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When thinking about the health of your heart here are 4 tests that you should have done. 1. the lipid panel. This test will tell you your total cholesterol as well as the LDL (bad cholesterol), the HDL (the protective good cholesterol), and the triglycerides (another fat in the blood that can increase your risk for heart disease). 2. A fasting blood glucose. This is an easy test to get with the lipid panel since you have to fast for 8-12 hours for that test, too. the fasting blood glucose can predict your risk for diabetes, whose presence will raise your risk for heart disease. 3. The BMI or body mass index which is a function of your height and weight. A BMI over 25 is considered overweight and over 30 is considered obese. And 4. a waist circumference. I find this test to be very helpful, especially in patients who are trying to lose weight. As people exercise more they may be gaining more muscle which may slow the decrease in the loss of pounds on the scale but as long as the waist size is decreasing then they shouldn’t be worried. To avoid an increased risk for heart disease the waist should be less than 35 inches for women and less than 40 for men.