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Health Protocols

Blood Testing

The Most Important Blood Tests

Life Extension suggests that a basic battery of tests be performed annually. The recommended male panel consists of a complete blood count (CBC)/chemistry test, homocysteine, free testosterone, estradiol, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), and DHEA. The recommended female panel consists of the CBC/chemistry test, estradiol, progesterone, free testosterone, DHEA, and homocysteine.

In addition to these special male and female panels, the following tests are especially important for men and women over age 40: fasting insulin, fibrinogen, thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), and free triiodothyronine (T3). If a serious abnormality is detected—such as elevated blood glucose (sugar), hormone imbalance, or high cholesterol—testing should be repeated more often than annually to determine the benefits of any therapy you are using to correct the potentially life-shortening abnormality.

We also recommend that you consult your physician regarding any other test(s) that may be appropriate for your individual condition. The following list describes individual tests and ranges that can be used to assess your health and longevity. If your physician is unwilling to prescribe these tests, or if commercial laboratory prices are beyond your budget, we provide information at the end of this protocol about the availability of low-cost mail order blood testing.

Alphabetical Listing Of Blood Tests

Because different labs use different testing methodologies, the reference ranges cited in this protocol only apply to tests done through Life Extension.

A - B | C | D | E | F | G - H | I | L - M | O - P | R - S | T | U - V

ABO Grouping and Rh (D) Typing

This test is used to determine blood grouping and Rh typing. The possible blood types are O positive, O negative, A positive, A negative, B positive, B negative, AB positive, and AB negative.

Alpha 1 Antitrypsin (Serum)

This test is used to detect hereditary decreases in the production of alpha1-antitrypsin (AAT). Decreased or nearly absent levels of AAT can be a factor in chronic obstructive lung disease and liver disease. Elevated levels of AAT can be an indication of inflammatory states (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis, bacterial infection, vasculitis, or neoplasia).

Reference Range: 90–200 mg/dL

Amino Acid Profile (Quantitative)

This panel evaluates 41 amino acids and is used to monitor body functions and nutritional status. Increased amino acid concentrations in plasma may reflect inherited metabolic abnormalities, as in the tyrosemias or phenylketonuria.

Apolipoprotein A-1

This test is used to evaluate survival rate or risk factors for patients with myocardial infarction and peripheral vascular diseases. APO A-1 deficiency states include Tangier disease, HDL deficiency, and hypoalpha-lipoprotein anemia. Apolipoprotein levels may be a better indicator of atherogenic risks than high-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) measures.

Reference Ranges
Men 110–180 mg/dL
Women 110–205 mg/dL

B-Type Natriuretic Peptide

This test is used to support the finding of congestive heart failure.

Reference Range: 0–100 pg/mL

Cancer Antigen (CA-15-3)

The CA 15-3 antigens are tumor-associated serum markers, most specifically for breast tissue, available for monitoring various types of malignancies, evaluating response to therapy, and possibly indicating recurrence.

Reference Range: 0.0–25 U/mL

Cancer Antigen (CA-27.29)

This test is used to monitor metastatic carcinoma of the breast. CA-27.29 is a useful measurement in the monitoring of both the course of disease and the response to therapy because there is a direct correlation between the changing levels of CA-27.29 and clinical status.

Reference Range: 0–38.6 U/mL

Cancer Antigen (CA-125)

CA-125 is a tumor marker for monitoring disease progression in ovarian cancer. It is most useful in monitoring progression or recurrence in cases of known ovarian carcinoma.

Reference Range: 0–34 U/mL

Candida Antibodies Qualitative

This test is used to diagnose systemic candidiasis. This test is qualitative, and if candida antibodies are found, you have had or now have a candida infection.

Carbohydrate Antigen (CA-19–9)

This test is used to monitor gastrointestinal, pancreatic, liver, and colorectal malignancies. This test may also be positive in patients with non-neoplastic disease, inflammatory disease of the bowel, cirrhosis, and autoimmune conditions.

Reference Range: 0–35 U/mL

Carcinoembryonic Antigen (CEA)

This tumor marker is used to determine the extent of disease and its prognosis in cancer patients (especially those with gastrointestinal or breast cancers). It can also be used to monitor the disease and its treatment.

Reference Range:
Nonsmoker: <3.9 ng/mL
Smoker: <5.6 ng/mL

Carotene, Beta

This test is used to confirm carotenoderma and detect fat malabsorption and depressed carotene levels that may be found in cases of steatorrhea.

Reference Range: 3–91 µg/dL

Chemistry Panel/CBC

This panel is a comprehensive blood evaluation including the following 35 tests:

Glucose Fasting

This test directly measures glucose levels and is commonly used in the evaluation of diabetes.

Reference Range: 65–99 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 70–85 mg/dL

Uric Acid

This test is used in the evaluation of gout or recurrent urinary calculus.

Reference Range:
Men (18 years and older): 3.7–8.6 mg/dL
Women (18 years and older): 2.5–7.1 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: <6 mg/dL

BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen)

This test is used to measure liver function and to indirectly assess renal function and glomerular filtration rate.

Reference Range: 6–20 mg/dL

BUN/Creatinine Ratio

This test is used to diagnose impaired renal function. With creatinine, BUN is used to monitor patients on dialysis.

Reference Range: 8:1–20:1


This routine test is used to evaluate and monitor fluid and electrolyte balance and therapy.

Reference Range: 136–144 mmol/L


This routine test is used to evaluate and monitor electrolyte balance and is especially important for cardiac patients.

Reference Range: 3.5–5.2 mmol/L


This test by itself does not provide adequate information. However, as part of a multiphasic testing for electrolytes, it can give an indication of acid-base balance and hydration status.

Reference Range: 97–106 mmol/L

Carbon Dioxide

This test is used to assist in the evaluation of pH and electrolyte status.

Reference Range: 19–28 mmol/L


This test is used to evaluate parathyroid function and calcium metabolism.

Reference Range:
18-59 years old 8.7–10.2 mg/dL
> 59 years old 8.6–10.2 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 9–10 mg/dL

This test is used to measure serum phosphorus levels. An imbalance could indicate the possibility of any number of conditions.

Reference Range for people between 12 and 60 years old: 2.5–4.5 mg/dL

This test is used to assist in the diagnosis of many diseases that affect blood proteins as a whole or one single fraction of protein.

Reference Range:
Total Protein: 6.0–8.5 g/dL
Albumin: 3.5–5.5 g/dL
Globulin: 1.5–4.5 g/dL

Albumin/Globulin Ratio
This test is used to evaluate renal disease and other chronic diseases.

Reference Range: 1.2:1–2.2:1

This test is used to evaluate liver function.

Reference Range:
Total Bilirubin: 0.0–1.2 mg/dL

Alkaline Phosphatase
This test is used to detect and monitor liver or bone disease.

Reference Range: 25–150 IU/L

LDH (Lactate Dehydrogenase)
This test measures the intracellular enzyme LDH, which when present in the blood, supports the diagnosis of injury or disease.

Reference Range: 0–214 IU/L

This test is used to evaluate the possibility of coronary occlusive heart disease or liver disease.

Reference Range: 0–40 IU/L

This test is used to identify liver disease and to distinguish between liver and red blood cell hemolysis as the source of jaundice.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 0–45 IU/L
Women: 0–33 IU/L

This test is used to evaluate many diseases, including iron deficiency anemia and hemochromatosis.

Reference Range:
Women: 35–155 µg/dL
Men: 40–155 µg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 40–100 µg/dL


This test is used to determine the risk of developing coronary heart disease and hyperlipidemias.

Reference Range: 100–199 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 160–180 mg/dL

This test is used to identify the risk of developing coronary heart disease or when disorders in fat metabolism are suspected.

Reference Range: 0–149 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: < 100 mg/dL
Best if any risk factors: < 80 mg/dL
Pre-existing cardiovascular disease: < 60 mg/dL

HDL Cholesterol
This test measures alpha lipoprotein and is used to predict heart disease.

Reference Range: > 39 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 50+ mg/dL

LDL Cholesterol
This test measures beta lipoproteins and is also used to predict heart disease.

Reference Range: 0–99 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 80–100 mg/dL (< 80 mg/dL may be ideal)
Pre-existing/high risk cardiovascular disease: < 70 mg/dL

Ratio of Total Cholesterol to HDL Cholesterol
This test is used to determine the risk of coronary heart disease.

Reference Ranges: Men Women
1/2 average risk 3.4 3.3
Average risk 5.0 4.4
2x average risk 9.6 7.1
3x average risk 23.4 11.0
LE’s Optimal Range:

< 3.4

CBC (Complete Blood Count) with Platelets and Differential

This is a series of tests of the peripheral blood that provides a variety of information about the blood components.

White Blood Cell Count

Reference Range: 4.0–10.5 x10E3/uL

Red Blood Cell Count

Reference Ranges:
Men: 4.14–5.8 x10E6/uL
Women: 3.77–5.28 x10E6/uL


Reference Ranges:
Men: 12.6–17.7 g/dL
Women: 11.1–15.9 g/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: Upper end of reference range


Reference Ranges:
Men: 37.5–51.0%
Women: 34.0–46.6%
LE’s Optimal Range: Upper end of reference range

Red Blood Cell Indices

Mean Corpuscular Volume

Reference Range: 79–97 fL

Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin

Reference Range: 26.6–33 pg

Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration

Reference Range: 31.5–35.7 g/dL

Red Blood Cell Distribution of Width

Reference Range: 12.3–15.4%

Differential Count

Reference Ranges:
Polyneutrophils: 1.8–7.8 x10E3/uL
Lymphocytes: 0.7–4.5 x10E3/uL
Monocytes: 0.1–1.0 x10E3/uL
Eosinophils: 0.0–0.4 x10E3/uL
Basophils: 0.0–0.2 x10E3/uL

Platelet Count

Reference Range: 140–415 x10E3/uL

Cortisol A.M.–P.M.

This test is to measure adrenal function. It is used to diagnose adreno-cortical insufficiency or hypersecretion and Cushing’s syndrome and is also useful in detecting malfunction of the hypothalamic axis.

Reference Ranges:
a.m.: 6.2–19.4 µg/dL
p.m.: 2.3–11.9 µg/dL

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10)

This test is used to check the blood level of CoQ10 and will enable more precise dosing for anyone seeking to achieve and maintain high levels of this critical antioxidant. Coenzyme Q10 is produced by the human body and is necessary for the basic functioning of all cells. It is known to be highly concentrated in heart muscle cells due to the high energy requirements of this cell type.

Reference Ranges: 0.37–2.20 µg/mL
Optimal: 3–7 µg/mL; At least 3 µg/mL for general health, at least 4 µg/mL for cardiovascular issues and up to 7 µg/mL for maximal anti-aging and neurodegenerative protection.


This test is used to evaluate diabetics and monitor insulinoma.

Reference Ranges: 1.1–4.4 ng/mL

C-Reactive Protein (CRP) (Cardiac) (High Sensitivity)

This test is used to assess risk of cardiovascular and peripheral vascular disease.

Reference Ranges:
Low risk < 1.0 mg/L
Average 1.0–3.0 mg/L
High risk > 3.0 mg/L
LE’s Optimal Ranges:
Men: < 0.55 mg/L
Women: < 1.0 mg/L


This test is used to evaluate kidney function. It has also been suggested that cystatin-C might predict the risk of developing chronic kidney disease, thereby signaling a state of 'preclinical' kidney dysfunction.
Reference Ranges: 0.53–0.95 mg/L
LE’s Optimal Range: < 0.91 mg/L

Cytokine Panel

This panel is used to find the source of chronic inflammation after a high CRP reading or the persistence of any chronic inflammatory condition. This panel measures interleukin-1 beta (IL-1b), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-8 (IL-8), and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha). Each is described separately.


This test is a very specific confirmatory test for disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). It is also used for the detection of deep vein thrombosis, acute myocardial infarction, and unstable angina. The Fragment D-Dimer assesses both thrombin and plasmin activity.

Reference Range: 0.0–0.4 µg/mL

Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) Sulfate

This test is used to determine female infertility, amenorrhea, or hirsutism and to aid in the evaluation of excess androgen/adrenocortical disease, including congenital adrenal hyperplasia and adrenal tumors.

Reference Ranges:
15-19 years 115.3-459.6 μg/dL
20–24 years 164.3-530.5 µg/dL
25–34 years 138.5-475.2 µg/dL
35–44 years 102.6-416.3 µg/dL
45–54 years 71.6-375.4 µg/dL
55–64 years 48.9-344.2 µg/dL
65–74 years 30.9-295.6 µg/dL
>74 years 20.8-226.4 µg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 350-500 µg/dL
15-19 years 110.0-433.2 µg/dL
20–24 years 110.0-431.7 µg/dL
25–34 years 84.8-378.0 µg/dL
35–44 years 57.3-279.2 µg/dL
45–54 years 41.2-243.7 µg/dL
55–64 years 29.4-220.5 µg/dL
65–74 years 20.4-186.6 µg/dL
>74 years 13.9-142.8 µg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 275-400 µg/dL

Deoxypyridinoline (Dpd) Cross Link Test

This test can be used to assess bone resorption rates in healthy individuals and in those with enhanced risk of developing metabolic bone disease. Dpd can be used to monitor antiresorptive therapies (which may include bisphosphonates) and osteoporosis.

Reference Range: 2.3–7.4 nmol Dpd/mmol creatinine


This test measures serum concentrations of dihydrotestosterone, which is closely related to testosterone levels but are lower and may indicate hypergonadism or hirsutism.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 30–85 ng/dL
Women: 4–22 ng/dL
LE’s Optimal Range:
Men: 30–50 ng/dL

Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) Acute Infection

This test is used to diagnose a suspected EBV infection (infectious mononucleosis).

EBV Interpretation VCA-IgG VCA-IgM EA-IgG EBV-NA

Acute infection




Convalescent phase





Chronic or reactivated




Old infection



Antibody present: +

Antibody absent: –

ESR Westergren Sedimentation Rate (ESR, Sed Rate Test)

The ESR is a nonspecific test used to detect illness associated with acute and chronic infection, inflammation (collagen-vascular diseases), advanced neoplasm, and tissue necrosis or infarction.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 0–50 years: 0–15 mm/hour
50 years and older: 0–30 mm/hour
Women: 0–50 years: 0–32 mm/hour
50 years and older: 0–40 mm/hour


This test is used to assess hypothalamic and pituitary functions, menopausal status, and sexual maturity. In males it is helpful in the assessment of gynecomastia or feminization syndromes.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 7.6–42.6 pg/mL
Follicular: 12.5–166.0 pg/mL
Ovulation: 85.8–498.0 pg/mL
Luteal: 43.8–211.0 pg/mL
Postmenopausal < 6.0-54.7 pg/mL
Men: 20–30 pg/mL
Pre-menopause: varies with time in cycle max 528 pg/mL
To ameliorate symptoms: 30–50 pg/mL
Typical with Bi-est: 80–100 pg/mL
Restore menstrual cycle: 90–211 pg/mL


This test provides an objective assessment of placental function and fetal normality in high-risk pregnancies. Estriol is the major estrogen in the pregnant female.

Reference Range:
Men or Nonpregnant Women: <2.0 mg/dL

Estrogens Total

Estrogen measurements are used to evaluate sexual maturity, menstrual and fertility problems in females. This test is also used in the evaluation of males with gynecomastia or feminization syndromes. In pregnant women, it is used to indicate fetal-placental health. In patients with estrogen-producing tumors, it can be used as a tumor marker.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 40–115 pg/mL
Optimal: 40–77 pg/mL
Day 1–10: 61–394 pg/mL
Day 11–20: 122–437 pg/mL
Day 21–30: 156–350 pg/mL
Post-menopausal < 40 pg/mL
Post-menopausal 75–200 pg/mL (with HRT)


This test is used to evaluate postmenopausal bleeding due to peripheral conversion of androgenic steroids. Increased estrone levels may be associated with increased levels of circulating androgens and their subsequent peripheral conversion.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 12–72 pg/mL
Follicular phase: 37–138 pg/mL
Midcycle peak: 60–229 pg/mL
Luteal phase: 50–114 pg/mL

Factor VIII Activity

This test is used to evaluate levels of coagulant factor VIII. A deficiency in factor VIII is known as hemophilia A. Elevated levels are associated with a significantly increased risk of ischemic heart disease and with the development of the geriatric syndrome of frailty.

Fasting Glucose and Insulin

These two tests are used to determine elevated levels of glucose and insulin. Excess glucose and insulin are implicated in many age-related diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke, and are a hallmark of mammalian aging. Please note: These tests require a fasting blood level, meaning that a 12-hour fast is required before the collection of a blood sample. Each of these tests is described separately.

  • Glucose: This test is used to detect diabetes mellitus and evaluate carbohydrate metabolism disorders including alcoholism. It is also used to evaluate acidosis, ketoacidosis, dehydration, coma, hypoglycemia, insulinoma, and neuroglycopenia.
  • Insulin: This test is primarily used to measure insulin evaluation in individuals with fasting hypoglycemia. Insulin levels tend to be inappropriately elevated in individuals with insulin-secreting tumors. Fasting hypoglycemia in association with markedly elevated serum insulin levels is considered the determining factor for insulinoma. Insulin levels can be useful in predicting susceptibility to the development of type 2 diabetes, although C-peptide has largely supplanted insulin measurement for this role.

Female Panel

The Female panel consists of a Chemistry Panel, CBC, Free Testosterone, DHEA-S, Estradiol, Progesterone, Homocysteine, and Cardiac CRP. Each of these tests is described separately.


This test is used to evaluate iron reserves in the body and to determine iron deficiency anemia or iron overload.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 30–400 ng/mL
Women: 15–150 ng/mL
LE’s Optimal Range: 50–150 ng/mL

Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH)

This test is used in the determination of menopause and is integral in the evaluation of suspected gonadal failure.

FSH Reference Ranges:


Reference Ranges:
Adult Men: Adult Men:
> 18 years: 1.5–12.4 mIU/mL > 18 years: 1.7–8.6 mIU/mL
Women: Women:
Follicular phase: 3.5–12.5 mIU/mL Follicular phase: 2.4–12.6 mIU/mL
Ovulatory peak: 4.7–21.5 mIU/mL Ovulatory peak: 14.0–95.6 mIU/mL
Luteal phase: 1.7–9.17.7 mIU/mL Luteal phase: 1.0–11.4 mIU/mL
Postmenopausal phase: 25.8–134.8 mIU/mL Postmenopausal phase: 7.7–58.5 mIU/mL
Contraceptives 0.7–5.6 mIU/mL


This test is used to evaluate diabetic control. Fructosamine, rather than glucose level, is an index of longer-term control.

Gamma Glutamyl Transpeptidase

This test is a sensitive indicator of hepatobiliary disease (obstructive jaundice, intrahepatic cholestasis, or pancreatitis). It is also used as an indicator of chronic and heavy alcohol abuse.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 0–65 IU/L
Women: 0-60 IU/L

Glucose (Serum) (Fasting)

This test is used to detect diabetes mellitus. It is used to evaluate carbohydrate metabolism disorders including alcoholism. It is also used to evaluate acidosis, ketoacidosis, dehydration, coma, hypoglycemia, insulinoma, and neuroglycopenia. Please note: These tests require a fasting blood level, meaning that a 12-hour fast is required before the collection of a blood sample.

Reference Ranges:
Normal: 65-99 mg/dL
Pre-Diabetic: 100–125 mg/dL
Diabetic: > 125 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range:: 70–85 mg/dL

Glucose (2 hour postprandial)

Normally, your blood glucose levels increase slightly after you eat. This increase causes your pancreas to release insulin so that your blood glucose levels do not get too high. Blood glucose levels that remain high over time can damage your eyes, kidneys, nerves, and blood vessels. This test measures blood glucose exactly 2 hours after eating.

Reference Ranges:
Normal: 65-139 mg/dL
Pre-Diabetic: 140–199 mg/dL
Diabetic: > 200 mg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range:: 110–125 mg/dL or < 40 mg/dL increase over baseline

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) Beta Subunit, Pregnancy

This test is used to detect the beta subunit of HCG, providing a sensitive, specific test for the detection of early pregnancy, ectopic pregnancy, or threatened abortion.

HCG Beta Subunit, Quantitative (Cancer)

This test is used to detect a tumor marker for certain cancers.

Reference Ranges:
Negative: <10 mIU/mL
Borderline: 10–20 mIU/mL
Positive: >20 mIU/mL

Heavy Metals Profile I, Blood

This test is used to monitor exposure to arsenic, lead, and mercury.

LE’s Optimal Range: As low as possible

Helicobacter (Campylobacter) Pylori, Immunoglobulin G

This test is used as an aid in the diagnosis of H. pylori infection and gastric and duodenal disease.

Reference Ranges:
Negative: < 0.9 U/mL
Equivocal: 0.9–1.0 U/mL
Positive: > 1.0 U/mL

Hemoglobin A1C

This test is most frequently used to assess glucose control in insulin-dependent diabetic patients whose glucose levels are very labile.

Reference Range: 4.8–5.6%
Increased risk for diabetes: 5.7–6.4%
Diabetes: > 6.5%
Glycemic control for adults with diabetes: < 7.0%
Optimal: < 5.0% (ideal)
< 5.6% (good)

Hepatitis Panel (A, B, C), Acute

This test is used as a comprehensive panel for detecting markers for hepatitis A, B, and C virus infections and is used for all stages of infection.

Reference Range: Negative or Positive

(Interpretation included)

Hepatitis B Surface Antibody, Qualitative

This test is useful for evaluation of possible immunity in individuals who are at increased risk of exposure to hepatitis B.

Normal Range: Negative or Positive

Hepatitis C Virus Antibody

This test is used to assess exposure to hepatitis C virus infection.

Reference Range: Negative or Positive


This test is intended for use in screening patients who may be at risk for heart disease and stroke. Homocysteine has been shown to be an independent risk factor for the premature development of coronary artery disease and thrombosis.

Reference Range: 0-15 µmol/L
Optimal: < 8 µmol/L

Studies have shown that even moderate levels of homocysteine pose an increased risk for arteriosclerosis compared with the 20 percent of the population at least risk for arteriosclerosis.

Insulin Fasting

This test is used for insulin measurement in patients with fasting hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia. High fasting insulin is a sign of insulin resistance and the start of Type 2 diabetes or syndrome X.

Reference Range: 2.6–24.9 µIU/mL
LE’s Optimal Range: < 5 µIU/mL

Interleukin-1 beta (IL-1b)

This test is used to identify elevated levels of interleukin-1 beta, which have been implicated in sepsis, cachexia, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic myelogenous leukemia, asthma, psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, anorexia, AIDS, physical stress, anxiety and panic disorders, and graft-versus-host disease associated with bone marrow transplants. Higher-than-normal levels of IL-1b have been associated with a significant increased risk of myocardial infarction independent of cardio-CRP levels.

Reference Range:
IL-1B <2.9 pg/mL

Interleukin-6 (IL-6)

This test is used to identify elevated levels of interleukin-6. Elevated IL-6 serum or plasma levels may occur in sepsis, autoimmune diseases, lymphomas, AIDS, alcoholic liver disease, tumor development, Alzheimer’s disease, and in concert with infections or transplant rejection. Elevated levels of IL-6 may be associated with an increased risk of heart attack or stroke.

Reference Range:
IL-6: 0–14 pg/mL

Interleukin-8 (IL-8)

This test is used to identify elevated levels of IL-8. Elevated concentrations are observed in psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic polyarthritis, tumor development, and hepatitis C.

Reference Range:
IL-8 7.8 pg/mL

Iron and Total Iron Binding (TIB)

This test is used in the diagnosis of anemia. TIB levels are often used to monitor the course of patients receiving hyperalimentation.

Reference Range:
Women: 35–155 µg/dL
Men: 40–155 µg/dL
LE’s Optimal Range: 40–100 µg/dL
TIBC: 250–450 µg/dL

Insulin-Like Growth Factor I

This test is used to determine acromegaly, in which somatomedin-C and insulin-like growth factor is increased. It is also used to evaluate hypopituitarism. Low values may indicate hypopituitarism, malnutrition, diabetes mellitus, Laron dwarfism, hypothyroidism, maternal deprivation syndrome, pubertal delay, cirrhosis, hepatoma, anorexia nervosa, nonfunctioning pituitary tumors, constitutional delay of growth, and some cases of short stature. High values occur with adolescence, true precocious puberty, pregnancy, obesity, pituitary gigantism, acromegaly, and diabetic retinopathy.

Reference Ranges:
20 years 127–424 ng/mL 51–55 years 87–238 ng/mL
21–25 years 116–358 ng/mL 56–60 years 81–225 ng/mL
26–30 years 117–329 ng/mL 61–65 years 75–212 ng/mL
31–35 years 115–307 ng/mL 66–70 years 69–200 ng/mL
36–40 years 109–284 ng/mL 71–75 years 64–188 ng/mL
41–45 years 101–267 ng/mL 76–80 years 59–177 ng/mL
46–50 years 94–252 ng/mL 81–85 years 55–166 ng/mL


This test is used to diagnose pancreatitis or inflammatory bowel disease. An injured or diseased pancreas will produce abnormal amounts of this enzyme.

Reference Range: 0–59 U/L

Lipoprotein (a)

This test is used to measure excess small dense lipoprotein. Elevated lipoprotein (a) is a strong indicator of premature coronary disease and atherosclerotic vascular disease and is associated with increased risk of cardiac death in patients with acute coronary syndromes and coronary bypass procedures.

Reference Ranges: 0–30 mg/dL
Desirable: <20mg/dL
Borderline High Risk: 20–30 mg/dL
High Risk: 31–50 mg/dL
Very High Risk: >50 mg/dL

Magnesium (Serum)

This test is used to evaluate magnesium levels. Decreased levels of magnesium have been associated with cardiac arrhythmias, hypocalcemia, hypokalemia, long-term hyperalimentation, intravenous therapy, diabetes mellitus (especially during treatment of ketoacidosis), alcoholism and other types of malnutrition, malabsorption, hyperparathyroidism, dialysis, pregnancy, and hyperaldosteronism. Magnesium deficiency produces neuromuscular disorders causing weakness, tremors, tetany, and convulsions. Renal loss of magnesium occurs with cis-platinum therapy. Increased magnesium levels relate mostly to individuals in renal failure or with Addison’s disease. Marked increases may be found in individuals who take magnesium salts (e.g., antacids, which contain magnesium) or magnesium-containing cathartics and in pregnant women with severe preeclampsia or eclampsia who are receiving magnesium sulfate as an anticonvulsant. High magnesium levels are manifested in decreased reflexes, somnolence, and heart block.

Reference Range: 1.6–2.6 mg/dL
LE's Optimal Range: 2.07–2.31 mg/dL

Magnesium (Rbc)

This test is used to evaluate magnesium deficiency.

Reference Range: 4.2–6.8 mg/dL

Male Panel

This panel consists of a chemistry panel, CBC, free testosterone, DHEA-S, PSA, estradiol, homocysteine, and cardiac CRP. Each of these tests is described separately.


This panel consists of a male panel + total testosterone, progesterone, FSH and LH, and TSH. Each of these tests is described separately.


This test is used to evaluate bone disease characterized by increased bone turnover. Osteocalcin has been found to be elevated in Paget disease of the bone, cancer accompanied by bone metastases, primary hyperparathyroidism, and renal osteodystrophy. Osteocalcin levels may also be used to monitor therapeutic results.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 3.2–39.6 ng/mL
Premenopausal Women: 4.9–30.9 ng/mL
Postmenopausal Women: 9.4–47.4 ng/mL

Parathyroid Hormone, Intact

This test is used in diagnosing parathyroid disease, diagnosing and monitoring other diseases of calcium homeostasis, and monitoring patients undergoing renal dialysis.

Intact Parathyroid Hormone Calcium Interpretation
15–65 pg/mL 8.6–10.2 mg/dL Normal
>65 pg/mL >10.2 mg/dL Primary Hyperparathyroidism
>65 pg/mL <10.2 mg/dL Secondary Hyperparathyroidism
<65 pg/mL >10.2 mg/dL Nonparathyroid Hypercalcemia
<15 pg/mL <8.6 mg/dL Hypoparathyroidism
15–65 pg/mL <8.6 mg/dL Nonparathyroid Hypocalcemia


This test is used to determine ovarian failure, hirsutism, adrenal carcinoma, and Cushing’s syndrome.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 10–200 ng/dL
Women: 10–230 ng/dL
LE’s Optimal Range:
Men: 125–175 ng/dL; max 200 ng/dL
Women: 130–180 ng/dL; max 230 ng/dL


This test is used to establish the presence of a functional corpus luteum, or luteal cell function, confirm body temperature for occurrence of ovulation, obtain indication of day of ovulation, evaluate the functional state of corpus luteum in infertile patients, assess placental function during pregnancy, and evaluate ovarian function.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 0.0–0.5 ng/mL
Follicular: 0.1–0.9 ng/mL
Luteal: 1.8–23.9 ng/mL
Ovulation: 0.1–12.0 ng/mL
Menopausal: 0.0–0.1 ng/mL
Still having menstrual cycle: 15–23 ng/mL (at day 21)
Menopause: 2–6 ng/mL
Max: 23 ng/mL


This test is used to assess inappropriate lactation and is also useful in the detection of prolactin-secreting pituitary tumors. Elevated prolactin is associated with anovulation and amenorrhea. Prolactin can also be elevated in hypothyroidism when TSH is high. Some studies indicate that elevated prolactin may promote breast and prostate cancer growth.

Reference Ranges:
Men: 4.0–15.2 ng/mL
Women: 4.8–23.3 ng/mL

Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA)

PSA is produced by normal, hyperplastic, and cancerous prostatic tissue. Serum PSA has been found to be the most sensitive marker for monitoring patients with prostate cancer and to enhance efficacy in monitoring progression of disease and response to therapy.

Reference Range: 0–4.0 ng/mL
LE’s Optimal Range: 0–1.0 ng/mL (ideal)
0–2.5 ng/mL (good)

PSA Free-to-Total Ratio

This test is used in men to measure the percentage of free PSA relative to the amount of total PSA. This ratio helps determine the probability of prostate cancer. The lower the percentage of free PSA, the higher the possibility of prostate cancer. In the following table, the percentages given under each age group are the percentages of men with cancer whose percentage of free PSA falls within the given range.

Reference Ranges: 0–4.0 ng/mL
Free PSA 50–64 Years 65–75 Years
0.00–10.00% 56% 55%
10.01–15.00% 24% 35%
15.01–20.00% 17% 23%
20.01–25.00% 10% 20%
>25% 5% 9%

Prothrombin Time

This test is used to evaluate the adequacy of the extrinsic system and common pathway in the clotting mechanism. Prothrombin time testing provides a control for long-term anticoagulant therapy, which usually involves the use of a coumarin derivative (e.g., Coumadin®).

Partial Thromboplastin Time

This test is used to evaluate the intrinsic coagulation system. It is also used to monitor heparin therapy to aid in detecting classical hemophilia A, Christmas disease, and congenital deficiencies of Factors II, V, VIII, IX, X, XI, and XII. Partial thromboplastin time is also used to screen for the presence of dysfibrinogenemia, disseminated intravascular coagulation, liver failure, congenital hypofibrinogenemia, vitamin K deficiency, congenital deficiency of Fitzgerald factor, congenital deficiency of prekallikrein, high molecular weight kininogen, and circulatory anticoagulant.

Reticulocyte Count

This test is used to evaluate erythropoietic activity, which increases in acute and chronic hemorrhage and in hemolytic anemias. It is also used to evaluate erythropoietic response to antianemic therapy.

Reverse T3

This test is useful in evaluating thyroid function and metabolism and is also used to evaluate euthyroid sick patients with low T3 concentrations.

Reference Range: 9.2–24.1 ng/dL

Rheumatoid Arthritis Factor

This test is used in the differential diagnosis and prognosis of arthritic disorders.

Reference Range: Negative: <14.0 IU/mL


This test is used to monitor selenium deficiency and occupational exposure. Because selenium is a very important supplement for the extension of life, optimal levels are in the upper half of the normal range.

Reference Ranges:
Environmental Exposure: 79–326 µg/L
Normal Range: 46–143µg/L

Sex Hormone Binding Globulin

This test is used to monitor sex hormone binding globulin levels that are under the positive control of estrogens and thyroid hormones and suppressed by androgens. Decreased levels are found in hirsutism, virilism, obese postmenopausal women, and women with diffuse hair loss. Increased levels are present in hyperthyroidism, testicular feminization, cirrhosis, male hypogonadism, pregnancy, prepubertal children, and women using oral contraceptives.

Reference Ranges:
Men (20–49 years old): 16.5–55.9 nmol/L
Men (> 49 years old): 19.3–76.4 nmol/L
Women (20–49 years old): 24.6–122.0 nmol/L
Women (> 49 years old): 17.3–125.0 nmol/L
LE’s Optimal Ranges:
Men: approx. 30–40 nmol/L, max 48 nmol/L
Women: approx. 60 –80 nmol/L, max 110 nmol/L

Sex Hormone Profile

This is a test for total estrogens, progesterone and free testosterone.


This is a screening test to identify patients with growth hormone deficiency, pituitary insufficiency, and acromegaly.

Normal Ranges:
Age (years)
21–25 116–358 ng/mL
26–30 117–329 ng/mL
31–35 115–307 ng/mL
36–40 109–284 ng/mL
41–45 101–267 ng/mL
46–50 94–252 ng/mL
51–55 87–238 ng/mL
56–60 81–225 ng/mL
66–70 75–212 ng/mL
71–75 64–188 ng/mL
76–80 59–177 ng/mL
81–85 55–166 ng/mL

T3 Uptake

This is a thyroid function test for the diagnosis of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

Reference Range: 24–39%

Testosterone Free (Direct)

This test is used to evaluate hirsutism and masculinization in women and to evaluate testicular function in clinical states in which the testosterone binding proteins may be altered (obesity, cirrhosis, thyroid disorders).

Reference Ranges:
20–29 years 9.3–26.5 pg/mL
30–39 years 8.7–25.1 pg/mL
40–49 years 6.8–21.5 pg/mL
50–59 years 7.2–24.0 pg/mL
60+ years 6.6–18.1 pg/mL
0-19 years Not established
>19 years 0.0–4.2 pg/mL
LE’s Optimal Range:
Men: 20–25 pg/mL
Women: 2.1–4.2 pg/mL

Testosterone, Free (with Total)

This test is used to evaluate hirsutism and masculinization in women and to evaluate testicular function in clinical states in which the testosterone binding proteins may be altered (obesity, cirrhosis, thyroid disorders).

Testosterone, Total

This test is used to evaluate gonadal and adrenal function. It is helpful in diagnosing hypogonadism, hypopituitarism, Klinefelter’s syndrome, and impotence in men and hirsutism, anovulation, amenorrhea, and virilism in women.

Reference Range:
Men: 348–1197 ng/dL
Women (20 - 49 years old): 8–48 ng/dL
Women (> 49 years old): 3–41 ng/dL
LE’s Optimal Range:
Men: 700–900 ng/dL
Women: 35–45 ng/dL, max: 48 ng/dL

Thrombin and Antithrombin III

These two tests are used to evaluate the intrinsic coagulation system. They can determine heparin effect, warfarin anticoagulant therapy, liver failure, and DIC.

  • Thrombin: This test is used to evaluate the fibrinogen-to-fibrin reaction. It is used to determine severe hypofibrinogenemia, dysfibrinogenemia, and the presence of heparin-like anticoagulants. Thrombin levels are used to confirm and monitor DIC and fibrinolysis and can be used to monitor therapy with heparin. This test can also be used to monitor fibrinolytic therapy.
  • Antithrombin III: This test is used to evaluate the hypercoagulable state, fibrinogenolytic state, and response to heparin. Antithrombin deficiency is associated with severe cirrhosis, chronic liver failure, DIC, thrombolytic therapy, pulmonary embolism, nephrotic syndrome, or postsurgical state (especially liver transplant or partial hepatectomy).

Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)

This is a function test for thyroid disease to differentiate between primary and secondary hypothyroidism. Some doctors believe that any TSH levels greater than 2.0 mIU/mL should be considered suspect for subclinical hypothyroidism if symptoms are present.

Reference Range: 0.45–4.50 µIU/mL
LE’s Optimal Range: 1–2 µIU/mL

Thyroxine​ (T4) Total

This is one of the first tests done in assessing thyroid function. It is used to diagnose thyroid function and to monitor replacement and suppressive therapy.

Reference Range: 4.5–12.0 µg/dL
Men: 8.5–10.5 µg/dL
Women (< 60 years): 9–11 µg/dL
Women (> 60 years): 8.5–10.7 µg/dL

Thyroxine (T4) Free, Direct

This test is used to evaluate thyroid function in patients who may have protein abnormalities that could affect total T4 levels. It is also used to diagnose thyroid function and monitor replacement and suppressive therapy.

Reference Range: 0.82–1.77 ng/dL
Optimal: upper 3rd of range

Tri-Iodothyronine (T3)

This is a test for thyroid function used particularly in the diagnosis of T3 thyrotoxicosis and hyperthyroidism.

Reference Range: 85–205 ng/dL

Tri-Iodothyronine (T3) Free

This test is used to evaluate thyroid function and assess abnormal binding protein disorders.

Reference Range: 2.0–4.4 pg/mL
Optimal: 3.4–4.2 pg/mL

Troponin I

This test is used to detect cardiac injury, predict mortality in unstable cases of angina, and serve as a marker for perioperative myocardial infarction.

Reference Range: 0.00-0.04 ng/mL

Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha (TNF-alpha)

This test is used to identify elevated levels of tumor necrosis factor-alpha. TNF-alpha levels may be elevated in sepsis, cachexia, AIDS, hepatitis C, transplant rejection, various infectious, and autoimmune diseases.

Reference Range: 0.0-8.1 pg/mL

Urinalysis, Routine

This test is used to detect abnormalities in urine and diagnose and manage renal disease and metabolic disease, urinary tract infection and neoplasm, systemic diseases, and inflammatory or neoplastic disease.

Vitamin D, 25-Hydroxy

Vitamin D is essential for life. So much so that our bodies can manufacture this critical nutrient in the skin upon sun exposure. However, most people do not get enough sun exposure to maintain optimal levels of vitamin D in their bodies; risks of skin cancer and sun damage dissuade many of us from spending much time in the sun (Norman 2008).

But sun exposure is not the only way to increase your vitamin D levels. Supplemental vitamin D also efficiently boosts blood levels of vitamin D, which are typically measured as 25-hydroxyvitamin D. This is fortunate, because research over many years has firmly established vitamin D as a key mediator of health throughout the body. Classically, vitamin D was thought to primarily support calcium homeostasis, but it is now known that vitamin D has many other crucial functions, including helping balance the immune system (Bscheider 2016), suppressing abnormal cell growth (Ness 2015; Watanabe 2015), and supporting brain health (Groves 2014).

Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with a host of diseases ranging from cancer (Kurylowicz 2007; Nabi 2015) and cardiovascular disease (Mozos 2015) to osteoporosis (Sahota 2000) and cognitive impairment (Etgen 2012). Thus, maintaining an optimal blood level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D is of paramount importance.

Reference Range: 30 – 100 ng/mL
LE's Optimal Range: 50 – 80 ng/mL


Disclaimer and Safety Information

This information (and any accompanying material) is not intended to replace the attention or advice of a physician or other qualified health care professional. Anyone who wishes to embark on any dietary, drug, exercise, or other lifestyle change intended to prevent or treat a specific disease or condition should first consult with and seek clearance from a physician or other qualified health care professional. Pregnant women in particular should seek the advice of a physician before using any protocol listed on this website. The protocols described on this website are for adults only, unless otherwise specified. Product labels may contain important safety information and the most recent product information provided by the product manufacturers should be carefully reviewed prior to use to verify the dose, administration, and contraindications. National, state, and local laws may vary regarding the use and application of many of the treatments discussed. The reader assumes the risk of any injuries. The authors and publishers, their affiliates and assigns are not liable for any injury and/or damage to persons arising from this protocol and expressly disclaim responsibility for any adverse effects resulting from the use of the information contained herein.

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