Medical Evaluation for Fitness Program
The medical evaluation tied to our fitness program is different than most evaluations and physicals done by physicians around the globe. It is exhaustive and complete. If you have never had a thorough medical exam, then you will be shocked after reviewing the detailed medical evaluation that we perform. Read more below to find out why we perform these advanced tests.
Why is the medical evaluation important?
The medical evaluation is essential to your health since it individualizes your risks. The testing will give your medical team information of what areas we need to focus on the most, and how much time we have to fix certain problems. It also gives us information on how to peak your metabolic functions and processes with appropriate supplementation. Instead of giving everyone the same cocktail of vitamins, we can recommend individualized supplementation based on your labs and ancillary testing. Also, metabolic disturbances can hinder your progress and prevent you from achieving goals.
Our exam includes a thorough medical, social, and family history to identify your individual potential health risks. We determine your level of genetic risks based on your family’s cancer history. If needed, we can order necessary tests to determine if you have mutations for BRCA (brack-uh) and Lynch Syndrome (Hereditary Non-Polyposis Colon Cancer). These tests are easily obtained via a blood specimen.
In addition to the detailed medical history, we perform a comprehensive physical examination from head to toe. During this detailed history, additional lab tests and imaging studies are created in addition to the ones listed below. These additional tests may shed light on a health risk that you did not previously know about.
Blood Work / Labs:
Afterwards, an exhaustive blood panel is drawn to evaluate all of your risk markers: Cholesterol panel, fish oil levels, inflammation levels, vitamin levels, complete thyroid panel, diabetes panel, MTHFR testing, and many more. Any additional labs that you would like ordered can be added during this time.
Balancing your hormones is essential to feeling energetic and achieving goals. Our physicians are trained to evaluate all of the hormonal systems, including thyroid, adrenal, sexual, and growth hormone levels. You should feel confident that our physicians know how to analyze the detailed thyroid panel, including investigating for Hashimoto antibodies and Reverse T3. We will evaluate your testosterone levels and other sexual hormones in both men and women. We can also assess for growth hormone insufficiency. Arguably, evaluating your growth hormone levels may be the most important part of your medical evaluation. If you have inadequate growth hormone, you are predisposed to poor muscle recovery, inadequate weight loss, poor sleep, low energy, and high visceral fat. Growth hormone insufficiency can be replaced with Sermorelin, GHRP2, and GHRP6 peptides.
Your cardiovascular system is your most important and delicate asset. Name one bodily system that does not use blood to perform its function. Exactly. All bodily functions require blood flow, and the cardiovascular system is the only one that you have for getting adequate blood flow to those areas. Therefore, we analyze the individual intricacies of the system. Do not be fooled: there is not a singular test that evaluates your entire cardiovascular system. Instead, we use multiple tests like pieces of a puzzle to determine your cardiovascular system’s overall wellbeing.
Blood Vessel Health: Your blood vessel health can be gauged using Nitric Oxide testing and Carotid Thickness Testing (CIMT).
Nitric Oxide Testing: This is performed via a salivary test. Yes, we will be collecting spit from you. Healthy individuals create plenty of nitric oxide throughout the day, which causes blood vessels to dilate and relax (good). Without this molecule, blood vessels get thicker and harder over time (bad). Eventually, these blood vessels starving for nitric oxide scar and morph into plaque, which is difficult to reverse. By restoring your nitric oxide levels with appropriate supplementation, nutrition, and exercise, your blood vessels can reverse their signs of aging. Nitric oxide boosting is also extremely useful for fitness programs as it allows your muscles to receive more needed blood flow during strenuous exercise. You might notice that after replacing your nitric oxide levels that you are able to push yourself harder.
This video is an exerpt from the documentary “Forks Over Knives.” Dr. Campbell explains Nitric Oxide and endothelial function succinctly and beautifully. The graphics associated with his explanation will help you understand the importance of Nitric Oxide.
Carotid Thickness Testing: This test is performed using an ultrasound to evaluate the carotid artery that delivers blood through your neck to your brain. As blood vessels age, plaque builds up and the walls of the blood vessel expands. The ultrasound determines the thickness of this large blood vessel and compares you to other patients of your age group. Hopefully, your carotid artery appears younger than others your age!
Heart Electrical Activity: The heart’s electrical activity is evaluated by an EKG. An EKG is performed by placing stickers across your chest, arms, and legs. Our physicians interpret the electrical activity on the EKG in order to determine if the electrical conduction system is fully functioning. The EKG can also detect silent heart attacks as well as new heart attacks.
Heart Pumping Function: The heart’s pumping function is evaluated by an Echocardiogram. It detects how well the heart is beating by determining the ejection fraction, which is a measurement of how much blood is pushed out of the heart with each heartbeat. If the heart is pumping well, then it will eject 50-70% of its contents. An echocardiogram will also assess your valve status – are any of the valves leaking?
Blood Flow to the Heart: This is probably the most important information that you can gather. If your heart does not have appropriate blood flow, then it will eventually fail. The heart can fail quickly from multiple heart attacks or slowly from heart failure. Both conditions are terrible, and we want to delay their progress as long as possible. The blood flow of the heart is difficult to measure; however, we can determine if you are at risk for poor blood flow by performing a stress test. Our stress test is performed using a bicycle of increasing resistance to push your heart to its maximal rate. If your EKG does not show any electrical abnormalities at maximal heart rate, then your blood flow is considered sufficient. Note: This test does not show that you are at risk for heart attacks until your blood vessels are moderately affected. However, it will tell you whether or not you are healthy enough for exercise.