Looking inside your body
You should not go wild with too many blood tests. A complete blood count (CBC) and a comprehensive metabolic panel (CMP) can give us the essential insides about your metabolic health and clues about deficiencies and dysfunctions of different body systems.
Standard versus functional lab ranges
In functional medicine and nutrition, we look at lab results differently than conventional medicine and apply tighter ranges than the lab values. Standard reference ranges are based on a population’s average. But with general health deteriorating and the number of metabolic unfit individuals on the rise, normal lab ranges don’t reflect health but rather the absence of disease. In contrast, looking at blood tests through a functional lens we can reveal patterns and trends pointing at imbalances such as blood sugar dysregulation, nutrient deficiencies, digestive irregularities, and metabolic health.
The highs and lows of blood sugar
An optimal fasting glucose range is 75-90 mg/dL. This biomarker gives a snapshot of glucose metabolism. Still, additional labs are needed to see the big picture, such as HbA1c, which reflects average glucose levels over the last three months and gives a more accurate picture. One of the most potent blood tests for metabolic health is the fasting insulin test. Unfortunately, it is not included in standard care. It is one of the best predictors of insulin resistance and prediabetes. High glucose is a silent killer as fatigue or brain fog appear later on the spectrum between elevated blood glucose levels and full-blown diabetes.
A great start to better understand your metabolic health is using a continuous glucose monitor showing how you react to different food and if your blood sugar is stable at night.