BLOOD TESTS ∙ 4 minutes read

Testing for tiredness and fatigue with the At-Home Health MOT

By Ashton Sheriff

We all know what it’s like to feel absolutely drained. Everyone’s had one of those days when they can barely keep their eyes open at work and have to desperately guzzle coffee in an attempt to revive themselves. For most people, the feelings of tiredness and fatigue can often be resolved with a few nights of good sleep. However, for others, they may persist for weeks or months - which can sometimes indicate an underlying health condition. 

What causes tiredness and fatigue?

Anaemia: iron-deficiency anaemia is a condition caused by a lack of iron in the body. Often, it arises from not getting enough iron in the diet and it can have a significant impact on your health (i.e. it can increase your risk of infection because it affects the immune system). 

Symptoms of iron-deficiency anaemia include tiredness and lack of energy, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, and pale skin. If you’ve experienced symptoms of iron-deficiency anaemia, you should consider taking an At-Home Health MOT to get a full blood count test and measure your ferritin (iron) level, as these tests can tell you if your red blood cell count and iron level are normal. 

Iron-deficiency anaemia is usually treated with iron tablets prescribed by your GP. Dietary changes, such as eating more iron-rich foods, are also recommended to maintain normal iron levels. This is particularly important for vegetarians and vegans, as they are more at risk of iron-deficiency anaemia than meat-eaters (as iron from vegetables, even those that are iron-rich, is not absorbed as well as iron from meat, poultry, and fish). 

Diabetes: diabetes is a disease that causes the level of sugar in the blood to become too high. It can cause extreme fatigue because high blood sugar levels affect the body’s ability to get glucose from the blood into cells to meet our energy requirements. An At-Home Health MOT can tell you if you are at risk of (or currently have) diabetes by measuring your HbA1c level. Your HbA1c level tells you what your average blood sugar levels have been over the last 2-3 months. A high HbA1c level indicates whether you have, or are at risk of developing, diabetes - so it’s worth getting it checked if you’ve been experiencing persistent tiredness and fatigue. 

Low testosterone: one of the main symptoms of low testosterone is feeling tired all the time. There are many potential causes for low testosterone, including obesity, uncontrolled type 2 diabetes, and alcohol abuse. Low testosterone can also lead to other complications, including erectile dysfunction (due to a reduced sex drive) and a reduction in lean muscle mass.

The only way to measure your testosterone level is with a blood test. This can be done in the comfort of your own home with an At-Home Health MOT, which can tell you if you have normal testosterone levels. 

An unhealthy lifestyle: a lack of exercise and unhealthy eating habits can contribute to feelings of tiredness and fatigue. Being overweight can also make you feel more exhausted, as carrying excess weight puts extra strain on your heart. Therefore, cleaning up your diet, exercising regularly, and losing weight can help to give you more energy. 

Test yourself at home for tiredness and fatigue

If you’re experiencing persistent tiredness and fatigue, it’s a good idea to take an At-Home Health MOT. It’s a quick and convenient blood test that can tell you if there is an underlying cause for your fatigue (e.g. anaemia) so that you can take action to treat it. 

There are two types of At-Home Health MOT: the One-Off Health MOT and the Biannual (twice yearly) Health MOT

At-Home Health MOT (One-Off)

A one-time blood test that measures important biomarkers linked to tiredness and fatigue - such as your ferritin and testosterone levels - to indicate if your tiredness is being caused by an underlying condition. It also measures your HbA1c level (to assess your diabetes risk) and includes a full blood count to test for anaemia (as both diabetes and anaemia can cause fatigue).

At-Home Health MOT (Biannual)

A twice-yearly blood test that measures your ferritin, HbA1c, and testosterone levels to help you get to the root cause of your tiredness. It also tests the function of your liver, kidneys, and thyroid, and includes a full blood count to test for anaemia.

The key difference between the Biannual and One-Off Health MOT is that the Biannual MOT lets you track your health over time, as it’s automatically delivered to you every 6 months. This allows you to measure your progress throughout the year and monitor the impact of lifestyle changes you make to help reduce your tiredness and fatigue. 

FREE doctor consultation: both Health MOTs include a free phone consultation with a UK doctor, who will talk you through your results and give personalised health advice based on the outcome of your test. 

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How does the At-Home Health MOT work?

Both the One-Off and Biannual At-Home Health MOTs work in the same way. Simply collect a blood sample using the equipment provided with your kit, post it free of charge to our accredited partner lab, and you will receive your results within 3-5 working days. Once you receive your result, you will be able to book a consultation with a doctor who will explain your results and offer professional medical guidance. 

What else can the At-Home Health MOT test for?

The At-Home Health MOT does more than test for tiredness and fatigue. It also doubles up as a  general health check that tests for a range of other key health indicators, including: 

  • Testosterone level
  • Blood lipid level
  • Vitamin D level
  • Ferritin level
  • Full blood count
  • HbA1c (glycated haemoglobin) level
  • Liver function
  • Kidney function
  • Thyroid function

Each of these health indicators play important roles in your overall health, which is why they’re also included as standard in the At-Home Health MOT. More information about these health indicators and why they’re important can be found in the FAQ section of each At-Home Health MOT page

The bottom line

Although most cases of tiredness can be resolved with a few good nights of sleep, extreme fatigue could be a sign of an underlying condition. If you’ve been experiencing ongoing tiredness and fatigue, it’s best to take an At-Home Health MOT to help you get to the bottom of why that might be. Each At-Home Health MOT includes a free consultation with a doctor who will help you understand your results and can offer advice on how to treat your fatigue.