Create a Healthier Lifestyle | The Medical Side of Life

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I am still working out and despite some setbacks (attack of the stomach flu in the middle of a workout), I am feeling pretty good about my progress and training. It is still really easy to talk myself out of a trip to the gym, but I often go anyway now.

Check-up Time

Yesterday, I did what needed to be done and went to the doctor for a yearly. Those visits are never super-pleasant, right? I am fortunate though to have a great doctor and a great relationship with him. He has a terrific bedside manner and I am SO glad that I started going to him when I was pregnant with Captain Chaos.

Two years ago, as part of my exam they drew blood for standard screenings and it was discovered that I have high cholesterol. That? That was a bummer. The report was extremely detailed (not just a total cholesterol number) and because of that we were able to see that there was a strong liklihood that my high numbers were purely genetic. There’s a small possibility that they were/are diet related, but that’s a very slim possibility.

The Plan

We decided to try and modify my diet and I have, over the last couple of years gotten better about reading food labels, avoiding saturated fats, trans-fats, and cholesterol in my food. I take vitamins, calcium supplements, and omega-3s. I can still enjoy the occasional hamburger.

They did a blood draw yesterday to recheck my numbers. Honestly, they will likely find very little change.

The good news is this:

* We’ve caught this early. Many people don’t know what their numbers are. I do. Information is power, people!

* There are very safe, very effective, medications available for people with high-cholesterol. You know the spiel – “when diet and exercise aren’t enough…”

* I am making very real, very effective, lifestyle changes that will only make things better over time.

The Moral

Listen, we all walk around thinking that bad things only happen to other people. In the grand scheme of things, this certainly isn’t terrible. But, if you haven’t been to the doctor in YEARS, or if you don’t know your numbers, or you haven’t stopped to evaluate your heart-attack risk? You can’t make the best decisions for your health by pretending that not knowing what’s going on with your body means it must be good news. Call your doctor if you haven’t been in awhile…

Listen. I know. I was shocked as all get-out to have high cholesterol(!) diagnosed at the age of 33. That’s something you hear people over 50 talk about. The fact is, it can happen. It does happen. So, what’s your number?

P.S. I’ll update in a couple of weeks when the results come in.

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I am working towards creating a healthier lifestyle in 2012. See all of my posts here.

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