women

Test 7

To check…the health of your arteries

Try... Sitting on the floor with your back pushed firmly against a wall and your legs stretched out straight in front of you, toes pointing towards the ceiling. Then, with your arms outstretched, slowly reach forward towards your toes by bending over at the waist. The aim is to see how far you can reach past your toes.

Start worrying if

You can only just reach your toes with your fingertips. And if you can’t even reach that far, be alarmed.

Why it works

Because according to Japanese researchers, how flexible your body is or isn’t is a good reflection of how healthy your arteries are. So the less flexible you are, the stiffer your arteries are likely to be. And for women, not being able to reach past your toes indicates poor flexibility.

Take action

As well as making some dietary changes to eliminate saturated fat – a well-known contributor to atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries – start stretching regularly. One explanation for the study’s findings is that the very same stretching exercises that make you flexible also slow age-related stiffening of the arteries.

Test 8

To check…your risk of melanoma

Try... Counting how many moles you have. Tally up how many you’ve got on your whole body.

Start worrying if

You have got more than 100 moles across your entire body.

Description: Your risk of melanoma

Your risk of melanoma

Why it works

Because having a lot of moles is one of the things that can increase your risk of developing melanoma, along with other risk factors like skin type, UV exposure and whether or not you were sunburnt as a child.

Take action

Commit to having your skin checked regularly by your GP or dermatologist. In between times, you should also check your moles several times throughout the year – whenever a new season rolls over is a good time to do it. Visit melanoma.org.au to learn more about self skin checks.

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