If you'd like a better understanding of the life insurance lab results that are documented in the "Preferred Best" project, you have come to the right place. Below we will discuss what are considered the normal ranges for for the following tests:
For a more in-depth view of the pre-existing conditions being tested for, click here.
Nearly all life insurance carriers have their own height and weight tables. Because there are considerable company differences in the builds they will allow for specific rating classes, it is all the more important to use an independent broker with access to multiple carriers. That being said, your BMI or Body Mass Index can be easily calculated at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) site here. Your results will fit into one of the four ranges below:
If your BMI is less than 18.5, it falls within the underweight range.
If your BMI is 18.5 to 24.9, it falls within the normal or Healthy Weight range.
If your BMI is 25.0 to 29.9, it falls within the overweight range.
If your BMI is 30.0 or higher, it falls within the obese range.
As a general rule applicants in the healthy range will get the best offer followed by the overweight group. The underweight and obese groups will be scrutinized for complications associated with their weight. Nearly everybody is insurable, but at significantly different premium levels.
For a more in depth discussion about allowable build for life insurance applicants please the post on life insurance and obesity.
Just like with height and weight, most life insurance carriers will have a their own requirements for allowable blood pressure. The following chart from the American Heart Association gives general parameters for both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
Elevated blood pressure is of concern to insurers because it often foretells stroke and cardiac concerns. The good news is that blood pressure medication is readily available and generally does not pose a threat to getting "preferred" or even "preferred plus" rates.
For a more in depth discussion about blood pressure and life insurance, please visit life insurance with high blood pressure...everything you need to know.
The lipid section on your life insurance lab results is usually broken into three sections your HDL and LDL cholesterol , the ratio between HDL/LDL and your triglyceride count.
Cholesterol is wax like compound delivered by the liver (and fatty foods) that can build up and be the proximate cause of heart disease. HDL or high density lipoproteins is considered "good" cholesterol ans LDL or low density lipoproteins are 'bad" cholesterol. the following chart from Medicine.net gives the normal ranges.
The good news for folks with cholesterol issues, much like high blood pressure, is that you can still qualify for " preferred plus" rates. For a more detailed discussion on obtaining life insurance with high cholesterol please visit life insurance with high cholesterol ...what you need to know.
Life insurance lab results will generally have two reading related to blood sugar. the first reading will be a simple reading of your blood sugar at the time of the test . This is often referred to as fasting blood sugar as it is common to fast for several hours prior to having blood tested.
Readings below 100 mg/dl are considered "normal", with reading over 100/ml but under 125 mg/dl considered pre-diabetic and those over 125 mg/dl to be diabetic.
Note that simple fasting blood sugar readings can be easily manipulated with diet. As a result, life insurance carriers tend to take a closer look at Hb1Ac scores which measure your blood sugar over the previous three month period. The chart below from the NIH will give you a good idea of where you stand. Click the link for more information about life insurance with type II diabetes.
LFT's or liver function tests are laba that are routinely used by life insurers to test for elevated liver enzymes. Elevated enzymes are correlated with liver damage. This damage is often related to alcohol consumption or hepatitis C. the following list from the Mayo Clinic shows the normal score range for a variety of liver function test (including several not being monitored for the preferred Best Project).
These results are typical for adult men. Normal results vary from laboratory to laboratory and might be slightly different for women and children.
Life insurance lab results will typically include a kidney panel. Two of the most common tests performed, and values that will be used for the preferred best project are serum creatinine and BUN (blood urea nitrogin). the serum creatinine test measures Creatinine levels in the blood. A creatinine level of greater than 1.2 for women and greater than 1.4 for men may be an early sign that the kidneys are not working properly.
The BUN test measures the Urea nitrogen from the breakdown of protein in the foods you eat. A normal BUN level is between 7 and 20. As kidney function decreases, the BUN level rises.
A typical life insurance lab report will have dozens more values than the few discussed here. The labs discussed here were chosen for the preferred best project because they are the most frequently cited reasons for life insurance applications being "table rated" or declined. For a more comprehensive look at life insurance labs and specific conditions , please visit navigating pre-existing conditions.
Thank you for visiting the Preferred Best Project Blog and reading about the test values which will be used for the project. Please feel free to use the Life Insurance Help Desk as a resource and if you have any questions about the Preferred Best Project or life insurance in general please give us a call or drop an email.
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Jim Tobin is the owner of Life Insurance Help Desk, a Fairfield County, CT. life insurance agency. You can find him on LinkedIn and Facebook. Over the past 10 years, Jim has used his CFP-financial planning designation to help individuals with their life insurance needs. In addition to working with life insurance clients, Jim teaches ESL classes in his spare time. He resides with his beautiful wife Nicole and the 3 cats that rule their lives..
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