GENETIC TESTING SHOWS YOU PREDISPOSITION, NOT DESTINY.
Many people are using services to test their DNA and there are a few services that help to interpret the raw data. The problem is that many of them aren't comprehensive enough to give a broad picture, or else practitioners don't know where to go with that information.
I combine each client's genetic testing results with their lifestyle, diet, level of exposure to toxins and stress, a health history symptom survey and any lab testing the client may want or have already gotten. This gives a much fuller picture to what is going on within the body and therefore gives me a better indication of which genes may have actually become expressed.
I analyze genetic results with software that analyzes over 250 genetic variants (as of writing this). These variants are associated with aspects of health like inflammation, neurotransmitter and hormonal balance, fatty acid metabolism, methylation ability, detoxification ability, and even gut health function.
Despite all humans being 99.9% identical in their genetic makeup (National Human Genome Research Institute, 2014), we are all vastly individual beings!
Let's do a quick Genetics 101 review/overview:
DNA, genes, and chromosomes are like a blueprint of life. They are the plans that tell the body how to make things.
Your DNA controls virtually everything about you - your height, eye color, etc. However, your DNA also controls how you make nutrients that are critical for healthy functioning. It also controls how effectively you make antioxidants needed to neutralize damaging free radicals and clear toxic substances from the body.
What Is DNA?
Put simply, DNA is the blueprint for making proteins. These proteins can be enzymes, structural building blocks, neurotransmitters, hormones, etc.
If you want a little more detail, DNA contains the instructions an organism needs to live, develop and reproduce. DNA is a double-stranded molecule composed of sugar, phosphate, and 4 different nitrogenous bases – adenine, thymine, cytosine, and guanine. These bases are assembled in pairs (called “base pairs”, where adenine pairs with thymine and cytosine pairs with guanine) and spell out the language known as genetic code. The number and the order of these bases determine what makes you unique.
What are Genes, Alleles, and Chromosomes?
Strands of DNA code are what make genes. Genes are recipes for making specific proteins, which are passed down to offspring. These proteins make enzymes, antibodies and other things that contribute to bodily structure and functioning.
Different regions of DNA control specific traits. These long strands of DNA containing our genes are organized into pieces called chromosomes. Chromosomes are found in the nucleus of every cell.
In other words, imagine the chromosome is the bookshelf, the DNA are the books, and the genes are the pages of words (which are letters arranged in a way to create meaning).
We are born with our particular sequence of DNA, but the way it is expressed can change. This is called epigenetics. It means that just because you "have the breast cancer gene" (which actually means that you have the variant that is correlated with an increased risk), doesn't mean you are doomed to get it. Actually, 80-90% of genetic expression is determined by your diet and lifestyle. No kidding.