"Discover if your body is resistant to insulin"
This test which is performed on a blood sample shows you whether you are insulin resistance. If you have fat around the middle of your body or high and lows of blood sugar during the day then it is likely that you are. It is important to know for sure because if the problem is caught early enough then it is reversible. Unfortunately, it can progress to Type 2 diabetes (late onset diabetes) if left unchecked so it is much better to prevent a problem like this than to wait and then deal with it once it has occurred.
To measure insulin resistance, a simple glucose test is not enough. We really need to test insulin levels too as with insulin resistance both glucose and insulin levels will be high.
This is a fasting blood test, which means that you have the blood taken first thing in the morning without eating or drink and a kit can be sent to you which you can then take to your local practice nurse or doctor so they can take a small quantity of blood. This is sent to the laboratory and the results are forwarded onto you with a report.
This blood test also measures cholesterol, HDL ('good') cholesterol, LDL ('bad') cholesterol, triglycerides and VDL (very low density lipoproteins) because these can be outside of the normal ranges with insulin resistance and it is important to know so that steps can be taken to rectify the problem. High levels of LDL and VDL can increase the risk of atherosclerosis - build up of plaque on the artery walls - and an analysis of the results of a huge study across 52 countries in 2004 showed that 45% of heart attacks are caused by having abnormal cholesterol and lipid (fat) levels.
Samples should be returned to the laboratory by Next Day Delivery, Monday-Thursday only. Samples received outside of the suggested postage dates may be discarded and the patient asked to repeat the test.