Nutrients: Foods & Vitamins

Your genes interact with the foods you eat to shape your health!

Knowing which specific nutrients you may ‘genetically’ need more of can be the key to both solving  health issues and optimizing wellness.  

This section includes information on:

  1. Vitamins & Your Genes
  2. Food Sensitivities
  3. Methylation Cycle Variants

Vitamins & Your Genes

SIRTfoods diet: Sirtuins and turning on your skinny genes

The SIRTfoods diet is gaining popularity once again due to the endorsement from a few popular celebrities. The diet plan is based on the 2016 book The SIRTfood Diet, which proposes weight loss occurs by activating sirtuins. Find out what exactly a sirtuin does, the genetic variants in the SIRT genes, and whether this weight loss concept stands up to the research.

Vitamin C: Do you need more?

Like most nutrients, our genes play a role in how vitamin C is absorbed, transported, and used by the body. This can influence your risk for certain diseases, and it can make a difference in the minimum amount of vitamin C you need to consume each day.

genetics and estrogen metabolism

Folate & MTHFR

The MTHFR gene codes for a key enzyme in the folate cycle. MTHFR variants can decrease the conversion to methyl folate.

Vitamin D

Your vitamin D levels are impacted by sun exposure - and your genes. Learn more about how vitamin D is made in the body and how your genetic variants impact your levels (Member's article)

Genetic Variants that Increase Your Need for Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 is an important co-factor in hundreds of different enzymatic reactions. Low levels of B6 are linked to an increased risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer. B6 is also important for reducing oxidative stress and inflammation.

Biotin Deficiency

Biotin, also known as vitamin B7 or vitamin H, is a cofactor which aids in the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Biotin deficiency due to diet is pretty rare, but there are genetic variants that can increase your risk for biotin deficiency or insufficiency.

Vitamin A

Genetics plays a huge role in how well you convert the carotenes into retinol. Some people are great at converting beta-carotene in their diet into the retinol form. Others carry genetic variants that significantly impair that conversion.

Vitamin B12

There are several genes that can influence your absorption, transport, and need for vitamin B12. Some people need higher amounts of B12, and some people thrive on different forms of B12. Take a look at your genetic data to see if you should up your intake of B12. (Member's article)


An essential nutrient, your need for choline from foods is greatly influenced by your genes. Find out whether you should be adding more choline into your diet.


Also known as vitamin B1, thiamine is essential for energy production and brain function. Learn how your genes influence your need for thiamine. (Member's article)

Food Sensitivities & Genetics

BChE: Nightshade sensitivity, anesthetics

Genetic variants of the BChE gene decrease this enzyme’s activity. This can lead to various and seemingly unconnected consequences… such as an increased risk for Parkinson’s or a food sensitivity to nightshade vegetables such as potatoes, tomatoes, and eggplant.

Hunter-Gatherer vs. Farmer

Our ancient ancestors lived much differently than we do today. They were hunter-gatherers, living off of fish, meat, and plant foods that they gathered. A huge shift took place when those hunter-gatherers began farming, growing grains and storing them so that there would be food available all year. Learn if you carry the hunter- gatherer or farmer gene variant.

histamine intolerance genetics

Histamine Intolerance

Chronic headaches, sinus drainage, itchy hives, problems staying asleep, and heartburn -- all of these symptoms can be caused by the body not breaking down histamine very well. Your genetic variants could be causing you to be more sensitive to foods high in histamine. Check your genetic data to see if this could be at the root of your symptoms.

Mushroom intolerance genes

Mushroom Intolerance

Mushrooms contain a healthy antioxidant called ergothioneine. But for people with a OCTN1 genetic variant, this antioxidant can be too much of a good thing, leading to intestinal problems. Check your genetic data to see if you carry this mushroom intolerance variant.

Drinking Milk

Whether or not you produce the dairy digesting enzyme lactase as an adult is dependent on a common genetic variant. Discover whether you are genetically lactose intolerant - and how to hack this with the right probiotics.

Coffee and Your Genes

Studies show some great benefits for disease prevention and cognitive function in people who drink coffee. But your genes make a difference in both whether you will benefit from coffee and how your body reacts to caffeine. Check your genes and decide how you much coffee you should be drinking. (Member's article)

Oxalates, Kidney Stones, and Joint Pain

A diet high in oxalate rich foods can cause some people to have kidney stones and joint pain. Learn which genetic variants you carry. (Member's article)

Digesting Carbohydrates: Amylase Variants

Carbohydrate digestion starts in the mouth with an enzyme called amylase. Some people are carb digesting champs, and others may not produce as much amylase.

Caffeine + Carbs

For some people, stacking caffeine with carbohydrates will raise their blood glucose levels more than just carbs alone. Learn whether you carry this genetic combo and what to do about it. (Member's article)

Fish for DHA & EPA

We all vary in how well we convert the plant-based omega-3 oils into the DHA and EPA that our body needs. Some people are really poor at this conversion and thus should either eat more fish or consider taking a DHA / EPA supplement.

Tyramine intolerance

Foods high in tyramine can cause a hypertensive crisis for people on MAOA inhibitors - and possibly for people who genetically have impaired tyramine metabolism. Learn more about the foods high in this biogenic amine and check to see if you carry the genetic variants that put you at risk. (Member's Article)

Alcohol Metabolism

Genes play a big role in how quickly you break down alcohol and how fast you eliminate acetaldehyde from your system. Check to see whether you have typical 'drinking genes'. (Member's article)

Mediterranean Diet

A study looked at the interaction between a Mediterranean diet, genetics, and metabolic syndrome. Find out if a Mediterranean diet would work well for you. (Member's article)

TRPV1: Spicy Foods

The TRPV1 receptor is activated by capsaicin in spicy foods. But there is a lot more to this story... find out how this receptor impacts diabetes, metabolic function, and more.

Methylation Cycle Variants (SNPs)

Folic Acid and MTHFR

Should you take folic acid if you carry the MTHFR variants? It turns out that the bigger picture is genetic variants in DFHR, which is upstream of the MTHFR enzyme in the folate pathway. Check your DHFR variants and learn how unmetabolized folic acid may be affecting you. (Member's article)

genetics and estrogen metabolism

Folate & MTHFR

The MTHFR gene codes for a key enzyme in the folate cycle. MTHFR variants can decrease the conversion to methyl folate.

Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)

Riboflavin (vitamin B2) is a water-soluble vitamin that is a cofactor for many enzymes in the body. It is vitally important for energy production in the mitochondria and is also a key component of your body’s detoxification system. Some people may need more riboflavin due to MTHFR or FMO3 genetic variants. (Member's article)

CBS variants and low sulfur

This article digs into the high quality research on the common CBS genetic variants to determine if there is any evidence suggesting everyone should be on a low-sulfur diet. Read through the research and check your genetic data.