Testing, Testing

Wow what a week this has been. You will never guess what I did, go ahead try. Nope not that, it was even more fun. Okay, okay you give, right?  It was another blood test. Ugh! There is little I like less than fasting and this one involved fasting salt for 24 hours, getting up at a certain time and having the test within two hours of arising and sitting upright for the two hours plus making sure you are upright for the test (not that you would even be tempted to lie down). Can you guess what test it was? I have blogged about this test before (*Alto*sterone). Okay that was a give away, it was aldosterone and renin plus electrolytes.

I finally decided to do the test because there are some lingering thyroid issues that not only shouldn’t be lingering they should be gone, make that GONE. I cannot seem to take more than 75 mcg of Cynomel (T3) without experiencing hyperthyroid symptoms and this simply is not normal especially as I have a FT3 of 6 these days. Not that I have ever been normal but in this case I guess it really is unacceptable to not be. I always feel “normal” is hard to define but when you are still experiencing heart palpitations it becomes unacceptable.

Last Tuesday I started the 24 hours of salt fasting which seems easy enough but my life without salt is less than perfect and the diet is just plain bland. Breakfast was unsalted, cooked quinoa with some dried fruit which wasn’t bad. Lunch was bland and consisted of unsalted nuts. I managed to resist any homemade goodies that would contain the forbidden crystals of sodium, magnesium, and other trace minerals otherwise known as unrefined, unprocessed grey sea salt.

Supper, hmm, supper was a challenge as I spent the day considering what wouldn’t taste too bad without my precious Celtic sea salt. I came up with a brilliant idea, or so I thought. Fish pie. I thawed some mahi-mahi, boiled some plain, cut up potatoes, thawed some spinach and chopped up onion. As I assembled the pie I added some fresh basil and freshly ground pepper. I had visions of a Jamie Oliver Fantastic Fish Pie but instead without that sheen of fabulous salt and tasty butter it tasted a bit like overcooked frozen fish with soggy potatoes on top. We ate it but neither of us swooned or asked for more.

For my bedtime snack I added filtered water to chia seed and let it sit for an hour. This concoction actually makes a jelly of sorts and has become a favorite of mine because chia, according to Dr. Oz, is full of tryptophan and will help you sleep. At this point chia seed jelly or not, sleep is what I did and I slept well.

On Wednesday I even slept in a bit getting up around 6 in the morning. I needed to be up two hours for my test, so this was perfect. I left home right at the peak of rush hour in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul and proceeded to drive through both cities to the Edina LabCorp. Let me just say that I have a lot of admiration for the folks who do this every working day of their lives. It would literally drive me to distraction.

I arrived at the Edina Labcorp site 15 minutes before 8 took the elevator to the 6th floor and anxiously waited outside the office door staring at a sign that said “Do not stand in hallway. Either enter the office or return to the lobby” I could feel the security cameras on my back and nervously waited for the voice to come out of nowhere telling me to “move on, clear the hallway” but thankfully it never came.

At 8 o’clock sharp a friendly face appeared in the until now dark waiting room and I heard the magic clink of an unlocking deadbolt. I was the only person waiting and thus the first person through the door and in to the operatory of a very personable phlebotomist named Debbie who as it turns out drives across the Twin Cities 5 days a week and hates it. I was in that room by 2 minutes after 8, perfect timing for my aldosterone and renin to correlate at 120 minutes after arising. Debbie drew two tubes of blood rather painlessly, bandaged my slight needle prick and sent me on my way. Before I knew it I was back in rush hour traffic but going east instead of west this time.

My results are back already (I highly recommend Econolabs), heck my electrolytes  were back on Thursday before noon 24 hours later. My aldosterone/renin magically appeared on Saturday and all is well, darn it. It was a good thing to eliminate from the pile of culprits that can keep your T3 receptors from making the most of your T3 but there aren’t too many factors left to consider and I still have the unexplained heart palpitations. Now I get to do an iron panel and a T4. Let me tell you how excited I am about doing further blood tests but at least I won’t have to drive across town in the crazy rush hour that some call driving to work and best of all there will be no fasting.

To your good health,



2 responses to this post.

  1. I noticed that you mentioned recommending EconoLabs- I would respectfully ask you check out http://www.LowestPriceLabs.com. Some of the prices seem to be cheaper/some not however you can print your Requisition immediately at the time of check-out (not up to 2 hours later through email), and they use the same Lab- LabCorp (and more labs because they offer at home lab test kits too from different specialty lab companies)


    • I shall check out Lowest Price Labs but I will say that Econolabs sent my requisition form immediately and their service was very efficient. I have friends who have waited weeks and months to get their results back, mine were there within 24 hours for simple testing and within three days for more complicated testing.


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