I read a fascinating piece the other day from Patrick Holford where he mentioned what he was coming to believe are the top three factors that combine in modern day to cause the most health problems. I thought you might like to hear them – and I’ve worked out tests for you that will check all three.
First, he mentions methylation. Here is what he says: “There are a billion methylation reactions in your brain and body every second. The process controls everything from making neurotransmitters like adrenaline, to turning genes on and off. It’s highly dependent on B vitamins.” The best way to test methylation is your blood homocysteine level, which is easily done. In fact, in January’s British Medical Journal, it was reported that homocysteine levels predicted no less than two thirds of cardiovascular deaths in 5 years and that this indicator is far more predictive than cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking or any combination of those factors.
Glycation is the next process he mentions. This relates to how you control blood sugar and insulin levels. “Glycation describes the loss of resilience in processing carbohydrates, reflected by fluctuating blood sugar levels and increasing insensitivity to insulin….It’s not only a major risk factor in obesity, diabetes, heart disease, but also in cancer, depression and mental decline.” Again, this is easily tested as fasting insulin.
Finally, he refers to oxidation. This is the ‘rusting’ process of the body, if you like. We produce free radicals from our body processes and in response to environmental, food, toiletry, medicines, radiation and other pollutants. Every free radical has the potential to cause damage somewhere in the body and is thought to be a major factor of the ageing process. For every free radical, you need to offset it with an antioxidant like A, C, E, zinc, selenium, CoQ10, lipoic acid etc from food or supplements. That’s why our 5-10 a day are so important. An oxidative stress analysis can be carried out, which uses aspirin as a challenge substance, to see what your oxidation rate and antioxidant level is like.
How to Test
Each of these processes can be tested using our usual postal lab testing service. The test required are:
Homocysteine –you can do this via a home finger prick test £75
Metabolic Syndrome Test, a blood test which measures blood fats inc different cholesterol fractions including VLDL, triglycerides etc plus fasting insulin and HbA1C. £70
Oxidative Stress Test, a first-morning urine test £65
You can have these done separately, or the total of all three are normally £205, but as a special offer, I will do them as a set for £180 during March and April. Give me a call or email to order if you think these would benefit you – I’d love them to be on the NHS and everyone over 40 has them for free – think how many people that could help, and how many billions off NHS costs!