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Do you know your numbers?

health metrics Aug 28, 2018
 

Welcome to Foolish Insights. We are the Foolish Couple, Andrew and Minna, nutrition coaches and success mentors. We created FoCo Academy to guide and mentor people to achieve true health and healthy relationships through nutrition, exercise, mindset and lifestyle changes.

Today I want to talk about Metrics.

As a nutrition Coach, or any type of coach, one of the first things that we learned is to keep track of our metrics. And I am astonished by how many people don’t keep track of their metrics.

What do I mean by metrics?

Health-wise, that would mean anything relating to your health that you can measure. Most of you probably see you doctor once every year for a checkup. During the checkup, your doctor will usually go through basic questions, measure your weight, take your blood pressure and listen to your heart and your lungs and perhaps request a blood checkup for your vitals. Your weight, blood pressure, and your blood-work are all considered your metrics!

There are some metrics that you can keep track yourself regularly. You can track your metrics on a daily, weekly and monthly schedule to gauge how your health is. And taking metrics regularly is important for your health because it gives you the first signs of problems. But, somehow, most of you won’t spend the few minutes each day to track your metrics.

You will all wait for that once a year exam with your family doctor so that someone else can track the metrics for you. But many things can happen during that year and without tracking your numbers regularly, you may not be able to detect your problems early enough.

If you are generally healthy, I applaud you, you must be doing something right. But for most of you, I would say probably 90% of you probably have some underlying problem that you didn’t know about till you get your blood work and test results.

Some of the common problems that many adults have are

  • Weight issues - you may be either overweight or underweight
  • Your blood pressure is too high or too low
  • You have a high resting heart rate
  • You are lacking nutrients and minerals
  • You have high levels of heavy metals
  • You have high levels of bad cholesterol LDL and Low levels of Good Cholesterol HDL
  • Your fasting blood glucose is high
  • Your A1C number is high

 

The last two are very important to keep track of because if your fasting blood glucose is between 100 to 126, and your A1C is between 5.7 and 6.4, that means you are pre-diabetic!

1 in 3 people in the US are pre-diabetic. That means if you have three people in your family, one of you is most likely pre-diabetic, you got two friends, one out you is pre-diabetic.

The scary thing is 90% of the people that are pre-diabetic don’t know they are and that’s dangerous because it can lead to Diabetes type 2 which can cause all sorts of problems in the future!

I have many clients, friends and family that want to be healthier and perhaps lose a few pounds, but when I ask about their metrics, they look at me funny. That is just crazy to me.

How are you going to know if you are getting healthier if you do not have any baseline numbers to compare to? If you don’t have a bank account, how do you know how much money you have?

 

If you are overweight, how heavy are you?

If you have high blood pressure, how high is it?

If you are prediabetic, what is your fasting blood glucose?

 

If you are getting these metrics only once a year or even once every three months, there is no way of knowing if what you are doing is making you better or worse.

If you know that you are overweight, buy a high quality scale that not only measures your weight, but your water content, body fat percentage and your lean muscle percentage. This is important too because when you lose weight, what you really want to lose is body fat and not lean muscle.

If you know you have high blood pressure, get a blood pressure monitor and check in the morning and in the evening. It may even help if you check your blood pressure before and after you exercise or if you eat a big meal, just to see what the impact that type of exercise or diet has on your blood pressure. And there are some cool ones out there that syncs to your phone and logs the metrics for you.

 

If you are pre-diabetic, and you cut sweets and carbohydrates only during a week or two before your checkup. You are only fooling yourself. And you are gambling with your health. For something like blood glucose that is primarily impacted by your diet, it is a good idea to check your numbers before you eat, and 30 minutes after you eat so that you can tell what kind of foods will spike your blood glucose levels.

How about exercise? How much exercise are you doing? How many steps do you take a day?

How many calories do you burn during your exercise and what is your heart rate during those exercises? Is your heart rate in your fat burning zone?

Then how do you keep track of all these numbers? Well, this used to be tedious, but not anymore. Your smart watch, which I’m sure many of you have, is not just a fashion accessory. I know it has cool screensavers and cute little watch bands, but your watch is so much smarter than that!

Use your watch to track your resting heart rate, the number of steps you take, the calories burned during exercise, and your heart rate while you do the exercises. These are all vital to your health!

Some of you may have heard that I had a horrific car accident in my teens that caused me to have degenerative arthritis in my 30’s. I also have mild Asthma all my life.

My mom has high blood pressure and is pre-diabetic, my brother has high blood pressure, is overweight and diabetic, my dad had Parkinson’s and both my grandfathers died from heart attacks.

My family history puts me at a greater risks of having any of these degenerative diseases. So I have been learning and practicing ways that I can stay healthy and teach other people to be healthy as well. That is why I became a nutrition coach.

My body likes to burn glucose or carbohydrates. My fasting blood glucose number is usually in the pre-diabetic range between 106-114. I also noticed that I tend to put on weight quickly when my blood glucose stays in that range.

So I know my body is slightly insulin resistant. And I have to be very careful choosing where I go out to eat and what I eat.

I truly believe that food can be medicine, or food can be poison for our bodies. Choosing the right foods can heal us, and eating the wrong foods can hurt our bodies tremendously. [Tweet this]

I also do a water fast about once a month to train my body to burn fat for energy rather than glucose.

Right now, I am also doing a 28 day cold water experiment to see If I can convert my white fat into brown fat. White fat stores energy and brown fat consumes energy by generating heat. If you want to know how this experiment is coming along, follow me on facebook to check out my results.

On a daily basis. I keep track of my weight, my body fat percentage, my lean muscle mass, how many steps I take , how many calories I burn daily, how many hours of sleep I get, how much exercise I do and how high my heart rate is during those exercises, how often I stand up and what my fasting glucose is every morning. Every week I check my blood pressure and my waist circumference. Your waste circumference should be less then 40 inches if you are a man and less then 35 inches if you are a woman.

These are the tools I chose to measure my Metrics. An iron scale for the weight and body and muscle percentages, this fancy Qardio Blood pressure monitor that syncs with my iPhone and my apple watch which I use to track all my exercises, heart rate and how much I move. I also use my apple watch to compete with friends and clients on how much exercise and calories we burn to not only get healthier but also accountable. If you want to add me to your apple watch, let me know, I love to have someone else to compete with and keep accountable!

I hope everyone is now more aware of how important your metrics are and will start tracking them for better health.

Till Next Time Love what you live and live what you love. 

PS: We have a brand new ebook out called ‘Gut Matters’ that goes deeper into the issue of our gut and the action steps that we can take to repair our gut and bring our bodies back to an optimal, healthy state.

This ebook is free for you to download and all you have to do is follow the link below and we will send you a copy.

Download the ebook now

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We are not medical doctors. This blog is not intended to diagnose medical condition, or replace your health care provider. The contents of this blog are for informational purposes only. Statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Always consult your personal physician before starting any fitness or exercise program or changing dietary habits. The content of this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It is not a substitute for a medical exam, nor does it replace the need for services or counsel provided by medical professionals. However, we do hope to inspire you to become healthier, more self sufficient, and more aware of options.

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