DNA and Health: The Importance of DNA Testing For Your Health

On April 25th, in the United States, it is National DNA Day. DNA is something you may or may not know plays a huge part in what we do here at Functional Medicine Associates.

National DNA Day commemorates the day in 1953 when James Watson, Francis Crick, Maurice Wilkins, Rosalind Franklin announced their discovery of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in the science journal, Nature.

Fast forward to 1990, The Human Genome Project took place. Around 2000 scientists from around the world came together to begin mapping the nucleotides in human DNA.

This mapping of the human genome has dramatically transformed medicine and research, and in turn our health.

What Is The Link Between DNA and Health? 

Genes have a profound influence, both good and bad, on health outcomes. We all have inherited genetic variations that increase or decrease our susceptibility to various health conditions. Having a DNA health test gives you the knowledge of your gene variants and allows you to act upon that information. By doing this, you can reduce these gene influences that promote illness and disease by choosing the lifestyle choices that balance off their risk. It could be a change in the diet, a particular supplement or a specific exercise regime. 

What Is a DNA Health Test?

A DNA health test involves providing a sample of your DNA which is sent to a lab for analysis. Using the extensive report, we can predict your risk of developing certain diseases based on what gene variants are present in your code. The good news is, just because we see some genetic predispositions to disease it doesn't mean that these genes are going to play out and result in disease. We combine your results with your current and past lifestyle, and provide you with a detailed analysis on what may be impacting your health. We then help you to make real changes based on your report. In other words, we provide you with a bespoke and individualised health assessment and plan based on your real genetic data. With your test results and informed lifestyle plan, you have a say in how your life plays out.

“Having the DNA Health test was an eye opener for me. My genetics showed that I am predisposed to certain behaviours and it's not something that I have control over. That knowledge seemed to shift my thinking almost overnight! This test enabled me to look at things in a different way, knowing my genes play a part has removed the guilt which could weigh heavy at times. The knock-on effect has been that I've found it easier to make better choices, and I am able to more readily accept that it's ok to have a bad day, because everyone does from time to time. This test has also shown the areas where I may be more at risk in the future, and so will help me to minimise or reduce those risks through changes to diet, or adding in supplements, etc. This test has given me an explanation of why some things are subconsciously affecting my behaviour, and taking this forward feels like a huge release for me. I wish I'd taken this sooner!” 
- Helen

Interested in finding out more?

Head over to our DNA Health Testing page here.

Listen to our podcast episode 'A Beginners Guide to DNA Health Testing' with genetics expert Helen Gauche here.

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