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FAQ and Troubleshooting

Getting Started Video:

Printable getting started directions (using 23andMe data)

FAQs & Troubleshooting

How do I download my genetic raw data file?
Here are directions on how to download 23andMe data and AncestryDNA data.

Which file types are supported?
Currently, 23andMe and AncestryDNA .txt files work for the summary reports and all articles. MyHeritage, TellMeGen, SelfDecode, and Sequencing files also work.

None of the direct-to-consumer ancestry-type testing covers all of the variants on Genetic Lifehacks, but most of them cover 80% or more of the SNPs.

Can I use raw data from other companies?
Data files in a similar .csv format, such as from tellmeGen,, or 24genetics, should also work. You are welcome to contact us with specific questions.

Can I use the .zip file that I downloaded 23andMe or AncestryDNA on GeneticLifehacks?
Yes. You can choose either the .zip or the .txt file.

Which browsers are supported for the Summary Reports?
The interactive Summary Reports that integrate your genetic data work on all modern browsers — except for Internet Explorer. Unfortunately, the interactive features will not work in Internet Explorer, and you will need to use an alternative browser. (Chrome, Edge, Safari, Firefox, Brave, Opera)

Will the reports work in permanent incognito mode in Firefox?
No. The interactive reports that use your genetic data need access to your browser’s temporary files cache. It is not allowed in incognito mode on Chrome nor permanent private browsing mode in Firefox. 

What happens when I select my raw genetic data .txt file to use on the website?
Your genetic data stays on your computer. It is accessed only in your browser and not transferred over the internet. The data is read into a temp file in your browser, sorting out your genotypes and showing your information in the reports and the enhanced articles. Nothing transmits across the internet – these actions all happen privately on your computer. Please note that if you don’t clear your data after each use, it will remain in your browser’s temporary files cache until you do. Make sure you only use the member’s features on a trusted home computer. Don’t load your genetic data onto a public computer.

How can I switch raw data files?
On the Member’s Dashboard page, simply click on the “Clear Your Data’ button. Then click the “Choose File’ button and select the new raw data file.

What does it mean when my genotype is — in the articles and reports?
It means that the specific rs id is not contained in your raw data.
The SNPs section in each article indicates whether it is available on 23andMe versions 4 or 5, or AncestryDNA v.2 data. Most of the SNPs listed for 23andMe v4 are also found in the v3 data.

What do the different version numbers for 23andMe mean?
For 23andMe, the version of the raw data file indicates when that version was in service. When a new version is released, the company changes some gene sequences. Therefore, each version has a possibly different set of sequenced genes from the previous version.

23andMe v4 data ranges from 2014 to mid-2017, and V5 data started in mid-2017 and is the present version. Most of the rs ids marked as V4 will also be available in V3 data.

What does ‘typcial’ mean for an rd id number?
Typical means it is a more common allele that is found in a greater percentage of the population.
A mutation is a change in a gene that happens in less than 1% of the population. These are the rare changes. A polymorphism is a change that occurs in the gene for more than 1% of the population.

We all have lots of different polymorphisms — these are the small changes that make us all unique.

Why are some of the genotypes highlighted in the articles and reports?
Your genotype will be highlighted in yellow if you match with one effect allele or highlighted in orange if you match with two effect alleles. 

Where do I find the Summary Reports?
There are two locations on the website for easy access. For members, they are accessible from a button on the Member’s Dashboard or under the Member dropdown navigation.

Why does Genetic Lifehacks only support printing reports from the browser?
Most websites use third-party plugins to generate .pdfs, but this exposes your personal information to that unknown website.
When reports are generated and printed through the browser, no data is sent to Genetic Lifehacks. You retain control over the data. The trade-off is that the reports are not as slickly designed as other sites.

Can I add a Top 5 Topics Consultation report to my membership?
Absolutely. If you find that you want more help or guidance with understanding what could be important in your genetic data, you can order a Top 5 Topics consultation report at a discounted member’s price.

How are the member’s sections of articles beneficial?
The member’s sections give further details on lifehacks and research on supplements. It also includes a visual overview of your data that is easy to print. The member’s sections offer additional value for your membership since they contain detailed and referenced solutions you can experiment with or discuss with your doctor.

Why does Genetic Lifehacks use a membership model instead of just selling ads?
Advertising is an effective way to support websites and keep the content free. However, advertisers track users from one website to another to build detailed profiles of content interactions that can be sold. When it comes to private health issues and genetics, the last thing you want is to be tracked and profiled. The membership model keeps Genetic Lifehacks free of ads and financial bias. Our emphasis is on meeting the needs of members rather than selling ads.

Will my information be sold?
No and never. Genetic Lifehacks stores no genetic information from your use of this website, except in the case of ordering a consultation report or cheat sheet. The genetic information you provide will only be used for the consultation or reports and will not be shared, sold, used for research, or stored long-term. Genetic Lifehacks will never use your genetic data to sell you a product. Because genetic data is not stored, Genetic Lifehacks cannot sell your data as a company asset.

Is there a newsletter archive for members?
Yes. You can find the newsletter archive on the Member’s Dashboard under Membership Information and Help.

Do you have an unanswered question about using your 23andMe data?
We have compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions about 23andMe. Some examples include, ‘Which 23andMe kit should I buy?’ or ‘Can my 23andMe data tell me what to eat?’ You can find those answers and more about 23andMe here.

How do I cancel my monthly membership?
While we hate to see you go, it is easy to cancel your subscription. Just log in and go to the member’s account information page. Click on Subscription to manage or cancel your subscription.

How do I get support as a member?
If you have a problem, question, idea, or just want to say hi, please feel free to send a note using the member’s contact page.