What is a Comprehensive Metabolic Panel and Why is It Important?
Next Health Staff | | 0 comments
The path to long-term wellness is about more than just eating healthily or following basic guidelines. It’s also about understanding your body’s unique chemistry and physiological needs. The best way to know how your body is functioning and how you can make improvements is to take targeted tests that measure biomarkers.
One of the most effective biomarker tests is the comprehensive metabolic panel. A comprehensive metabolic panel is important since it measures your blood for a variety of key minerals and their biomarkers, such as potassium, glucose, and total protein levels. In doing so, a comprehensive metabolic panel will provide a wealth of information you can then use when choosing foods, taking supplements, and more.
It’s no stretch to say that a comprehensive metabolic panel can significantly improve your wellness efforts by providing important information for future decisions. Let’s take a closer look at what a comprehensive metabolic panel is and why it’s important for anyone interested in maximizing their future wellness.
Comprehensive Metabolic Panel Explained
A comprehensive metabolic panel or CMP is best understood as an in-depth test that measures 14 different substances in total by analyzing a blood sample. People get CMPs so they can learn more about their bodies' metabolism and chemical balance.
Metabolism, and a nutshell, describes how efficiently your body uses food and energy. By learning more about your body’s metabolism, you’ll learn more about how to eat healthily, how your body processes certain types of food, and how to better become fit if you’re working out regularly.
Furthermore, CMPs can check for metabolic abnormalities and give you a warning if there’s a brewing condition to address.
What Does a CMP Measure?
CMPs measure 14 distinct blood markers or compounds, each of which is affected by or plays a major role in metabolism.
The 14 different blood markers are:
- Glucose levels. Glucose is one of your body’s primary energy sources and you need a steady level of glucose in your blood for overall health and steady activity
- Calcium levels. Calcium is also important as it is a necessary mineral for muscle and nerve function, as well as the formation and maintenance of bones
- Albumin levels. Albumin is a protein made by your liver and comprises around 60% of your blood’s total protein content
- Total protein levels. A CMP also measures the overall protein content in your blood, which is an important marker for overall health and muscle activity
- Electrolyte levels. Electrolytes are vital minerals that are required to move nutrients throughout your body’s cells and remove waste. They also help to ensure a healthy water balance in the blood and stabilize your body’s pH level. A CMP will check for four electrolytes in total: sodium, potassium, chloride, and bicarbonate
- Blood urea nitrogen, or BUN levels. A CMP will check for this waste product, which is normally filtered by your kidneys
- Creatinine levels. Creatinine is another waste product produced by your muscles and filtered by the kidneys. Checking for both BUN and creatinine levels gives a good indication of how well your body's kidneys are working
- Bilirubin levels. Bilirubin is a waste product produced by breaking down a component of hemoglobin
- Alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase, and aspartate aminotransferase levels. Each of these are enzymes found in your bones, heart, liver, kidneys, and other organs. Measuring these levels helps the CMP determine if you have a disorder
All in all, the comprehensive data collected by measuring the levels of 14 distinct markers will result in a wealth of health information you can then use for further treatments or lifestyle development.
What is a CMP Used For?
As indicated by the measurable blood markers above, a CMP will often be used to check for the overall functionality and efficiency of your metabolism. But it can also be used to check for healthy body functions and processes, such as your blood sugar levels, acid-base balance, electronic balance, and even liver and kidney health.
Many people order CMPs if they want to check in on their body’s general health and wellness, even if they don’t suspect something is particularly wrong. It’s a good idea to keep tabs on your body’s general health, especially as you get older.
At other times, CMPs might be ordered with a routine health exam, particularly if you are ill or in the hospital, or if you are undergoing regular treatments for some condition.
What Do “CMP Results” Mean?
CMP test results can mean many things depending on the levels of certain biomarkers or minerals in your blood.
For instance, one abnormal test result could mean something totally different compared to a test result that shows multiple abnormal marker levels.
Even the most detailed CMP can only be used as a guideline for future treatments, lifestyle decisions, or supplement choices. It’s important to discuss any CMP results with a qualified medical practitioner.
Should you decide to go with a CMP from Next|Health, one of our wellness specialists will be happy to discuss your test’s potential results or implications.
What Does it Mean if One of Your Results is Out of Range?
Occasionally, individuals will take a CMP and find one of their biomarkers is “out of range”. This means it is slightly higher or lower than would be expected for an individual of their sex and age.
However, an out of range biomarker alone is not indicative of any greater health problem. There is a great deal of biological variability to consider when taking these tests. Averages cannot fully be relied upon to tell you what your marker levels should be for something like sodium or potassium.
Individuals’ bodily chemistry can vary heavily. Therefore, it’s important to discuss any CMP results with a doctor or wellness specialist before undertaking any big lifestyle changes or worrying about a potential condition.
How Do You Get a CMP?
You can get a CMP from your regular healthcare practitioner or from a hospital if they order it as a necessary step in the treatment of some condition.
Alternatively, you can get ahead of the curve and order a CMP from a wellness clinic like Next|Health. While we offer several advanced lab tests to scan for a variety of conditions, mineral levels, and even what kinds of foods you may have a mild allergic response to, we also offer an in-depth CMP.
Our CMP can provide critical information about the state of your metabolism, including how your liver and kidneys are functioning. Our CMP is part of our Total Baseline test, which is essential if you want to begin a thorough wellness journey.
Included with our CMP are 50 biomarker measurements that can be used to measure your overall health status. We measure for immunity, hormones, inflation, and much more. Then you can discuss your results with our clinic professionals and look into further treatments, such as IV shots or drips or supplements.
Are There Risks to CMPs?
Not at all. A CMP procedure simply involves taking a small blood sample via needle extraction. Therefore, you might feel slight pain or bruising at the point where the needle was inserted. But like any blood draw, symptoms go away really quickly. You do not need to provide as much blood as you would with a regular blood donation. So you will not likely need to increase your blood sugar shortly after the test is administered.
However, note that you may need to fast (avoid eating or drinking) for between 10 and 12 hours before the test depending on your physiological makeup and the recommendation of your clinic specialist. Contact us today to learn what may be required for your CMP test should you decide to take one.
Where to Get a CMP
Luckily, you can receive a CMP at any licensed Next|Health clinic. We have three primary clinic locations in Los Angeles, New York City, in Century City, each of which can offer our total baseline test and the CMP that comes with the package.
Furthermore, each of our clinics offers additional wellness services and packages. You can sign up for a baseline test and a CMP by appointment. If you’re interested, contact us soon as slots typically fill up quite quickly.
All in all, a comprehensive metabolic panel is just one way to analyze your body’s unique chemistry and biomarkers to learn more about your wellness journey. There are no perfect CMP results for everyone. Instead, it’s best to think of a CMP as a learning experience you can use to improve the effects of your future workouts, dieting plans, and supplement choices.
Interested in getting a CMP soon? Contact us today and we’ll look into appointment dates and times that are most convenient for your busy schedule!