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Can I order my own blood tests?

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Yes, with the exception of a few states, consumers can order their own lab tests.  This process is sometimes referred to as Direct Access Testing (DAT) and allows consumers to order discount lab tests online.

Will I understand the test results?

Many worry if they order their own blood tests that they will not be able to understand what the results really mean. Nowadays, the blood test results includes the reference ranges and the individual’s test result.  Each test is annotated if any results are outside the normal reference values.  Ordering and receiving your own lab tests are not the same as getting medical advice.  It is always recommended that an individual review and initiate a discussion with their health provider to explain those results.

See a Typical Lab Test Result for a Comprehensive Health Profile

 

How do you Order Your Own Blood Test?

  1. Go to www.HealthOneLabs.com
  2. Click on Tests Offered to view available tests
  3. Select a test and Add to your Shopping Cart
  4. Open a secure account on our server and use the secure check-out process
  5. You’ll receive the lab requisition form within two hours and take it to a lab location near you.

Results for different tests range in time on when they will become available, check at the bottom of the description to see what the turnaround time is for the test you want to order. You will receive an email that will notify you when these results are available.

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Signs your thyroid may be slowing you down

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The thyroid is a large ductless gland in your neck that produces hormones.  The thyroid gland is controlled by the pituitary gland and hypothalamus, so disorders of these tissues could also affect thyroid function.  The inter connectivity of the hormones, organs and the brain must be in sync for optimal performance.  If one of the portions of the equation is not working properly, you could have symptoms of a thyroid disorder.

Low levels of the thyroid hormone could cause various symptoms such as dry skin, changes in your hair, brittle nails, constipation, fatigue, and aches/pains. If low levels of this hormone remain untreated, it can increase the likelihood high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. Women have increased chances of having thyroid issues than men, especially as they get older.

In some cases, symptoms can be gradual and not very noticeable, and in other cases symptoms can be abrupt within a few weeks or months. Symptoms can include exhaustion, depression, constipation, muscle aches, cardiovascular effects, cold intolerance, and appetite loss. Please consult a physician if you experience any of these symptoms. Hypothyroidism is typically treated with a daily dose of synthetic hormone, in pill form, and essentially does the job of your thyroid. Usually, people with hypothyroidism experience a substantial symptom relief after starting this treatment.

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Steady state cardio was the norm for a lot of people when they worked out, however in the recent years High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has become increasingly popular. HIIT is when you perform your exercise for about 30 seconds at 90% to 100% capacity, meaning you will be going as hard as you can for this period of time, and then rest for 3 minutes or less. You repeat this cycle for 20-60 minutes, depending on your fitness level. HIIT burns the same amount of calories as steady state cardio, but in a shorter period of time. If you are looking get fit, the following are some important benefits that come from HIIT:

  • Betters insulin sensitivity. Your body will become less sensitive insulin, thus reducing blood glucose levels. This will cause the exercising muscles in your body to use glucose for fuel much more efficiently.
  • Can improve heart health and lower blood pressure
  • Increases your stamina. HIIT activates aerobic and anaerobic systems, which in turn causes you to be able to perform better in your workouts.
  • Burns calories after your workout. Because HIIT forces you to work at the hardest you possibly can, it leads your body to burn calories after your workout to get your system back to the state it was before HIIT. This is called post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), or often referred to as afterburn.
  • Workout time is shorter. As mentioned previously, because you are working so hard, it’ll take you less time to get the benefits of cardio training than if you were performing steady state cardio.

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How to get better sleep

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Sleep is one of the most important factors to good health because it restores the immune system, metabolism, and physical/mental health. It is essential that you get enough sleep so that you not only feel well rested, but also get enough sleep for these functions. Many often resort to sleep medication when they cannot fall asleep, but the following are a few techniques you may want to try out before using medicine:

  1. Avoid using electronics 30-60 minutes before bed. Things such as your phone, emit blue light which is helpful during the day because it increases attention, mood and reaction time, but not very helpful when you are getting ready to go to bed. Light in general suppresses the production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep.
  2. Be sure to get rid of noise. A quiet room is important when trying to go to sleep, especially if you are a light sleeper. However, some people find that white noise, such as a fan or ocean noise, will soothe them. Try different sounds to see if it improves your sleep quality.
  3. Alter the temperature in your room, to what makes you most comfortable. Many wake up in the middle of the night because it was too cold/hot, so be sure you set the thermostat to your perfect sleeping temperature.
  4. Have a regular sleeping schedule. Having a schedule reduces the chances of getting insomnia, because the circadian sleep-wake schedule is synchronized

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It is predicted that this year there will be an increase of about 21% in Lyme Disease in the U.S. due to a growth in acorn production. Believe it or not there is definitely a relationship between acorns and Lyme Disease. Acorns are consumed by white-footed mice that often carry the blacklegged ticks and act as vectors for Lyme Disease. It is expected for Lyme Disease rates to be particularly high in the summer because the ticks are in their nymphal stage so they are harder to spot, meaning they could stay on the host for a longer period of time.

LymeDiseaseIf you believe that you are showing any symptoms or signs of Lyme Disease it is important that you speak to your physician and get tested. You may order a Lyme Disease blood test on our website www.healthonelabs.com for $89.99.


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I have an Abnormal CBC, Now what?

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A Complete Blood Count (CBC) checks your white blood cell count, red blood cell count, hemoglobin, hematocrit, platelet count, lymphocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, and eosinophils. An abnormal CBC result can mean many things and your doctor may want additional testing, in conjunction with a physical exam, to determine why your results are out of range:

  • Abnormal white blood cell count could mean that you have a virus, so your doctor could ask you to get a strep test or a test for mononucleosis. There is also a chance you may have inflammation so your doctor may want a Sedimentation Rate (ESR) or C-Reactive Protein (CRP) test to help pinpoint the issue.
  • An out of range red blood cell count mean may warrant a vitamin B12 and folate, and/or a reticulocyte test to determine if there is anemia
  • Abnormal platelet results may require you to get tests to further assess your platelet count such as a platelet function test. There is also a probability that you have a bleeding or excessive clotting disorder

test tube blood

There may be other reasons why your CBC test came back with some abnormal results like leukemia, or other bone marrow disorder, despite being rare, so it is important that you speak to your physician about your results.

Take control of your health!  Order your own discount blood lab tests at www.HealthOneLabs.com and stay healthy.


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With vacation time in full swing, it is time to ensure you remain healthy before, during and after your vacation.  You want to make the most out of this time, so it is important you stay healthy through some easy actions.

www.HealthOneLabs.comThe following are some tips and precautions for enjoying a healthy vacation:

  1. Before you go you should ask your physician if you need any immunization boosters – ie. tetanus.
  2. If you are headed for an exotic destination in the tropics or developing countries you may want to research if there are any immunizations (like hepatitis A or yellow fever) or medicines you take as a precaution, or have them with you in case you get sick.  The State Department has ample information on travel vaccines.
  3. You can ease jet lag by going to bed 2 hours later(if you are traveling west) and 2 hours earlier(if you are traveling east) each night
  4. About 30 to 70 percent of people who travel to developing countries get traveler’s diarrhea(TD) so you can ask your doctor for antibiotics in case this happens. Also try to avoid raw foods, street fare, ice and unbottled water
  5. Hotels and motels are the most common places to get bed bugs. Places that look rundown and outdated are less vigilant about treating rooms so you are more like to get bed bugs. However, luxury hotels are also prone to bed bug issues so be aware of what to look for before climbing into the bed.  Do keep clothing and luggage off the floors
  6. Remember to stay hydrated. Being on vacation isn’t like your normal routine so you have to drink more water to stay hydrated. You should aim to drink 9 to 13 cups of fluids
  7. Pack all medications in their original packaging in case so the medication can be quickly identified in an emergency or if necessary.
  8. In case you run out of medications or need medical attention be aware of where the local doctor and pharmacy are located at your destination.
  9. Program your cell phone to have someone listed as an Emergency Contact so medical personnel can contact your designated person to assist if required.
  10. Find ways to add exercise while on your vacation – it can be as easy as walking instead of driving, renting a bike or taking a hike nearby.  Have a sense of adventure.

Safe travels!

 


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Omega-3 Fatty Acids

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Whenever people think of fats they automatically assume they’re not good for them, but that’s not always the case. There are well known healthy fats and they are called unsaturated fats. Unsaturated fats are either monounsaturated and polyunsaturated and they help decrease disease risk. Omega-3 fatty acids are an example of the healthy fats. They are a crucial for your health and development, but your body does not produce it so the only way to get it is by consuming foods high in Omega 3s.They can be found in sardines, salmon, anchovies, and herring.

omega 3 imageIt can help reduce risk for cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, and depression. Fish also contains proteins, selenium, and vitamin D that are beneficial for the body. It is important to get a good ratio of Omega-3 and Omega-6 which is another essential fatty acid. You should aim to eat a bit more of Omega-3s because it helps reduce inflammation and Omega-6s promote inflammation. It is recommended you get at least 2 servings of fish and 1 serving of oily (dark meat) fish.

Need to know if you are getting sufficient fatty acids?  Test your levels.

Take Control of your Health!


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hospital sign

The following are some tips and precautions you can take when going to the hospital to prevent infections and stay safe:

  1. Before going to the hospital, if possible, research the risks of infections and mortality rate compared to other hospitals in your area. This data is published and can found via an internet search.
  2. You may want to bring a friend or a family member to help you ask questions you have and/or take notes on directions and explanations the medical staff may be telling you. Research shows if you go to the hospital accompanied you are more likely to be treated better by medical staff. Having someone keep you company can be very helpful when there is reduced staff at the hospital.
  3. Write down notes so that you can recall directions doctors or nurses may give you.
  4. Make sure you and everybody that comes into your room has washed their hands with water and soap, hand sanitizers do not kill all bacteria such as C. diff.
  5. Bring sanitizing wipes to clean rails, controls, phones, etc. You can also ask your room to be cleaned if it is messy when you arrived
  6. If you had surgery your doctor will have to check your incisions to see if they are healing properly, but by opening the bandage you are exposing your wound to various infections. Before going into to surgery you can ask your surgeon if he is able to skin glue as opposed to staples and waterproof dressings(last about 3 weeks without opening) which will reduce chances of infection.
  7. Ask everyday if you still require IVs and urinary catheters, the longer they are in the higher the infection risk is
  8. Delay surgery if you have an infection. You should wait until the infection is resolved before you have surgery because it could cause another infection or even worsen the current infection.
  9. It is often necessary to remove hair from the surgical site, and it is important for the nurse to use electric trimmers as opposed to razors because they provide an opening for bacteria
  10. If possible, before going to the hospital call and ask if you should take precautions such as bathing with a special soap or using antiseptic wipes.

Take control of your health!  Order you own lab tests at www.HealthOneLabs.com


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Why You Should Try to Avoid Antibiotics

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Winter is here which means you might get the flu, a cold or a sinus infection and you will most likely just go to your doctor to prescribe you antibiotics. It is important to know that antibiotics are very powerful medication and shouldn’t be taken unless you have a bacterial infection that does not clear up on its own. The truth is that antibiotics actually don’t work against viral infections such as the cold or flu. Taking antibiotics when you don’t really need them can cause them not to work in the future when you do really need them. Not to mention the fact that antibiotics have many possible deadly allergic reactions and side effects. It is important to try to avoid antibiotics if possible, here are a few ways of doing so:

antibiotics image

  • If you have a cold or the flu ask your doctor for over-the-counter pain relievers, throat soothers, and/or decongestants to ease your symptoms
  • Just because you have an infection caused by bacteria doesn’t necessarily mean you need antibiotics. If your symptoms are mild, ask your physician if you can delay the treatment for a few days because in many cases you may be able to fight off the infection without antibiotics
  • Avoid broad spectrum antibiotics because they kill off all bacteria in your body including the protective kind.
  • You can ask your physician to only prescribe you antibiotics for the shortest amount of time possible. A lot of the time treatments don’t have to be as long.
  • If antibiotics are unavoidable, watch out for any possible side effects.  Be sure to read the informative pamphlet that accompanies your prescription.

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