Those that did provided samples that would allow researchers to study their health in three areas — blood, genetic and microbiome.
“The goal is to look at the aggregate data and see what we can learn about athletes from the data,” said Jacobson.
Once completed, the study will also provide athletes with their individual data through a web portal and phone app from WellnessFX, a company owned by Thorne Research.
In my years as a clinician and writer focused on preventive health, I’ve observed that simply relying on data does not always drive motivation. In fact relying on data alone may mean missing an opportunity to optimize patient engagement.
In today’s digital and mobile age, the following should be key tenets that drive engagement.
Paul Jacobson, the chief executive of WellnessFX, based in San Francisco, said the company complied with all regulations and offered customers the option of consulting with a doctor, nutritionist or registered dietitian to discuss their results.
WellnessFX sells packages ranging from $78 to $988, offering analyses of 25 to 88 blood biomarkers, including vitamins, lipids, cardiovascular markers and thyroid and reproductive hormones. Depending on the results, the company also suggests supplements, foods and exercise.
“You need to offer solutions to people; otherwise, you’re just giving them meaningless information,” Mr. Jacobson said.
I found all three stories inspiring, because they illustrated how motivated patients (and family members) can utilize advances in science and technology to seek the best for themselves and their loved ones.
"We encourage all of our results to be shared with physicians. But to restrict people from even having that information, which is the way it currently exists in some settings, would be unfortunate. People should be aware if they have certain health risks."
It’s legal to order blood tests without consulting a doctor in some two dozen states. But should you?
New products that measure blood biomarkers make counting steps and calories look old-fashioned.
WellnessFX Co-Founder Jim Kean discusses the digital revolution in health care. He speaks on "Market Makers."