So I posted about this before but we had to have our blood drawn for work and get our lab results if we want to be on the PPO at work (not the high deductible health plan) and have part of the costs paid by our employer.
My blood work came back okay, despite the fact that I hadn't technically been fasting that day (I'd eaten a granola bar at about 5:10 a.m. before I ran out of habit, then had my blood drawn just after 9). But there were a few items listed among my blood test results that were not great.
First, my BP was "elevated.". About 123/84, so not bad, but my doctor said it should be under 120 and under 80. But just yesterday at the dentist's office, it was 123/77, so marginally better. Still a bit higher than it should be.
Second, my cholesterol was "borderline.". It was 204, and the doctor said it should be under 200.
Third, my iron was totally out of whack. Not unusual for a vegetarian woman who exercises a lot, right? Well, it would not be unusual for a vegetarian woman who exercises a lot to have low iron, but mine was high. Wtf? I would say generally I'm a pretty healthy eater too. (As an aside, my doctor sent me a letter telling me to stop taking all iron supplements immediately -- which makes NO sense since I'm not taking iron supplements and I never have, so for now I just cut out my multi-vitamin per the doc, and will get the iron retested in a few months.)
Fourth, least alarming, were my many allergies. They tested for a lot of things (it was an elective test I chose at no cost!). The good range for a reaction to an allergen is 0 to 0.05. I ended up with lots of things in the .1 to 1.0 range. But for some things like cats and dogs, I was over 4.0! But most shocking I thought was Kentucky Bluegrass, and my number for that was over 65.0! Yikes! Guess I should find out where that is and never ever ever go there.
Anyway, back to the things I can control at least somewhat like BP, cholesterol and iron.
Coincidentally, this month's issue of Vegetarian Times had an article about how to lower cholesterol naturally. Well, less article, more Q&A. Someone who is a vegan asked about lowering cholesterol. Some of the suggestions were to eat more beans, oatmeal, okra, barley, and soy (and nuts, but given the allergies, that would kill me) and less olive oil (actually less of all oils).
So my big plan, put into effect last night after yoga, is to make my dinner salad after yoga with my usual mix of veggies (usually spinach or mixed greens and red onion, then sometimes some avocado and/or artichokes and/or olives or whatever else we have around), topped with only red or white wine vinegar and pepper. I'm also going to try to add beans to the salad a couple nights per week.
Guess we will know next year when it gets checked again if this helps. Or maybe if I get my iron retested in a few months, they can check cholesterol too.