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Measuring My Health: Lab Tests & Data Points I Track

Written by Joe Cohen, BS | Last updated:

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Lab Tests I Track

Cardiovascular and kidney health are two of the most important areas in health in terms of the scale of mortality. Also, they are easily trackable and you can slow down the disease progression by quite a lot through supplements and lifestyle. I can feel amazing, but you don’t necessarily feel that you are getting cardiovascular or kidney disease.

Most of the time, people only find out very late in their development. For example, 9/10 people with kidney disease don’t know they have it – and 1/7 adults in the US have it.

This list is not exhaustive, but these are the tests that I like to measure more often – ideally every 4 months.

General Health:

  • Weight
  • Blood Pressure – CVD, Kidney –  blood pressure cuff
  • HRV – Oura
  • Heart rate – Apple watch
  • Sleep length & quality (REM, Deep) -through Oura and Apple Watch
  • Oxygen %
  • Urinary pH – Longevity
  • Ketones

Complete Blood Count (CBC):

Glucose control/insulin sensitivity:

  • Fasting Glucose – Diabetes, CVD
  • HbA1C – Diabetes, CVD
  • Insulin – CVD
  • Fructosamine – only needs to be tested once

Blood minerals:

Inflammation:

  • Hs-CRP – CVD, Kidney
  • Ferritin

Lipids/Lipoproteins/Cardiac:

  • Triglycerides
  • LP(A)/Lipoprotein(a) – CVD, Kidney (casual and marker)
  • APOB – CVD
  • LDL-C – CVD, Kidney
  • VLDL – CVD
  • HDL
  • LDL particle number and size – CVD
  • LP-PLA2 – CVD
  • Homocysteine – CVD2, Kidney
  • OxPL-apoB (Oxidized phospholipids)

Hormones:

  • Total Testosterone
  • Free Testosterone
  • DHT
  • DHEAS – CVD, Kidney
  • SHBG
  • Estradiol
  • Cortisol – CVD
  • Free T3 – CVD
  • Total T3 – Thyroid, Kidney, CVD
  • Total T4
  • Free T4
  • TSH
  • IGF1 – Kidney
  • Prolactin
  • LH
  • FSH
  • Aldosterone
  • VIP

Kidney:

Liver:

STD panel:

  • HIV
  • Chlamydia
  • Syphilis
  • HSV

Pancreas:

Nutrients (serum):

  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Folate
  • B12
  • Vitamin D
  • Selenium – Kidney
  • Chromium – Kidney
  • Molybdenum
  • B1/Thiamine
  • B2/Riboflavin
  • B3/Nicotinic Acid
  • Biotin
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K
  • Lithium
  • Cortisol

Heavy Metals:

  • Lead
  • Arsenic
  • Cadmium
  • Mercury
  • Aluminum

Muscle:

  • Creatine Kinase
  • LDH
  • Myoglobin

Antibodies/Autoimmunity:

  • Anti-TPO
  • Anti-Tg
  • ANA
  • Rheumatoid factor
  • IgA
  • IgE
  • IgG
  • IgM
  • Complement C3

Less frequent tests:

  • VO2 max
  • Bone density (Dexa scan)
  • TMAO – CVD
  • oxLDL – CVD
  • Carnitine
  • Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) – CVD
  • von Willebrand factor
  • Parathyroid hormone
  • Fibrinogen
  • NT-proBNP
  • Circulating amino acids – glycine, alanine, glutamine, lysine, leucine, etc.
  • Sperm motility
  • Ankle–brachial pressure index

Qualitative Measures That I Track

I keep a close eye on these metrics, many of which are qualitative, but I am still quite aware of all of these.

Make sure to check this post on 10 essential blood tests to get.

Sleep quality

  • Time it takes to fall asleep
  • Number of midnight wakings
  • Waking up feeling refreshed

Cognitive function

  • Reasoning – my day involves a lot of reasoning
  • Reading comprehension – my day involves a lot of reading comprehension
  • Verbal ability (including number of filler words used)
  • Attention – I need to be focused in the day
  • Alertness
  • Working memory (including keeping track of volleyball scores)
  • Memory – I am required to memorize a lot of information

Mood

  • General mood
  • Anxiety
  • Stress tolerance
  • Insecurity
  • Negative thoughts
  • Anxious behaviors – including how much I fiddle with hair, nails, eyebrows, lip biting, etc…)

Energy

  • Energy levels
  • Motivation
  • Sex drive
  • Exercise tolerance
  • Exercise performance
  • Stamina

Gut health

  • Bloating
  • Flatulence
  • Flatulence smell

Other

  • Frequency of infections or feeling close to getting one and recovery length
  • White hairs
  • Wrinkles
  • Tinea versicolor infection

About the Author

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen, BS

As a kid, Joe suffered from inflammation, brain fog, fatigue, digestive problems, mood and other issues that were poorly understood in both conventional and alternative medicine. Frustrated by the lack of good information and tools, Joe decided to embark on a journey of self-experimentation and self-learning to improve his health--something that has since become known as “biohacking”. With thousands of experiments and pubmed articles under his belt, Joe founded SelfHacked, the resource that was missing when he needed it. SelfHacked now gets millions of monthly readers. Joe is a thriving entrepreneur, author and speaker. He is the CEO and founder of SelfDecode. His mission is to help people gain access to the most up-to-date, unbiased, and science-based ways to optimize their health.

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