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Most readers and health enthusiasts want to know if they actually need a genetics test in order to be healthy. The answer: it depends on your definition of healthy.
What we know about fat loss and weight loss hasn't really changed over the years. We know that exercise and eating whole foods are two great pillars of a healthy lifestyle.
But in the past few years, people have decided to walk away from the basics of health and wellness (habits and nutritional choices) and seek something a bit more sexy in nature:
Because, in no way, shape, or form can it actually be your OWN fault that you can't lose weight, right?
Well, it turns out, aside from knowing that your great uncle was an Irish clog dancer or finding out if your pee will reek of asparagus, genetics aren't exactly the miracle we have been waiting for.
Because if you are genetically prone to have high blood sugar or Type II diabetes, but none of your lab markers show that, what really will you need to change given this new bit of information?
And there is also that little, tiny bit of science known as Epigenetics that shows how the environment and our stress play HUGE roles in changing our DNA genetic switches, literally turning on and off our propensity to acquire certain diseases.
And if that isn't enough to sway you off of your genetic high horse, there is always the little bit of research that shows just how powerful our minds are when it comes to mental vs. genes in the grand scheme of health.
Researchers at Stanford wanted to see just how powerful our minds were in comparison to the genetic hands the participants were dealt.
There is a gene called CREB1.
What the CREB1?
People with a high-risk CREB1 genotype, rather than a protective CREB1 genotype, typically have poorer aerobic capacity and struggle to benefit from physical exercises. So the researchers split participants into groups according to these genotypes.
But the focus wasn't on the gene itself, it was on how the mindset of the participants would affect their performance if they told them that they indeed had one or the other variant.
Turns out, regardless of their true genetic profiles, people who were told they had high-risk genotypes believed they were more vulnerable to poor exercise capacity than people who were told they had protective genotypes. They also expressed more worry and less control over their physical health.
So, is genetic testing a total waste?
No, it isn't. But it surely is not a death sentence or a badge of immunity like some regard it to be.
It turns out, that a handful of genetic variants can be super helpful regarding your heart health as it pertains to how your body produces and metabolizes cholesterol and how well you methylate.
And while I could dive deep into this topic, I will only keep this brief.
When looking into your heart health, you want to pay particular attention to the following two genes:
Super important indicator of methylation.
The main thing you want to view, along side your particular variant, is your Homocysteine level.
The higher your serum levels of homocysteine, usually the more damage you are doing to the inner lining of your arteries.
2. ApoE status:
The APOE gene matters, basically, because of the disease risks involved. These can include:
- Heart Disease
2 alleles3 alleles4 alleles
What does this mean is regards to health?
1. Avoid consuming high quantities of fats
2. Mitigate risk of Alzheimer's
3. Follow a Nutritional Guide
Looking for a more narrowed-down solution?
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