You’re one-of-a-kind. Your diet and lifestyle should be too! Learn what genetic nutrition testing is, how testing can help you optimize your health, what your nutrition DNA test results can tell you (and what it can’t), and how to get started today!
Your health is too vital for a one-size-fits-all approach!
Many healthcare providers, along with myself, believe that personalization is the future of healthcare. We are all unique, yet healthcare has provided a one-size-fits-all approach that doesn’t fit anyone. It fails to provide the long-term wellness and lifestyle choices that each individual needs specifically for their overall health. Genetic nutrition testing provides you with a personalized blueprint for optimal health and wellness.
What is Genetic Nutrition Testing?
Nutritional genomics, also known as genetic nutrition testing, is the study of how nutrients and genes interact. For example, it looks at how the foods we eat can change our gene expression (how our genes work) and how our genes can determine our nutritional needs.
This type of testing can help us understand which nutrients we need for optimal health and why some people may be more susceptible to certain diseases. For example, if you have a gene that puts you at risk for heart disease, knowing this information could motivate you to make dietary changes to reduce your risk of developing the disease.
On the flip side, it’s equally important to understand that genetic nutrition testing isn’t.
Genetic testing can NOT diagnose you. Just because you have the genetic markers for a particular disease does NOT mean you have that disease or even that you will get it one day. Please keep this in mind as you consider genetic nutrition testing.
Personally speaking, I’m a fan of genetic nutrition testing because it helps me understand my risk factors for developing specific diseases and chronic health conditions- critical to me because I am adopted and don’t know my family medical history. And, knowing my body does better eating certain foods and getting more exercise motivates me to work towards optimal health.
Since having that blueprint is the key to optimal health and wellness, here are five reasons genetic nutrition testing can help YOU reach your health goals.
5 Ways Genetic Nutrition Testing Can Help You Reach Your Health Goals
1. Clarity into Who You Are
Knowing your genetic code, and specifically what genetic variations you have, can help us better understand how your body responds to environmental factors, certain foods you eat, certain activities you do, and more. It can give us better clarity about how your body handles inflammation or whether weight loss will be a challenge for you.
2. A Focus on Root Causes of Chronic Conditions
Having clarity into how your body functions is the first step, and with that clarity, we can create a more focused approach to your healthcare. For example, suppose your genetic variation tells us that your cells have a hard time getting rid of toxins. In that case, you can make food and lifestyle choices to minimize toxins in your body. We can also treat illness and disease at the root of the issue instead of treating downstream symptoms.
3. Better Food Choices
One of the most impactful health changes you can make is changing “what” and “how” you eat. But the age-old question has been, “what diet is best for me?” The best healthy diet is the one that aligns with your genetics. Insights into your genetics can determine what dietary advice you should follow. For example, do you need higher amounts of specific vitamins? Should you cut out foods that cause inflammation? Or add foods that support detoxification? Should you reduce your fat intake or cut down on your caffeine intake? A DNA nutrition test provides excellent insight into the best diet for YOU.
4. More Targeted Screening
In addition to understanding how your systems work best and how to tailor lifestyle and food choices to your unique body, genetics can also help us better understand the root causes of illness. By doing so, we can choose better options for more targeted screening and testing. Instead of generic or blanket testing that may leave us searching for how to help you, genetics can help us pinpoint exactly where to look — like having a map to where we need to go, instead of just guessing.
5. More Precise Supplements
Similarly, knowing your genetic makeup can help us find the right supplements for your genes. For example, if we know that your genes store iron too well, we can recommend the proper intervention instead of a trial-and-error process that would happen without those genetic insights. So, once again, knowing a person’s genetic makeup and how their genes affect their systems, metabolism, cardiovascular health, and more allows us to make more personalized and customized supplement recommendations for you. And, in addition, we can remove unnecessary supplements as well.
Genetic Nutrition Testing FAQ
It’s often assumed that we can’t change our genes — so why even try? The truth is that while we can’t change our DNA code, our gene expression is a bit of a different story. Our genes express themselves in different ways and affect how we interact with the world around us, but the world around us also affects how our genes express themselves. That means that lifestyle and food choices can influence how our genes work. Our genes aren’t set in stone, and there’s a lot we can do to help them impact our health.
Genetic testing has gained a lot of popularity in the past decade through ancestry companies that can test your DNA and track your family’s history. But genetic testing can be used for a lot more than determining your ancestry. For example, genetic testing can tell you how your body functions, right down to the cellular level, and can help you understand how your body processes nutrients, how it metabolizes caffeine, how well it handles inflammation, and much more.
It’s a common concern to worry about whose hands your genetic test will fall into and if it’ll be used for malicious purposes. But HIPAA laws prevent practitioners from sharing information about a patient’s genetic test, and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, or GINA, protects individuals from being discriminated against for what’s in that test. That means that your employer can’t make hiring or firing decisions, nor can your health insurance company restrict coverage based on a genetic test.
Our knowledge of all areas of science is constantly evolving. The study of genetics has undoubtedly come a long way since DNA was first studied in the 1950s. Like any other science, our knowledge around genes, their expression, and how they impact health and functionality increases each day. And like with any other science, we practice with what we have and expand our practice as our knowledge deepens.
Like the question above, a genetic test’s results don’t just stand alone. We can use them to make patient care much more personalized, help determine better foods to eat, influence better lifestyle choices, lead to more targeted screening and testing, point the way towards the best supplements, and more. So genetic testing isn’t something to take in isolation but rather be incorporated into the portfolio of healthcare approaches.
Genetic testing can certainly screen for specific genetic variants to determine if someone might be more predisposed to a disease — and many people use genetic testing in just that way. But like we’ve already seen, genetic nutrition testing offers much more, including informing lifestyle and food choices to address root causes of illness and disease before they even start. So it’s essential to understand which genetic tests focus on food choices and lifestyle changes — what we call nutrigenetic tests — and medical genetic tests that look for rare genetic variants that may by themselves cause disease.
My top pick for genetic nutrition testing
I spent a lot of time reviewing different genetic nutrition testing options. Happily, I settled upon 3X4 Genetics because of their high quality, action-oriented reports and focus on “systems” and gene interactions vs. isolating single genes.
What’s included in the 3×4 Blueprint?
Your 3X4 Genetics Blueprint gives you actionable insights into:
- Heart Disease Find out how your genes support your heart health and how you can support your cardiovascular system. What different foods should you eat for optimal fatty acids? Are you salt-sensitive? What gene variants impact your blood pressure
- Weight Loss Your genes have a significant role in how your body manages weight; find out insights to help you manage your weight intelligently.
- Hormones Find out how well your hormones work and get insights into whether you should avoid taking hormones, such as the contraceptive pill or testosterone.
- Immunity How well your genes work to fight off viruses, knowing how healthy your immune system is, and what you can do to build a robust immune system are essential to know.
- Exercise Find out what type of physical activity works best for you, how to get fit, and avoid injury by training smarter-not necessarily harder.
- Brain health Learn what you can do to optimize cognition as you get older.
- Optimal Diet Find out how well you process specific nutrients such as folic acid, vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin D, caffeine, and many more. Are you at risk of developing celiac disease if you eat gluten?
- Detoxification & much more
How does the 3X4 genetics test work?
- GET YOUR HOME DNA TEST. Once you sign up, your test kit is mailed directly to your home.
- DO A QUICK SWAB. After you receive your test kit, you’ll collect your saliva sample (a 60-second cheek swab), activate your test kit, and mail it back to the lab for analysis.
- RELAX & WAIT. You’ll receive a copy of your personalized 3×4 Genetics Blueprint in ~ 3-4 weeks.
- PUT YOUR PLAN INTO ACTION. Once I receive your personalized DNA report, we will schedule a video or phone consultation to review your results and create an action plan, including nutrition recommendations, lifestyle suggestions, and targeted supplement recommendations.
- BONUS! You also get full access to my customizable meal planner based on your optimal diet plus 20% off professional-grade supplements if recommended.