Know your anatomy! Ask your doctor questions about the status of all your organs. Is your heart enlarged? If so, why? Chronic high blood pressure can lead to enlargement of the heart, which can lead to arrhythmias such as Atrial Fibrillation. People with enlarged structurally damaged hearts may need aspirin, and people with atrial fibrillation often need to be on blood thinners (anticoagulation). A simple physical exam, EKG, and chest xray should suffice to assess heart size.

What about kidneys? Ask your doctor the status of your kidneys! Routine blood tests (complete or basic metabolic panel) reveals “Creatinine” which is a clumsy but useful assessment of kidney function. If your kidneys aren’t filtering well, then you need to avoid certain medications such as NSAIDS (motrin, ibuprofen, naprosyn, etc). If your kidney leaks protein (can be determined by a simple urinalysis), then you need to be tested for elevated cholesterol, elevated inflammation, and for high blood pressure. If your kidneys leak protein, then you need to be on an ACEI (ACE inhibitor, or angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor), which protects the kidneys and improves blood flow at the microscopic level.

If you are diabetic, overweight, an alcoholic, or if you have hepatitis C or B, know the status of your liver! Comprehensive Metabolic Panel is a simple blood test that assesses your liver function. In addition to detoxifying material that you’ve eaten, the liver also detoxifies medicine, supplements, drugs, and synthesizes clotting proteins and structural proteins very important for the body. A simple albumin level and a PT/INR (prothrombin time) can assess your liver’s capacity to synthesize essential proteins. Contact us for a straightforward liver detox program!

If you have asthma or COPD or emphysema, and require the use of inhalers daily or frequently, then you may have significant structurallung disease, putting you at risk for pneumonia and heart problems. Know the status of your lungs! A routine chest xray after a physical exam should reveal this information.

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