Men’s Health Month: Health Tests Every Man Should Get

Men's Health Month: Next Health highlights essential health tests every man should consider. Prioritize your well-being with proactive healthcare measures.

Men’s Health Month: Health Tests Every Man Should Get
Next Health Staff
|
December 6, 2023

June is Men’s Health Month, which makes it the perfect time to talk about the importance of regular health check-ups for men. One of the best ways to stay on top of your health is by getting the right health tests done.

Here are some essential health tests every man should get:

Hormone Levels

Maintaining optimal hormone levels is crucial for men's health, and testosterone is one of the most important hormones for men. Testosterone is a hormone that is primarily produced in the testicles and is responsible for regulating several functions in the male body, including muscle mass, bone density, and sex drive.

According to recent studies, the average 22-year-old today has the same testosterone levels as a 67-year-old had in 2000, and testosterone levels have fallen over 50% in the last two decades. This decline in testosterone levels is a growing concern among healthcare professionals, as it can lead to several health issues such as low energy, decreased muscle mass, and decreased bone density.

Low testosterone levels in men can lead to health issues, including decreased sex drive, reduced muscle mass, and weakened bones. It can also lead to increased body fat, decreased energy levels, erectile dysfunction, and decreased overall mental health.

Given the importance of testosterone for maintaining muscle mass, bone density, and sex drive, it is essential to get your testosterone levels regularly checked. Hormone levels play a crucial role in men’s wellness, and it is important to get your hormone levels tested regularly to ensure that they are within the normal range. Hormones such as testosterone, cortisol, and thyroid hormones are especially important.

Proactively managing your hormone levels through hormone optimization can help prevent long-term health issues associated with low testosterone levels.

The Next Health Baseline Test not only measures critical hormone levels, but also gives you a better idea of your overall health by analyzing levels of metabolic markers, vitamin levels, lipid levels, inflammation markers, and more.

From there, you can decide if Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy is right for you. Hormone Optimization at Next Health uses natural hormones that are made from plant materials (yams). These hormones are exactly the same as the ones your body makes, so your body can easily utilize them like your own.

This helps get your hormone levels back to normal in a gentle, natural way. You’ll start to notice all kinds of positive changes in how you look and feel:

  • Improve metabolic function
  • Decrease visceral fat
  • Enhance cognitive function
  • Improve overall energy
  • Promote healthy aging

Learn more about how to boost testosterone naturally here

Thyroid Levels

The thyroid is a small gland located in the neck that impacts nearly every bodily system and function. This is because the thyroid produces hormones that, in short, affect how your cells utilize energy and the speed at which processes are carried out. As a result, the thyroid is often compared to the “gas pedal” of the body that dictates how fast or slow systems function. Some aspects of health most influenced by the thyroid are metabolism, mood, and weight. However, systems such as the heart, brain, gut, and beyond are also affected by thyroid function.

Hypothyroidism in Men

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormones. This condition can affect both men and women, but it is more prevalent in women.

However, a study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that the prevalence of hypothyroidism is higher in men than previously thought, and it increases with age. This may be due to exposure to environmental toxins, such as pesticides and heavy metals, which are more prevalent in today's society. Another study published in the same journal found a link between hypothyroidism and exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), chemicals that were commonly used in electrical equipment and other industrial applications until they were banned in the 1970s.

Signs of Hypothyroidism in Men:

  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Weight gain
  • Cold intolerance
  • Dry skin
  • Constipation
  • Hair loss
  • Decreased sexual health
  • Muscle weakness

Consider the Next Health Thyroid Lab Test. This test measures all thyroid-related biomarkers to diagnose Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, hypothyroidism (underactive), hyperthyroidism (overactive), iodine deficiency, and other signs of thyroid dysfunction.

It is estimated that approximately 750 million people globally suffer from thyroid dysfunction, with up to 60% being undiagnosed.

Proactively check the status of your thyroid with the comprehensive Thyroid Lab Test.

Inflammation Levels

hs-CRP is a blood test that measures the level of C-reactive protein, a protein produced by the liver in response to inflammation. This test can help identify chronic inflammation, which is linked to various health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

hs-CRP levels below 1 mg/L are considered low risk, 1-3 mg/L are considered average risk, and above 3 mg/L are considered high risk for heart disease. (Reminder that inflammation markers are included in the Next Health Baseline Test)

It is important to monitor inflammation levels using this test to identify any underlying health problems and take appropriate action. Regular check-ups and lifestyle changes such as nutrition and diet as well as fitness and exercise can help manage inflammation and reduce the risk of chronic disease.

Chronic inflammation has been linked to the development of various chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. According to a study published in The Lancet, chronic inflammation can cause damage to the body's tissues and cells, leading to the development of chronic diseases. The study also emphasized the importance of monitoring inflammation levels and taking steps to reduce chronic inflammation to prevent the development of chronic diseases.

Another study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that elevated levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, were associated with an increased risk of heart disease.

The study concluded that monitoring inflammation levels, along with other traditional risk factors, can help identify individuals at high risk for heart disease and guide appropriate interventions.

Learn more about how to reduce inflammation levels here

Food Sensitivities

Food sensitivities are different from allergies in that they can be more subtle and take longer to manifest. For example, a food sensitivity might cause bloating or gastrointestinal discomfort several hours after consuming the food, whereas an allergic reaction would present more immediately and with more severe symptoms.

Food sensitivities can be difficult to identify without testing, as symptoms can be vague and varied. However, identifying and addressing food sensitivities is important, as they can contribute to chronic inflammation and increase the risk of developing chronic health conditions.

Food sensitivities can have long-term consequences if left unaddressed. According to a study published in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, individuals with food sensitivities are at increased risk for developing chronic conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, and autoimmune disorders.

The study also found that addressing food sensitivities through dietary changes can improve symptoms and prevent the development of chronic conditions. Another study published in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology found that food sensitivities can contribute to chronic inflammation, which we’ve discussed is essentially, “the root of all disease.”

Next Health’s cutting-edge Food Sensitivity Test empowers you to take the guesswork out of your diet. A simple at-home finger-prick test or a blood draw at one of our locations will help our medical experts determine what foods you may be sensitive to. This test is incredibly thorough as it measures your immune response to over 96 different foods.

Heart Health

A cardiac panel is a blood test that measures various markers of heart health, including cholesterol, LDL and HDL, and triglycerides. Maintaining healthy levels of these markers is crucial for longevity and reducing the risk of heart disease.

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that is produced in the liver and is essential for the production of hormones and cell membranes. However, high cholesterol levels can contribute to the formation of plaque in the arteries, which can increase the risk of heart disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death for men in the United States, and high cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease.

LDL (low-density lipoprotein) is often referred to as "bad" cholesterol because it contributes to the formation of plaque in the arteries. HDL (high-density lipoprotein), on the other hand, is often referred to as "good" cholesterol because it helps to remove excess cholesterol from the bloodstream and transport it back to the liver for processing. According to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, low levels of HDL cholesterol are associated with an increased risk of heart disease in men.

Triglycerides are a type of fat that is found in the bloodstream and can also contribute to the formation of plaque in the arteries when levels are too high. According to the American Heart Association, high levels of triglycerides are associated with an increased risk of heart disease.

A cardiac panel can help identify any imbalances in these markers and guide appropriate interventions to reduce the risk of heart disease. Proactively managing these markers through lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise or medication can help reduce the risk of heart disease and promote longevity.

Interested in taking an even more proactive approach to heart health? Consider a chest CT.

While a chest CT can be used to detect certain heart conditions such as coronary artery disease, it is not typically used as a proactive approach to heart health. A chest CT is a type of imaging test that uses X-rays to create detailed images of the chest, including the heart, lungs, and blood vessels. A chest CT can also diagnose common causes of high blood pressure, another known contributor to heart disease.

Learn more ways to support your heart health here

Epigenetic Age

Epigenetics is the study of changes in gene expression that are not caused by changes in the DNA sequence itself. These changes can be influenced by various factors, including environmental influences and lifestyle choices.

The TruAge Epigenetic Test is a non-invasive test that measures epigenetic age, which is a measure of biological age based on changes in gene expression. Unlike chronological age, which is simply the number of years a person has been alive, epigenetic age takes into account the cumulative impact of lifestyle factors on gene expression.

The TruAge Epigenetic Test can provide valuable insights into a person's overall health and well-being. By measuring epigenetic age, the test can help identify areas where lifestyle changes may be needed to improve health outcomes. For example, if a person's epigenetic age is significantly higher than their chronological age, it may indicate that they are at increased risk for age-related diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Regular testing with the TruAge Epigenetic Test can also help track the effectiveness of lifestyle changes and interventions. For example, if a person makes changes to their diet and exercise habits, they can use the test to track changes in their epigenetic age over time. This can provide valuable motivation and feedback to help maintain healthy habits and prevent chronic disease.

Next-Level Testing: The Executive Physical

The Executive Physical is the ultimate proactive approach to health, offering a comprehensive evaluation of your current health status, as well as an in-depth look at your future health risks. The program is designed to help busy executives and professionals take control of their health by providing them with the tools and resources they need to stay healthy and productive.

The Next Health Executive Physical includes a thorough medical evaluation, including a physical exam, laboratory testing, and imaging scans. The program also includes a consultation with a medical professional who will review your results and work with you to develop a personalized health plan that suits your needs and lifestyle:

  • Head-To-Toe Body Imaging: Full-Body MRI, Chest CT, CT Calcium Score, InBody Body Composition Scan, and complete medical and physical exam
  • Full Bloodwork Panel and Genetic Analysis: Panel of over 500 biomarkers, epigenetic age analysis, genetic blueprint analysis, and a cancer screening (scan of over 50 types of cancer)
  • Personalized Functional Medicine Wellness Plan: A top Next Health medical provider will curate a personalized wellness plan for you optimize your health in the short and long term.

When you join the Executive Physical program, you can also choose to target specific health concerns with proactive testing such as a prostate check or a sleep study if you are suffering from sleep apnea.

The future of medicine is here and you can utilize all it has to offer to live healthier, more vibrant, and longer.

Learn more about the Executive Physical

Have questions? Request a complimentary consult

Call or text us at: (310) 295-2075

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