Pay more attention to your health this year! Here are 6 important screenings you can start on right now at home!
1. Cross-Legged Squat Test For Agility And Longevity
Start off with 10 points. Cross your legs, squat down and sit down on the floor; then get back up. If you don’t use hands, feet or wobble at all, you keep your 10 points. If any part of your body touches down, you lose a point. Aim to score an 8 or higher in this test of muscle strength, balance, flexibility and agility. The lower your number, the greater likelihood it is that you’re going to die in the next six years.
2. Bad Breath Test
Scrape the back of your tongue with a spoon, seal the spoon in a plastic bag and put it under a bright light for one minute. Then, smell it.
A healthy tongue coating should be clear, but if what you find on the spoon is thick, colored or has an unpleasant odor, it could be an early sign of problems with your respiratory system, liver, kidneys, hormones or gut. Most cases of bad breath will be related to gum disease or tonsils, but really ominous odors could be a sign of a larger health problem.
3. Clock Test For Dementia
Draw a clock on a piece of paper, add the numbers in the right order and make the hands point to 3:40. You get one point each for drawing a closed circle, properly placed numbers, getting all 12 numbers and properly placed hands. A score lower than four points could be a cause for concern.
The test assesses cognitive functions like memory, problem solving and executive functions like planning. It’s a good predictor of cognitive health.
4. Window Test For Eyes And Vision Loss
Look at a door frame or large window frame from across a room where you can see vertical and horizontal lines. Cover one eye and look at it for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side. You should be able to see the edges of the frame as vertical and horizontal parallel lines without any wavy or missing parts. If the door frame edges seem like they have kinks or are distorted, or bow in or out, this may indicate that you have macular degeneration, one of the most common causes of vision loss in people over 50.
5. Wobble Test For Faulty Thyroid
Stretch out your hand with your palm down, and place a piece of paper on top of it. Look for trembling or shaking of the paper, which could be a sign of hyperthyroidism. The condition, in which the thyroid is revved up and causes the body’s functions to go into hyperdrive, is more common in women, who are four times more likely than men to have it.
The movement could be too small to see on its own, but the paper accentuates any shaking. Keep in mind, though, that a slight tremble is common, and can be caused by caffeine, asthma medication, anxiety or low blood-sugar levels.
6. Cushion Test For Artery Problems
Lie on your back on a bed and elevate both legs to a 45-degree angle on cushions. Hold them there for one minute then quickly hang your legs down over the side of the bed at 90 degrees. If one or both of your feet or legs become very pale when elevated but take several minutes to return to their regular color, it could be a sign of peripheral arterial disease.