Category «Diet / Gene Interaction»

Meat consumption, colon cancer, and your genes

The link between colon cancer and meat consumption has been trumpeted by vegetarians and heatedly refuted by paleo fanatics. My question, as usual, is: “What role does genetics play?” The World Health Organization includes processed meat on their list of probable carcinogens, based on several large epidemiological studies. According to the American Cancer Society, the lifetime …

Weight Loss: Optimizing your diet based on your genes

Diet gurus, talking heads on TV, government food pyramids, and your friend who lost 20 pounds… What do they all have in common?  They all know the perfect diet that will whip you into shape and make you feel good. If that diet doesn’t work for you?  Well, you must have been cheating. You didn’t …

Salt and High Blood pressure: Genes Make a Difference

Salt: Is it good for you? Or is it putting you at risk of high blood pressure? There is an interesting new book out by Dr. James DiNicolantonio called The Salt Fix that makes the argument that the experts got it wrong as far as the salt and blood pressure connection goes.  In contrast, the …

Why Allegra may not work as well for you: genetics of ABCB1 proteins

Ever wonder why a certain medication may work great for a friend and do nothing for you?  One reason could be your genes. Let’s take fexofenadine (Allegra) for example.  You have watery eyes and a drippy nose during spring allergy season and pop an Allegra.  There is a lot that goes on in your body …

Biohacks – Experiments and Optimizations Based on My Genetics

After three years of digging into genetics and learning all that I can about my genes, I wanted to get a little personal and share a few things that have worked for me. I would also love to hear back from all of you.  Leave a comment below or comment on the Facebook page if …

Intriguing Genes: Do you taste what I taste?

Ever wonder why some people don’t like Brussel sprouts or strong, dark coffee?  I love a good, dark roast, cup of coffee, and Brussel sprouts and cabbage taste great.  It turns out that I can’t taste the bitter compound in them, but the majority of people can. On the other hand, I have yet to find a …

Lactose Intolerance: The genetics of not producing lactase

Are you a milk drinker? Think that pouring a cold glass of milk sounds good? I had always thought it a bit strange that my husband likes to drink a glass of milk with dinner.  It just didn’t appeal to me – at all. I didn’t think ever think about lactose intolerance, though, because I still …

Intriguing Genes: Differences in how we smell things

Learning about genetics has given me a new perspective on so many different subjects.  For example, seeing first-hand how much of a difference the right vitamins and minerals make in a person’s mood due to changes in their neurotransmitter balance has made me much more understanding.  Cut me off in traffic?  Instead of just assuming you …

Digesting Carbohydrates: Amylase variants

Carbohydrate digestion begins in the mouth with an enzyme called amylase.  Saliva mixes with your food as you chew it, and the amylase in saliva begins breaking down carbohydrates into simple sugars.  Amylase is also produced by the pancreas and used for further breaking down carbs in the small intestines. Amylase isn’t the only enzyme …

Increased Inflammation and IL-17A Genetic Variants

In looking into the effects of emulsifiers on our gut, I came across quite a few genetic variants that are involved in increased inflammation and increased risk of inflammatory bowel diseases. IL-17A is a pro-inflammatory part of our immune system that, while necessary in times of injury or pathogenic infection, can cause problems if it …