No one likes going to the doctor. Co-pays, hidden feeds, and inflated pricing (combined with a dislike of being poked and prodded by a cold-handed stranger) make that unwillingness to schedule a doctor’s appointment for something minor to seem downright reasonable. Add in the ridiculous health care system we find ourselves in in the U.S. today and it becomes readily understandable when someone declares they’d “rather see a vet than an MD.”
But beyond all the political and economic baggage is the sense of the self-being divorced from one’s own health care.
Aside from seeing a doctor, you can really only know how healthy you are be being proactive — that is, eating well, exercising, getting enough sleep, all the little health tips that the medical profession recommends, but almost no one actually follows (and even that doesn’t guarantee you don’t have a malady lurking deep inside). And this leads to asking Google. Which results in internet answers.
Is that twitch in your arm the first signs of degenerative neurological disease? According to that website, of course it is! Is your low libido and exhaustion caused by excessive work and stress driven by an over-competitive capitalist culture? Nope. That’s just low T. That unwell feeling you get after eating Chinese takeout? That’s not because you overate, that’s a sign of a food allergy!
So, we’ve got two factors here: One, we all hate the doctor and two, we all think we know what’s wrong with us without actually going to the doctor.
To really find out what’s wrong with us without having to visit a doctor, it’s time to try something else. Something like, say, science, which typically comes in the form of a lab test.
Everly Well, which you may have seen on an episode of television’s Shark Tank, is a direct-to-consumer health testing company that wants to shift the cost and control of your health information out of the hands of doctors and insurers and into your own.
Ever wanted to know what your testosterone levels are? How about your cortisol (the stress hormone) levels? What about your thyroid or food sensitivity, or even STDs? Ever wanted to know all this without stepping foot into a medical building? If so, you’re not alone.
In fact, we were one of those questioning our own health so it was a delightful surprise when Everly Well reached out to The Manual to sample the brand’s.
Quick and easy (the test took five minutes, mostly because we had to work up a ton of saliva), the results were back within a week and fully informative; we found out that all our levels measured (free testosterone, DHEA, cortisol, and estradiol) were completely normal except for elevated DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), which the kit informed us could be the result of weight training and supplement use, specifically creatine. Guilty!
Ready to take the leap and get your own medical info sans doctor? Here’s how to do it.
- Decide which test you’d like to take. Check out Everly Well’s full spectrum of offerings here. We obviously recommend the or the test, but we’re not your doctor and you don’t need one in this situation, so choose which one you’re most interested in.
- Receive the testing kit.
- Enter your bar code on Everly Well’s website to get yourself in their system.
- Provide your sample (whether saliva or a finger prick blood sample) and return the kit to Everly Well in the pre-paid shipping container.
- Wait a few days while your tests are run and are reviewed by a board-certified physician.
- Receive your results in just a few more days!
And that’s it. Once you receive your results, you’re free to use that information to begin your own personalized health improvement plan or provide the results to your doctor at your next visit (whenever that may be) in order to more easily and readily begin a conversation about your immediate (and test-backed) health concerns.
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