made before the diagnosis of disease. For example, checking a fasting insulin level, which only costs a few dollars, is rarely done in conventional offices but when abnormal it can diagnosis pre-diabetes or metabolic disturbances up to 10 years prior to a diabetes diagnosis. It seems obvious to be doing these tests sooner than later.
Markers of metabolic dysfunction include excess body weight, especially centrally located, blood pressures higher than 130/80, elevated lipids, or elevated fasting glucose over 90. Early symptoms of metabolic dysfunction may include malaise, weight gain, erectile dysfunction, irregular periods, brain fog, and even anxiety and depression. Patients often do not consider looking at metabolic health when presented with these symptoms.
The Cardiometabolic program helps individuals look deeper into their metabolic health by looking at markers that are precursors form dysfunction.
Since many individuals are unaware of these root causes, they consider themselves free of risk or future disease. Unfortunately, the statistics show this is not true. Addressing metabolic dysfunction early and reversing the abnormalities can change the course of disease development.
The program includes an in-depth look at the markers which are not done in traditional offices. With these results, patients are then educated on how to address any abnormalities, specifically through diet and lifestyle interventions, supplements, and education. The program is presented in a group format which has been shown to be especially beneficial because the interaction in a healthy environment can help individuals find a greater level of healing and overall health.