Before embarking on your FastDay journey, we’d suggest that you do a ‘health audit’ through a simple blood test. These can help identify a range of different health issues, from cholesterol build-ups to key vitamin deficiencies. They can also be used to monitor your progress through fasting – as you lose weight and become healthier, then the results should be visible through your blood tests results (this is of course what Michael Mosley did in The Fast Diet!). If you want to learn more about this area, read our article on monitoring progress.
These tests have never been simpler. You can either go to a testing clinic in person or just send off your sample in the post. Your blood sample then gets sent off to a lab, which report back in approximately a week with a detailed report. Below we’ve reviewed some of the best-known firms that run tests. Most of them run hundreds of different tests, so where possible we’ve focused on their ‘standard’ blood test – however, if you want to test anything specifically then it’s worth exploring the other options. While it isn’t necessary, it is something we would consider for your peace of mind! It also can act as a great motivational tool, to try and improve your results before your next test. Below we review some of the biggest companies doing blood tests in the UK and in the US.
Test: At home
Medicheck’s signature test is called the ‘Essential Blood Screen’, and reveals your blood glucose level, any mineral deficiencies, haematology profile, and cholesterol levels. They send you a ‘self-prick’ kit, for you to draw your own blood sample, which you then send off in the post to them. Results are normally available in email form 24 hours after they arrive at the lab. As part of the service after receiving your results you get a telephone consultation with a medical advisor to help you interpret them.
Medichecks website is easy to use, and they do a great job in explaining how their different tests work, and what you should expect from the results. This sample report clearly explains your results and highlights any issues. If you have any more questions, than the telephone consultation should help sort that out! Medichecks claims to be the UK’s leading provider of online blood tests, and it is easy to see why.
Test: In Spire Healthcare Hospitals (32 in the UK)
At Privatebloodtests, the standard test is called the ‘Comprehensive PLUS V Blood Test’, and checks your haematology profile, your cholesterol and blood glucose levels, and your kidney health. Medical professionals conduct all the tests, and if any of your results are abnormal then the report will come with a GP’s recommendation.
Privatebloodtests also carries out many other types of test, from fertility blood tests to tests for heavy metals, so if you need anything in particular its worth exploring their options. The only downside seems to be that you have to go their hospitals in person – they don’t offer a do-it-yourself version. Also, their website is slightly confusing, so probably best to do your research elsewhere!
Visit privatebloodtests.co.uk for more information
Annoyingly, homebloodtests.co.uk don’t appear to have a ‘standard’ blood test. However, unlike some of the other websites we’ve reviewed, they do offer various different home swab, home urine and home stool tests – so if you have something very particular you want to test they may be the option for you!
Test: In associated clinics (over 3000 nationwide)
Directlabs.com has a variety of different standard tests to fit your need. Their comprehensive wellness profile covers blood, cholesterol, glucose levels and mineral deficiencies, while their gender-specific tests can check for any infertility or hormonal problems.
The main drawback of directlabs.com is that they don’t offer the option of drawing samples at home. Furthermore, in a small handful of states due to regulations they aren’t allowed to operate – so you may find that the nearest clinic is some ways away!
Test: In clinics
Healthchecksusa have gender-specific standard wellness tests, which as well as testing your blood, glucose, cholesterol and mineral levels also check for any hormonal or infertility problems. Furthermore, they can also run urine analysis tests for more specific issues.
Whilst some of healthcheckusa’s tests do come with a 60 minute telephone consultation, their standard tests do not, so if you do have any questions you will need to go to your local doctor. Also, like directlabs.com, they don’t offer tests at home.