Lifestyle and your DNA
When we think of DNA and genetic science, a few things immediately spring to mind: disease modification and treatment, forensic problem-solving, and relationship testing—just to name a few. Sometime in the future, genetic science is going to impact the way we treat illnesses at a very granular level. As molecular biologist John Hesketh from the University of Newcastle states, “It would be preferable to tailor treatment to the individual, rather than to a group or just the population generally.” While personalised medicine is a huge challenge, and one we will undoubtedly someday conquer, scientists are already looking at genetic science to help prevent disease. We each have some control over our long-term health and it seems there is a growing movement to embrace a healthier lifestyle. This is clear to see in the huge fall in the numbers of smokers and the reduction in red-meat consumption in the UK. Is it any wonder, then, that lifestyle DNA tests are becoming popular?
Lifestyle DNA Tests: Wave of the Future?
This interest in personal health is great because, while we are living longer, those extra years are not always enjoyed in good health. To help optimise quality of life, scientists are now looking at the way lifestyle choices—based on DNA—can improve our health.
NHS Genetics Education writes: “In the future…we may be able to recommend a diet rich in foods that contain a particular nutrient that acts by ‘switching off’ a gene that contributes to the development of specific chronic diseases, such as high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s disease …”
Lifestyle DNA Tests: The Future is Now
This interest in the connection between DNA and health has led to significant investment from commercial labs that are now able to look at how we—as unique individuals—are able to metabolise certain foods and absorb specific nutrients. There is also a DNA test that can identify how we should exercise.
Instead of following the latest fad diet or exercise regime, lifestyle DNA tests can give you a clear direction to follow for a lifetime. They can tell you what foods to eat and which to avoid. They can tell you if you are good at processing alcohol and caffeine. They can tell you if you should jog slowly or do high impact aerobics exercise.
Having a test like this may seem extreme, but if you are going to watch your weight, eat healthily and exercise wouldn’t you want to ensure that your efforts will provide you with the best outcome possible rather than the one-size-fits-all approach?
There are already a number of personalised tests available that are being well received. And what does the future hold? It may be that one day that doing lifestyle DNA tests will just be a matter of course!
If you need additional information about a DNA test or want to order, contact our experienced customer-service team on 020 3301 7346.