What A Hormone Test Says About Your Health
Hormones are chemical substances produced and excreted by the bodys endocrine system. They travel through the bloodstream and help regulate various organs and body functions.
A hormone test can check for hormonal imbalances. Meaning it can determine whether you have too much or too little of certain hormones.
Hormonal imbalance suggests the presence of an underlying health problem.
However, it can also be caused by aging, stress, and an unhealthy lifestyle such as poor diet and lack of sleep.
Depending on the type of test, hormones can reveal your health. There are three types of hormone testing:
What Does The Test Measure
At-home thyroid tests may measure thyroid hormones and/or thyroid antibodies. Thyroid hormones are produced by the thyroid. Thyroid antibodies harm thyroid tissue or cause the thyroid to produce too much or too little thyroid hormones. At-home thyroid tests may measure one or more of these thyroid levels.
Thyroid hormones serve many functions, including to help the body use energy, regulate temperature, and maintain the health of organs such as the brain, heart, and muscles. Hormones that may be included in at-home thyroid tests include:
Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system in response to foreign substances like viruses and bacteria. Sometimes antibodies mistakenly attack healthy cells in the body, which is called an autoimmune response. Autoimmune disorders of the thyroid develop when thyroid antibodies attack healthy thyroid cells. At-home thyroid tests may look for thyroid antibodies, including:
- Thyroid peroxidase antibody : Detection of TPOab may be a sign of Hashimoto thyroiditis or Graves disease. These are types of autoimmune disorders that can cause abnormal thyroid function.
- Antithyroglobulin antibody test : Patients with Hashimoto thyroiditis or Graves disease may also have autoantibodies against thyroglobulin, but this test is not typically necessary to diagnose autoimmune disorders of the thyroid. This test may be ordered by a doctor when monitoring patients with a certain type of thyroid cancer.
Choosing The Best Type Of Hormone Test
At-home blood hormone testing is the best option if you want to check for:
- Sexual dysfunction
- Ovarian reserve
- Chronic stress.
It’s also a great way to test for various diseases including diabetes, prostate cancer, and PCOS.
You can use it to monitor hormone levels and test your fertility, especially when taking pills or injectable hormone replacement therapy .
Saliva testing works can help you monitor hormone levels while taking topical hormone therapy. Examples include HRT gels and creams.
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Best For Most People: Thyroid Test
The LetsGetChecked Thyroid Test evaluates thyroid function via analysis of three biomarkers:
- Thyroid-stimulating hormone
- Free triiodothyronine
This test is ideal for most people because it can effectively indicate whether you have an underlying thyroid disorder. Unless you are symptomatic or have other reasons to suspect that you have a particular thyroid disorder , we recommend this test as the first step in checking your thyroid health. It tests the three primary values related to thyroid function these serve as the solid starting point to identify whether there is likely a thyroid problem.
A Note From Dr Crawford
You dont need to invest in upfront doctors visits. I am offering you this in-home salivary adrenal and hormone test kit that tests the exact hormones of my proven protocol, The Crawford Hormone Revitalization Method.
The Naturkur Wellness test kit has 9 parameters tested including all of your adrenal and sex hormones. Some of which you cant get anywhere else! Ive been perfecting my unique approach for over 14 years so you are going to be able to see what hormones are high and which ones are low. Plus, youll be able to see the hormones of your sleep-wake cycle and the total picture will help determine what stage of adrenal fatigue you are in.
No more throwing random supplements hoping to feel better, youll know exactly what you need to fix. Purchase your kit now and breathe a sigh of relief.
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Best Basic Hormone Test For Females: Letsgetchecked Female Hormone Test
- Price: around $139 for a one-time purchase, $90.30 per test for a quarterly subscription
- Sample type: finger prick blood sample
- Sends results in: 2-5 days
The LetsGetChecked Female Hormone Test checks levels of:
A person needs to give a blood sample using a finger prick technique described in the kits instructions.
Once the lab receives the sample, the company states that a person can view their results within 5 days.
It also states that its team of physicians previews orders and checks results. Nurses are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to answer any questions.
This LetsGetChecked Female Hormone Test costs $139 for a one-off testing kit. The following subscription options are also available, which offer discounts on tests:
- quarterly: $90.30
- semi-annually: $103.20
- annually: $109.65
The benefits of this test include its access to a nursing team to discuss test results. The test can help start conversations about fertility, but it is not a substitute for advice from a doctor.
What Happens During An Estrogen Test
If you are tested at your provider’s office or a lab, you will provide a blood or urine sample. If you use an at-home test, the sample is usually saliva .
For a blood test: A health care professional will take a blood sample from a vein in your arm, using a small needle. After the needle is inserted, a small amount of blood will be collected into a test tube or vial. You may feel a little sting when the needle goes in or out. This usually takes less than five minutes.
For a urine test: You’ll need to collect all your urine during a 24-hour period. This is called a 24-hour urine sample test. You will be given a special container to collect your urine and instructions on how to collect and store your samples. Your provider will tell you what time to start. The test generally includes the following steps:
- To begin, urinate in the toilet as usual. Do not collect this urine. Write down the time you urinated.
- For the next 24 hours, collect all your urine in the container.
- During the collection period, store the urine container in a refrigerator or in a cooler with ice.
- 24 hours after starting the test, try to urinate if you can. This is the last urine collection for the test.
- Return the container with your urine to your provider’s office or the laboratory as instructed.
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How Reliable Are Home Thyroid Tests
Home thyroid tests from reputable companies are usually reliable if you perform the test correctly. To ensure quality and accuracy, choose a company with CAP accreditation and CLIA certification.
Compared with tests done in a healthcare setting, home thyroid tests are less accurate and reliable. Theyre not a replacement for routine exams at a doctors office.
Why Would Someone Use An At
First, the kits might be an easy way to get a first glance at your thyroid health, especially if you have a sneaking suspicion that something could be off.
The kits are a great option for anyone looking to get more information on their thyroid function. They can be ordered by the consumer rather than having to go to a doctor to send your lab requisition, says endocrinolgist Sapna Shah MD of Paloma Health.
People experience all types of side effects from poor thyroid health, and starting with a thyroid screening can help to narrow things down and get to the root of the issue, Dr. Shapiro adds. On the flip side, theyre also for people who might already have a diagnosed condition and require regular lab results, he also notes.
When getting to a lab is difficult at-home tests can be a nice way to access care and information, says Dr. Shah.
And then theres the aspect of social distancing and safety: People are leaning towards at-home treatments now more than ever because of COVID, Dr. Shapiro says. Staying out of busy waiting rooms is a good enough reason alone.
At-home thyroid tests can also help cut down on costs and co-pays, as the test itself can be bought for a single fee. For example, the Everlywell kit tests for three main thyroid hormones: TSH, T3, and T4, as well as thyroid antibodies. It costs $99, which could be less than a doctors visit, copay, lab costs, or any potential out-of-network fees, depending on your health coverage.
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What Do The Results Mean
Your test results will mean different things depending on:
- The reasons for having the test
- The type of estrogen that was measured
- The results of other tests you may have had
Talk with your provider to find out what your results mean for your health. Because estrogen levels often change, you may need to be tested more than once to look for a trend in your estrogen levels over time.
Learn more about laboratory tests, reference ranges, and understanding results.
How Do You Know If A Thyroid Test Kit Is Reputable
First, its important that the test kit itself is certified by Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments , which ensures quality laboratory testing. Youll also want to check if they are certified by the College of American Pathologists , which ensures best practices regarding obtaining accuracy of test results and meeting other important required standards.
According to Dr. Shah, The lab Paloma Health uses is a CLIA and CAP-certified lab, government-certified at the gold standard of the lab industry. The labs are tested versus commercially available labs to be equivalent in their results.
The same goes for other test kits made by other companies: Other services who use CLIA- and CAP-certified labs will also provide accurate readings, she says.
Dr. Shapiro also recommends asking your endocrinologist or healthcare provider if they can recommend a reputable thyroid test kit.
The good news is that at-home test kits, when bought by a reputable provider, are generally very reliable. According to a study in the Journal of Medical Screening, they offer accurate and inexpensive testing.
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What About High Cortisol
Even having too high cortisol can be a problem, we have noticed in ourselves for years. Besides the insomnia it can cause in many of us at bedtime, or frequent wake-ups right after we did fall asleep, we also saw how high cortisol pushed our Reverse T3 higher and higher, which will also make us more hypothyroid. RT3 is an inactive thyroid hormone.
What Is The Best Way To Test Female Hormones
The best way to test female hormones depends on the reasons for testing hormone levels and the individuals circumstances. A person can use tests to indicate the presence of potential health conditions and monitor existing conditions.
However, a person should not use at-home hormone tests to replace the advice of a doctor.
Female hormone tests can help assess symptoms that may be due to hormonal imbalances, such as:
- irregular periods
- skin problems, such as acne
- hot flashes and night sweats
- vaginal dryness
Getting an in-person test conducted by a medical professional is more likely to yield a quality sample and provide a better test. However, people with busy schedules, limited access to healthcare, or who need frequent testing may find that at-home testing better meets their needs.
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Companies We Recommend For Private Thyroid Tests In The Uk
Before ordering private thyroid tests in the UK, read about getting a diagnosis and thyroid function tests to see which might be relevant for you. If you cant get the tests done by your clinician, then consider ordering from our partner private testing companies.
Be aware that biotin Biotin “a vitamin found in small amounts in many foods such as eggs, milk, or bananas. Commonly used for hair loss, brittle nails, nerve damage, and many other conditions” can affect FT4 levels if you take more than 20mg a day. You should stop taking biotin at least two days before taking the test if you take more than 20mg. For more information go to
Thyroid UK staff are not qualified to interpret the test results for you. This may be done by your NHS doctor or a private doctor or practitioner. Thyroid UK has a list of Private Doctors & Practitioners who may be able to help you. You can also request a consultation from a BANT-registered nutritional therapist or join our online community to discuss your test results with other members.
Every Thursday Medichecks will offer discounts on various tests. To check these out click here.
Order your test online or call 03450600600 and get a 10% discount using code THYROIDUK10 . A doctors report and private thyroid test interpretation are included in the fee.
Healthlabs: Our Top Choice For In
Some people would prefer to test in a controlled lab setting and not administer a test themselves. HealthLabs provides an excellent array of in-lab thyroid tests. They are easily our top recommendation for in-lab thyroid testing because:
- You can order your test conveniently from home.
- Theres no appointment necessary.
- With over 4,500 lab locations nationwide, most people find a very convenient lab location near them.
- Labs are high-quality the same labs that analyze tests from doctors offices, and the same testing methodology.
- Because of the possibility of same-day testing, you can have results within just 2-3 days of ordering the test.
- HealthLabs thyroid testing options include thyroid panels and single-measurement tests, all of which are reasonably priced.
One downside to the structure of their thyroid testing is that their most comprehensive testing panel doesnt test for free T3. Rather, it calculates the value by inserting T4 and the overall thyroxine-binding globulin in the blood into an equation. If you want to get a more accurate measurement of T3, youll have to use the companys more expensive T3 test. You can learn more at our full HealthLabs review.
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Which Test Does What
Cost £149 Type of test SalivaWhat it promises 90+ personalised reports about your ancestry, health, wellness and more.What it delivers The most comprehensive results, but most feel arbitrary why would I need to know what colour my eyes are most likely to be? Youre unlikely to have heard of most of the genetic conditions, so its hard to see how this could be useful to many.
Cost £179Type of test Cheek swabWhat it promises Discover how your genes affect your fitness and nutrition… unlock your full health potential.What it delivers Data that, on first reading, doesnt seem to have much real-world application. It includes a very good consultation with a sports or nutrition professional, though, who can help you write a personalised plan.
Cost £69 for an advanced testType of test Blood sampleWhat it promises The advanced test checks for signs of heart disease, liver disease and diabetes. Plus a look at four key nutrients required for optimal health.What it delivers A quick and sleek service, with green for good, red for bad, plus personalised advice from a GP and tips on what action to take .
Cost £139Type of test Stool sampleWhat it promises Learn how microbes can protect your gut from disease understand how your diet affects your gut bacteria.What it delivers At the very least, youll come away with a better understanding of what various vitamins do. Plus the food recommendations are updated weekly and suggest interesting new foods to try.
How Do I Interpret My Thyroid Test Results
The interpretation of thyroid blood tests can also be problematic. Reference ranges determine low, normal, or high levels of thyroid hormones. Many test reports will display your results next to a numerical representation of these ranges so you can see whether it falls safely within them. We particularly appreciate Everlywell here, as they show you a visual representation of the range with your measurement plotted on it.
That way, you can see how close to the high or low end of a typical range your results lie. That makes it a lot easier to visualize your thyroid health than a number like 3.3 pg/mL.
While these ranges are based on many studies, what is normal to the population is not necessarily typical to the individual. Each person has a different hormonal and chemical composition, and deviations from regular references may be normal for the individual.
Additionally, because these references arise from statistics and averages, the closer the test results are to either the lower or higher limit, the greater the uncertainty of whether the patient has thyroid disease. Likewise, if results are within the reference range but close to the limits, symptoms may still be present.
For these reasons, you should see blood tests as one portion of a diagnosis that includes symptoms, medical history, a physical examination, and imaging .
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When Should I Get An At
Thyroid testing is tailored to a persons specific health needs, and there are no universal guidelines for the appropriate use of at-home thyroid testing. Many people choose at-home thyroid tests because they are curious about their own health. However, diagnosing and monitoring thyroid disorders require the interpretation and advice of a physician.
What Should You Know Before Taking A Saliva Test
Before you start, here are some important things to keep in mind:
- Do not smoke or consume alcohol on the day of your test.
- Avoid eating or drinking anything before 30 minutes that may affect the results, such as herbal teas and medications .
- Do not brush your teeth, floss, or use mouthwash before taking your sample
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