Athletic Performance

Testosterone

What is it?

Testosterone is most often associated with sex drive and plays a vital role in sperm production. This hormone also helps to build muscle mass and bone density. Testosterone levels that are too high or too low can cause medical problems.

How does it affect me?

Low testosterone may make it difficult to build muscle mass. Testosterone can be improved by getting more sleep and by exercising regularly.

Cortisol

What is It?

Cortisol is a steroid hormone that your body naturally produce and release. Cortisol affects several aspects of your body and mainly helps regulate your body's response to stress. Cortisol has several important functions including helping the body regulate blood pressure and heart rate. Cortisol aids in the metabolism of glucose, suppresses the immune system, and influences memory formation. Cortisol also plays a role in how the body responds to inflammation.

How does it affect me?

Elevated cortisol may cause a wide array of health problems including mental health issues, infertility, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. With respect to athletic performance, cortisol causes muscle breakdown and may inhibit growth factors that help build muscle.

Vitamin D

What is it?

Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium, which is the primary component of bone. Vitamin D also regulates many other cellular functions in your body, including inflammation, antioxidants, and neuroprotection. Vitamin D supports immune health, muscle function, and brain cell activity.

How does it affect me?

Healthy Vitamin D levels are associated with improved endurance and muscle function. High levels of physical activity in atheletes may increase the body's demand for Vitamin D.

Vitamin B12

What is it?

Vitamin B12 is needed for the formation of red blood cells and DNA, and is also a key player in the function and development of brain and nerve cells. Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to fatigue, anemia, and neurological problems.

How does it affect me?

B12 is essential for red blood cell production. Low B12 may cause anemia and can cause fatigue in athletes.

Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)

What is it?

TSH is produced by the pituitary gland and regulates the production of thyroid hormone by the thyroid gland. TSH levels are affected by a number of factors, including stress, diet, and certain medications. High TSH levels may indicate an underactive thyroid gland, while low TSH levels may indicate an overactive thyroid gland.

How does it affect me?

High TSH levels may indicate an underactive thyroid, which can cause fatigue and dimish your ability to effectively excercise.

Cardiovascular

Total Cholesterol (CHOL)

What is it?

If you have too much cholesterol in your blood, it can combine with other substances in the blood to form plaque. Plaque sticks to the walls of your arteries. This buildup of plaque is known as atherosclerosis. It can lead to coronary artery disease, where your coronary arteries become narrow or even blocked.

How does it affect me?

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that's found in all the cells in your body. Your body needs some cholesterol to make hormones, vitamin D, and substances that help you digest foods. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs. Cholesterol is also found in foods from animal sources, such as egg yolks, meat, and cheese

High Density Lipoproteins (HDL)

What is it?

HDL stands for high-density lipoproteins. It is sometimes called the "good" cholesterol because it carries cholesterol from other parts of your body back to your liver. Your liver then removes the cholesterol from your body.

How does it affect me?

With HDL cholesterol, higher numbers are better, because a high HDL level can lower your risk for coronary artery disease and stroke. How high your HDL should be depends on your age and sex: 19 or younger = More than 45mg/dl, Men age 20 or older = More than 40mg/dl, Women age 20 or older = More than 50mg/dl

Low Density Lipoprotiens (LDL)

What is it?

LDL stands for low-density lipoproteins. It is sometimes called the "bad" cholesterol because a high LDL level leads to a buildup of cholesterol in your arteries.

How does it affect me?

If you have a high LDL level, this means that you have too much LDL cholesterol in your blood. This extra LDL, along with other substances, forms plaque. The plaque builds up in your arteries and puts you at risk of developing atherosclerosis.

Triglycerides (TRIG)

What is it?

Your body uses triglycerides for energy. If you eat more calories than you need, your body turns the extra calories into triglycerides and stores them in your fat cells to use later. When your body needs energy, your cells release triglycerides into your bloodstream to provide fuel for your muscles to work.

How does it affect me?

A high blood triglyceride level usually doesn't cause any symptoms, but over time, it may affect your arteries and increase your risk of heart disease. Extremely high levels of triglycerides also increase the risk of acute pancreatitis in adults and children.

Apolipoprotein A1 (APOA1)

What is it?

ApoA-I attaches to cell membranes and promotes the movement of cholesterol and phospholipids from inside the cell to the outer surface. Once outside the cell, these substances combine with apoA-I to form HDL. ApoA-I also triggers a reaction called cholesterol esterification that converts cholesterol to a form that can be fully integrated into HDL and transported through the bloodstream.

How does it affect me?

ApoA-1 promotes the formation of HDL (healthy cholesterol). Low ApoA-1 may cause low HDL and put you at risk of cardiovascular disease. Adapting healthy habits like sleeping, excercising, and eating healthy foods can improve ApoA-1 levels, but there may also be underlying gentic causes for low ApoA-1.

Apolipoprotein B (APOB)

What is it?

The APOB gene provides instructions for making two versions of the apolipoprotein B protein, a short version called apolipoprotein B-48 and a longer version known as apolipoprotein B-100. Both of these proteins are components of lipoproteins, which are particles that carry fats and fat-like substances (such as cholesterol) in the blood.

How does it affect me?

ApoB is a protein attached to bad cholesterol like LDL, VLDL, and IDL and allows these types of cholesterols into your cells. Elevated ApoB means you may be at risk of cardiovascular disease.

High Sensitivity C-Reactive Protein

What is it?

High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) is a marker of inflammation that predicts incident myocardial infarction, stroke, peripheral arterial disease, and sudden cardiac death among healthy individuals with no history of cardiovascular disease, and recurrent events and death in patients with acute or stable coronary syndromes.

How does it affect me?

Elevated CRP may be caused by injury, infection, or chronic disease and may increase your risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular disease.

Cortisol

What is it?

Cortisol is a hormone that affects almost every organ and tissue in your body. It helps your body: Respond to stress (cortisol is sometimes called the "stress hormone"), Reduce inflammation, Regulate blood sugar and metabolism (how your body uses food for energy), Control blood pressure

How does it affect me?

Elevated cortisol may contribute to array of health problems including mental health issues, infertility, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Comprehensive Health

Hemoglobin A1c

What is it?

Screening for hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) measures the amount of blood sugar (glucose) attached to hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the part of your red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body.

How does it affect me?

HbA1c is a biomarker that indicates your average blood sugar level over the past three months, which may be useful in identifying people suffering from diabetes or prediabetes. In people with known diabetes or prediabetes, HbA1c levels help indicate how well these conditions are being managed.

Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)

What is it?

TSH is produced by the pituitary gland and regulates the production of thyroid hormones by the thyroid gland. TSH levels are affected by a number of factors, including stress, diet, and certain medications. High TSH levels may indicate an underactive thyroid gland, while low TSH levels may indicate an overactive thyroid gland.

How does it affect me?

Elevated or supressed TSH may indicate hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

Creatinine

What is it?

Creatinine is a chemical compound left over from energy-producing processes in your muscles. Healthy kidneys filter creatinine out of the blood. Creatinine exits your body as a waste product in urine.

How does it affect me?

A creatinine test may be helpful in understanding how well your kidneys are functioning.

Total Cholesterol (CHOL)

What is it?

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that's found in all the cells in your body. Your body needs some cholesterol to make hormones, vitamin D, and substances that help you digest foods. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs. Cholesterol is also found in foods from animal sources, such as egg yolks, meat, and cheese

How does it affect me?

If you have too much cholesterol in your blood, it can combine with other substances in the blood to form plaque. Plaque sticks to the walls of your arteries, which can develop into atherosclerosis and lead to cardiovascular disease.

High Density Lipoproteins (HDL)

What is it?

HDL stands for high-density lipoproteins. It is sometimes called the "good" cholesterol because it carries cholesterol from other parts of your body back to your liver. Your liver then removes the cholesterol from your body.

How does it affect me?

HDL is a healthy type of cholesterol that helps clear unhealthy cholesterol, like LDL, out of your body. Understanding your HDL levels can help a care provider evaluate your cardiovascular health.

Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL)

What is it?

LDL stands for low-density lipoproteins. It is sometimes called the "bad" cholesterol because a high LDL level leads to a buildup of cholesterol in your arteries.

How does it affect me?

LDL is an unhealthy form of cholesterol that may increase your risk of developing atherosclerosis, the most common cause of cardiovascular disease. Understanding your LDL levels can help a care provider evaluate your cardiovascular health.

Billirubin

What is it?

Bilirubin is a byproduct of the normal breakdown of red blood cells. This byproduct is processed by the liver, where it becomes incorporated into bile and eventually excreted from your body.

How does it affect me?

The amount of bilirubin in your blood may be an indicator of your liver's ability to filter your blood. This can help a care provider evaluate your overall liver function.

Alanine Transaminase (ALT)

What is it?

ALT is an enzyme found mostly in liver cells, which allows the liver cells to produce cellular energy. When liver cells break down, ALT may be released into your blood stream.

How does it affect me?

Liver damage caused by infection, injury, alcohol consumption, certain medications, or liver disease can cause an elevated amount of ALT in the blood stream. Measuring ALT and AST may help a care provider evaluate your overall liver health.

Aspartate Transaminase (AST)

What is it?

AST is an enzyme found in the liver, heart, muscles, kidneys, brain, and red blood cells, which helps these tissues metabolize amino acids.

How does it affect me?

AST levels in blood are most commonly used to evaluate liver health, but may also indicate tissue damage in the heart, muscles, kidneys, brain, or red blood cells.

Cortisol

What is it?

Cortisol is a hormone that affects almost every organ and tissue in your body. It helps your body: Respond to stress (cortisol is sometimes called the "stress hormone"), Reduce inflammation, Regulate blood sugar and metabolism (how your body uses food for energy), Control blood pressure

How does it affect me?

Elevated cortisol may contribute to array of health problems including mental health issues, infertility, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Vitamin D (Vit D)

What is it?

Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium, which is the primary component of bone. Vitamin D also regulates many other cellular functions in your body, including inflammation, antioxidants, and neuroprotection. Vitamin D supports immune health, muscle function, and brain cell activity.

How does it affect me?

Healthy Vitamin D levels are associated with improved endurance and muscle function. High levels of physical activity in atheletes may increase the body's demand for Vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency may cause fatigue, muscle weakness, bone pain, or depression.

Micronutrient

Magnesium (Mg)

What is it?

Magnesium is an important mineral, playing a role in over 300 enzyme reactions in the human body. Its many functions include helping with muscle and nerve function, regulating blood pressure, and supporting the immune system.

How does it affect me?

Low magnesium may make you feel nauseated, and fatigued. Over time, magnesium deficiency may cause osteoporosis (weak bones), cause headaches, and may have a negative impact on cardiovascular health.

Calcium

What is it?

Calcium is a mineral most often associated with healthy bones and teeth, although it also plays an important role in blood clotting, helping muscles to contract, and regulating normal heart rhythms and nerve functions.

How does it affect me?

Low calcium may make you feel fatigued and may cause dizziness and brain fog. Over time, calcium deficiency can cause osteoporosis (weak bones), cataracts, and may put you at risk of developing tooth decay.

Elevated calcium may decrease bone strength, create kidney stones, cause high blood pressure, or slow your heart rate.

Vitamin D (Vit D)

What is it?

Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium, which is the primary component of bone. Vitamin D also regulates many other cellular functions in your body, including inflammation, antioxidants, and neuroprotection. Vitamin D supports immune health, muscle function, and brain cell activity.

How does it affect me?

Healthy Vitamin D levels are associated with improved endurance and muscle function. High levels of physical activity in atheletes may increase the body's demand for Vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency may cause fatigue, muscle weakness, bone pain, or depression.

Vitamin B12 (B12)

What is it?

Vitamin B12 is needed for the formation of red blood cells and DNA, and is also a key player in the function and development of brain and nerve cells. Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to fatigue, anemia, and neurological problems.

How does it affect me?

Low B12 may cause fatigue, headaches, depression, and can cause a specific type of anemia called "B12 anemia." Low B12 can also have neuological symptoms such as vision problems, memory loss, a tingling sensation, or a loss of coordination.

Ferritin

What is it?

Ferritin is a protein that stores iron. Red blood cells need iron to form normally and carry oxygen around your body. Other parts of your body, such as your liver, bone marrow, and muscles, also need iron.

How does it affect me?

Low Ferritin may indicate that you have low iron levels, or iron deficient-anemia.

Folate (B9)

What is it?

B9, or Folate, is a vitamin your body uses to make DNA, other genetic material, and red blood cells. Folate also plays an important role in the brain development of fetuses. The CDC recommends that reproductive aged women take Folate supplements to prevent birth defects.

How does it affect me?

Low Folate (B9) may cause fatigue, weakness, mouth sores, and neurological issues. It may also contribute to "B12 anemia." Low Folate in pregnant women may also contribute to the development of birth defects in fetuses.

Prediabetes

Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c)

Definition:

Screening for hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) measures the amount of blood sugar (glucose) attached to hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the part of your red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body.

How does this effect me?

Diabetes is a chronic disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high. Over time, diabetes can cause serious health problems, including heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.

HbA1c is a biomarker that indicates your average glucose level over the past three months. Elevated HbA1C may be an indicator pre-diabetes or diabetes.

Glucose

What is it?

Blood sugar, or glucose, is the main sugar found in your blood. It comes from the food you eat, and is your body's main source of energy. Your blood carries glucose to all of your body's cells to use for energy.

How does it affect me?

"Diabetes is a chronic disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high. Over time, diabetes can cause serious health problems, including heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.

A Glucose test indicates how much sugar is in your blood. Glucose levels may indicate either hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) or hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), and can help identify people suffering from diabetes."

Insulin

What is it?

Insulin is a hormone that helps move blood sugar, known as glucose, from your bloodstream into your cells. Glucose comes from the foods you eat and drink. It is your body's main source of energy. Insulin plays a key role in keeping glucose at the right levels. If glucose levels are too high or too low, it can cause serious health problems.

How does it affect me?

"Diabetes is a chronic disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high. Over time, diabetes can cause serious health problems, including heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.

Insulin helps regulate the amount of sugar in your blood.

If you have high blood sugar, elevated insulin may mean your body has developed a resistance to insulin. Insulin resistance makes it difficult for your body to properly regulate blood sugar and puts you at risk of developing Type II diabetes.

If you have high blood sugar and low insulin, then your body may not be able to produce enough insulin to properly regulate blood sugar and you may be at risk of having Type I diabetes.

If you have low blood sugar, elevated insulin may cause hypoglycemia. "

High-Sensitivity C-reactive Protein (hsCRP)

What is it?

High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) is a marker of inflammation that predicts incident myocardial infarction, stroke, peripheral arterial disease, and sudden cardiac death among healthy individuals with no history of cardiovascular disease, and recurrent events and death in patients with acute or stable coronary syndromes.

How does this affect me?

"Diabetes is a chronic disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high. Over time, diabetes can cause serious health problems, including heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.

Elevated CRP may be caused by injury, infection, or chronic disease such as diabetes and may increase your risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular disease. "

Creatinine

What is it?

Creatinine is a chemical compound left over from energy-producing processes in your muscles. Healthy kidneys filter creatinine out of the blood. Creatinine exits your body as a waste product in urine.

How does it affect me?

Creatinine is byproduct of normal muscle function that is cleared from your blood by your kidneys. A creatinine test may be helpful in understanding how diabetes may be affecting your kidney function.

Vitamin B-12 (Cobalamin)

What is it?

Vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) plays an essential role in red blood cell formation, cell metabolism, nerve function and the production of DNA, the molecules inside cells that carry genetic information.

How does it affect me?

Metformin is a common and effective treatment for diabetes and pre-diabetes, but may lower your B12 levels. Measuring B12 can help a care provider determine if metformin is an appropriate treatment option for you or if you could benefit from B12 supplements.