A couple weeks ago I mentioned that I got a blood test, and I got the results when I had a check-up with my doctor last week. Good news- I don’t have Lyme Disease!
Before I go into the rest of my results, a little about my diet and supplementation. As far as supplements go, I am taking:
- Calcium + D (1 tablet instead of the serving size of 2) = 600mg Calcium + 125IU Vit D
- 1200mg Fish Oil
- B-1 (100mg)
- B-2 (100mg)
- Niacin (100mg)
- B-6 (100mg)
- Folic Acid (400 mcg)
- B-12 (100mcg)
- Biotin (100mcg)
- Pantothenic Acid (100mg)
- Para aminobenzoic acid (25mg)
- Choline (10mg)
- Insitol (25mg)
- 500mg Magnesium
- 2000IU Vit D (added after I got the results of my blood work)
My diet consists of a lot of eggs cooked in Kerrygold butter, meat like beef, chicken, fish, and shellfish, lots of fat like olive oil, coconut oil, and butter, all kinds of veggies like loaded salads, kale, broccoli & cauliflower, onions, garlic, peppers, tomatoes, seaweed, etc. I eat nuts occasionally but in excess they seem to bother my stomach. I add sunflower seeds to salads sometimes, and I eat cheese on salads or as a snack. As far as starches go, we make yam fries or add yams to stews, and once in a while I will have small amounts of potatoes. I roast whole chickens then make bone broth for soups.
I drink a lot of tea and seltzer, occasionally coffee. My biggest cheat is wine, but I am phasing that out now and will quit once I find out I am pregnant. Recently I have been eating a little too much milk chocolate- I need to get rid of the tempting sweets completely because I have no self-control around it! I also cheat for a cookie sometimes, or a crust of the bread at a restaurant (but only if it’s hot and super delicious looking).
Back to the blood test, I was interested to see how my diet and supplements translated to my blood work. Here are the results that I think are notable:
My Vitamin D levels were low… 18 ng/mL when sufficient range is 30-100. I was a bit confused because I take a Calcium + D supplement, but I checked it when I got home and learned something. My supplement has only 250 IU of Vitamin D per serving, and a serving size is 2 tablets. I had only been taking one tablet per day and not getting much sun since I sit in an office all day, so of course it was low! I went to the supermarket immediately and bought 2000 IU Vitamin D capsules. I have actually noticed that I haven’t had as many headaches since I started taking more D- not sure if it’s related, but glad to have solved that problem!
I don’t eat processed food, but I do pour salt on practically everything I eat, so it’s cool to see that my sodium levels are perfect- 141, and the ref. range is 134-146. Chris Kresser has been doing a whole series on his blog about “Shaking Up the Salt Myth” about how salt is actually a necessary part of the diet, and how too little dietary salt can be a problem. Of course there are situations where salt restriction is helpful, but if you are eating a whole foods diet then you may want to add some salt to your food.
My calcium level was 9.7 mg/dl – the ref. range is 8.4-10.6. I actually wonder what this would be if I didn’t supplement? I don’t drink milk, but I eat a little cheese and lots of leafy greens. I wonder if it would still be in the normal range without the supplement? I am taking 600mg, which is supposedly 60% of the daily recommendation, meaning I am getting a bunch from dietary sources as well.
My total cholesterol is 199, and under 200 is recommended. According to the Paleo Solution by Robb Wolff, we should be shooting for total cholesterol between 120-140mg/dl, so mine is quite a bit above that. That means it is about as high as you can go without having “high cholesterol…” I hope they don’t try to put me on statins! Broken down, it’s another story.
HDL cholesterol is the good kind- it helps clean the arteries and veins, bringing fats back to the liver for processing. The recommended level is above 39 mg/dl, mine is 73! That means I have lots of good cholesterol shuttling the fat where it needs to be. I guess this is the number that pushed my total cholesterol up so high!
Both my VLDL and LDL are both normal- 15.6 and 110mg/dl respectively. They both have jobs to do in the blood, but when they get too high problems can occur. I asked for particle size, but unfortunately it was not included in my report.
My triglycerides (circulating blood fats) were at 78 – less than 150 is recommended, and according to the Paleo Solution, ancestral levels were between 50-80. This means my insulin sensitivity is good, I haven’t been eating too many carbohydrates, and my cholesterol is doing its job of circulating fats in my blood! I wonder what will happen to this number when I cut out alcohol and stop eating so much darn chocolate?
This one amuses me a little bit. Conventional wisdom says that a high fat diet with lots of eggs, red meat and alcohol is a recipe for a heart attack or cardiovascular disease. Well, this is how I tend to eat and drink, and my result was 0.49mg/L. Average is 1-3, less than 1 is considered low. Maybe if people worried more about the inflammatory foods like franken-oils and gluten, and less about the animal fat and cholesterol, they might have fewer heart attacks.
It’s good to know that despite my cheating, I am healthy, and I am glad that I found out about the Vit D issue so I could correct it! Now that I have a better understanding of the numbers, I am looking forward to tracking how they change throughout the years and depending on my lifestyle at the time.