Forget BMI, What’s Your ACE Score?

School was not my favorite place to be. And tests were never a fun thing unless it was an essay test on Pride & Prejudice, AMIRITE?! Just me, eh?

Oh, Lydia.

Well, I recently took another test called the ACE Quiz. ACE stands for Adverse Childhood Experiences, and I scored really high an 8/10. Only, this is one of those tests where you don’t want a high score. At all. A high score on this test can indicate the likelihood of allllll kinds of negative health problems, like COPD and lung cancer, to name a few.

If you aren’t familiar with the ACE Quiz, let me summarize for you. The ACE Quiz (it’s more of a questionnaire) consisted of ten questions about your experiences with traumatic childhood experiences. Your score can indicate your propensity to develop a plethora of adverse health outcomes. To learn more, watch this TED Talk from Dr Nadine Burke Harris. Basically, the study determined that childhood trauma influences your lifelong mental and physical health.

Yeah, of course, it does. I knew that before I took the quiz. What I didn’t know is that I’m three times more at risk for heart disease and lung cancer than someone with an ACE score of zero. It affects mental health, too. People with high scores are TWELVE TIMES more at risk of suicide, and their life expectancy is shortened by twenty years.

What I want you to take away from this post is to take the ACE Quiz for the sake of your kids, and try to take it as if you were your kid, too. I like this one NPR shared because the questions were worded clearly. See if there are things in their environment that you can change for the healthier. Coming from divorced parents gets you one point on the test, so basically, almost everyone in America can claim that adverse childhood experience. Yay us.

I will continue to keep on doing what I’m doing in terms of fitness and nutrition, despite learning this new information. What I can do is try to reverse or mitigate the risks by being as healthy as possible, while still balancing the enjoyment of what makes life fun. Including donuts sometimes.

I also want you to take away how very proud I am of myself for my gif choices in this post.

You’ve heard my thoughts! Would love to hear yours here.