You may not know it, but your body holds clues that could help you prevent serious diseases, years before you get a diagnosis from a doctor. The key is knowing how to read the secret signs your body’s trying to give you. Here’s what to look for, courtesy of world-renowned Dr. Mehmet Oz.
- Your height. A study found people who are shorter than 5-foot-2 have a greater chance of living until 100. Researchers believe the gene that determines height is related to the gene that helps the body recover from oxidative stress, the cell damage that comes from the radiation and pollution we’re exposed to every day. No matter how tall you are, there are ways to stretch your life. Add resistance training to your workout to help prevent cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death and disability in North America.
- Another secret sign of disease: Your sense of smell. Here’s a test: Grab a banana and smell it. If you can’t smell anything, you could be at risk for Parkinson’s disease. A study found that people who couldn’t smell bananas, lemons or cinnamon were five times more likely to develop Parkinson’s. That's because the olfactory system – which is the “smell system” of our brains – is one of the earliest parts of the brain affected by the disease. The fix? Load up on Omega-3 foods like wild salmon, shrimp and walnuts, which help build up resistance to the toxins that causes Parkinson’s symptoms.
- A third secret body sign: The length of your legs. Researchers found that women with legs less than 30 inches long have a greater chance of coming down with liver disease, because shorter legs may be a sign of poor childhood nutrition, which plays a role in liver function. The fix? Load up on broccoli – which is packed with the enzymes that help the liver remove waste products.