The Health Check-Up – An Essential Element of Preventive Medicine

The Health Check-Up – An Essential Element of Preventive Medicine

Our health is our most valuable asset and plays a decisive role in determining our quality of life. Growing old and still being fit while doing so is a goal that every one of us has, but at the same time, it is one that many people only address once it is already too late. The keyword for this circumstance is “lifestyle diseases.” Have you ever heard of this term? It refers to non-communicable diseases, also called NCDs. Non-communicable diseases are the main item of health insurance in the US, meaning many people are affected by those diseases. But what are these non-communicable diseases, and how can you protect yourself? Regular check-ups allow you to take your health into your own hands – especially regarding the development of these so-called lifestyle diseases. In this article, CARE would like to show you how a health check gives you a chance for early detection of changes in your body and how this enables you to influence the potential course of diseases. With a health check-up, you can take timely measures to prevent disease development or take advantage of preventive treatment options or life changes to prevent something worse.

Blog Author Jris Health Coach at CARE
Jris Bernet

Health Coach EN

Published in General Health
8 min read · Mar 02, 2024

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What is a Health Check-Up?

A health check-up, or health check, is a comprehensive examination designed to assess a person's overall health to detect and avert potential risk factors or diseases at an early stage.

It is a preventive examination intended to anticipate the development of certain diseases, especially lifestyle diseases.

Lifestyle Diseases & Their Relevance For Health Check-Ups

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In Switzerland, about 80% of healthcare costs are attributable to so-called lifestyle diseases (noncommunicable diseases, NCDs). If indirect costs such as lost productivity are added, the economic costs amount to as much as 74.2 billion Swiss francs.

In 2017, 2.7 million people were affected by at least one of the five NCDs. This corresponds to almost one-third of the Swiss population. [2]

But what are those lifestyle diseases?

The five most common NCDs are type 2 diabetes, musculoskeletal diseases, kidney diseases (often alcohol-related), cardiovascular diseases (related to diet), and chronic respiratory diseases (smoking-related). [1]

These diseases, also commonly referred to as chronic diseases, are often a result of the lifestyle of the affected individuals.

Thanks to our ever-evolving medical care around the world, we are getting older and older. Still, because of our rather unhealthy lifestyles, diseases and the frequency of diseases are increasing. Among 50-year-olds, about 10% are impacted by an NCD, and among those over 75, already more than 40% suffer from an NCD. [3]

As a result, lifestyle diseases lead to at least four out of five deaths today – in Switzerland, about 55,000 deaths per year are attributable to NCDs. [4] Accordingly, regular health check-ups are of great importance for young people in terms of preventing these diseases. After all, the way we currently take care of our health has a significant influence on our health in old age.

For example, a Health Check-up at CARE is designed to alert you early to changes that could lead to an NCD in the longer term.

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Since you can also view your health data on your CARE app, you can also see the progress of your health data from check-up to check-up.

By detecting early biomarker levels that are not (or no longer) in the optimal range, we can provide you with personalized health advice and consult you on appropriate lifestyle strategies to minimize your risk of disease. [5]

Do Regular Health Check-Ups Really Make Sense?

At CARE, we recommend at least two health check-upd a year. In the case of pre-existing or already developing illnesses, you and your doctor will decide at what intervals it makes sense to have another health check.

In order to determine whether lifestyle changes you have implemented, such as eating less sugar, are positively changing your blood biomarkers, it is worthwhile, in most cases, to assess your health and blood again within a few months.

Changes in your body that may indicate the development of an NCD, such as high blood pressure, long-term blood glucose, high cholesterol, or visceral fat, can be easily monitored within three to six months if you make lifestyle changes to improve these levels.

This enables you to develop personalized health strategies and take appropriate measures to reduce your risk of disease.[6]

Another benefit of regular health check-ups is the inclusion of risk factors such as smoking and the use of alcohol and medications. We can also keep an eye on improvable eating habits that lead to obesity through health check-ups and target them.

At CARE, much emphasis is placed on taking your detailed medical history to get the most comprehensive picture of your potential health risks and optimize your well-being tailored to you.

And who should get tested regularly?

Who Should Have Regular Health Check-ups?

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Now that we know that a non-negligible proportion of people suffer from so-called lifestyle diseases as they age, every adult should get tested regularly and prioritize their health.

Even if you are still young and healthy, now is the time to prevent disease, adjust your lifestyle to age as well as possible, and stay fit and vital in advanced age.

At the same time, you can reduce the burden on the healthcare system by preventing illnesses. With a health check-up, you not only do something good for yourself, but also contribute to the collective well-being of society.

And what is examined during such a health check-up?

What Is Examined During a Health Check-up?

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Health check-ups, also referred to as full-body checks, include a series of tests and exams to assess your overall health. These include physical exams, blood tests, cancer screening tests (if risk factors are present), cardiovascular tests, and pulmonary function tests.

More specialized screenings, such as breast cancer or prostate screenings, are performed individually after consultation with your physician, often depending on family history. [7/8]

We would now like to briefly discuss the routine examinations of a health check-up in more detail.

Let’s Get Physical – The Physical Examination

A physical examination is a thorough examination of your body to detect abnormalities or any symptoms that indicate an illness. [9|

It’s In Your Blood – Blood Tests

Your blood tells us a lot about yourself – how you eat, if you drink, and much more. Blood tests refer to the analysis of blood samples to determine cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels, liver function, kidney function, and the presence of certain diseases.

At CARE, we test 50 biomarkers in your blood to determine your health status. [10]

A Lovely Zodiac Sign, Yet A Horrible Disease – Cancer Prevention

No one has anything good to say about cancer except it is astrology or beach-related.

Tests such as mammograms, pap smears, a colonoscopy, or prostate cancer screening are used to detect cancer early. [11] These tests are not usually done as part of a general check-up, nor are they done in our CARE facilities.

Cancer screenings are most often done in consultation with your primary care provider or a specialist based on genetic or other risk factors you possess or symptoms you have.

A Strong Heart – Cardiovascular Tests

Electrocardiograms, also called exercise ECG's, can help us identify cardiovascular disease and risk factors you might have when we perform a cardiovascular test. [12]

Just Breathe – Pulmonary Function Tests

Pulmonary function tests are used to assess your lung function and can indicate conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). They are an essential part of a health check-up. [13]

Other Tests

Depending on your risk factors or presenting symptoms, additional tests such as a vision screening (glaucoma screening), bone density measurements, and psychological evaluations may be performed additionally to traditional tests to determine your health status accurately. [14]

Overview Of The Most Important Tests

The following is an overview of some of the most important tests that can be performed in a health check-up.

Physical examination

  • Recommended age: from 30 years old
  • Purpose: assessment of general health

Blood tests

  • Recommended age: from 30 years old
  • Purpose: evaluation of blood levels and risk factors


  • Recommended age: from 40 years old
  • Purpose: breast cancer screening
  • For females


  • Recommended age: from 40 years old
  • Purpose: heart health assessment

Pulmonary function test

  • Recommended age: from 40 years old
  • Purpose: evaluation of lung function

Prostate cancer screening

  • Recommended age: from 50 years old
  • Purpose: prostate cancer screening
  • For males


  • Recommended age: from 50 years old
  • Purpose: colorectal cancer screening

Where Can You Get A Health Check-up Done?

Health checks can be performed in various healthcare settings, including doctors' offices, our innovative CARE practice, or hospitals.

CARE – Your Partner for Comprehensive & Preventative Health Care

CARE specializes in preventive medicine and offers you comprehensive, regular health check-ups performed with modern technical equipment and by experienced medical professionals to work with you to take your health to the next level.

Thanks to our CARE app, you receive your health data digitally and have an overview of it at all times. In the app, you can also see your personalized plans, strategies, and measures that you have discussed with your doctor or your health coach to optimize your health.

As a CARE Member, we support you in optimizing your personal lifestyle so that it enables you to live a vital and healthy life – especially as you grow older. Your Health Coach accompanies you on your health journey, and in our community, you will find a wide range of offers, from interesting scientific articles to sports activities or courses and workshops.

How You Grow Old Is Decided Now – Health Check-Ups As An Integral Part of Your Future Well-Being

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Especially in today's performance-orientated society, health check-ups are one of the most important tools for assessing your state of health, as well as for the early detection and prevention of diseases. They also enable you to take ownership of your health and optimize it before it is too late. Especially for the prevention of lifestyle diseases (NCDs), health check-ups are a valuable and important tool.

Many of the most common lifestyle diseases that now place a heavy burden on our health care system and affect many people can, to a large extent, be prevented or improved with reduced medical expense if early interventions are implemented.

Thanks to top-notch and modern medical care, our life expectancy is constantly increasing. But at the same time, NCDs are causing more people to become ill for longer in old age. To be able to age healthy and with dignity, it is worthwhile to recognize early on which health path you are on so that you can (still) decide for yourself in which direction you wish to continue.

Health check-ups are, therefore, an investment in your momentary and especially your future health. By implementing strategies and measures for a healthy lifestyle, your quality of life increases, which pays off, especially in old age.

You will thank yourself one day!

List of References

Blog Author Jris Health Coach at CARE

Jris Bernet

Health Coach EN at CARE Zurich

About the author

Jris is a health coach (nerd) and blog author at CARE. She has many years of experience as a coach for classic lifestyle conditions such as diabetes and women's health. She enjoys facilitating health challenges and courses. Fasting, keto, sleep, women's health and biohacking - Jris feels at home in these topics. When she's not working for CARE, she loves to listen to health podcasts and try out new (health) gadgets. Her credo: "It's never too late to start living a new lifestyle."