Genetics and genomics are fascinating fields. For many of us they may seem like, at best, an intriguing look into our ancestry, and, at worst, a blueprint of our doom. The latest in genetic and genomic testing, however, focusses on using the information in your DNA to help you make better choices and live a healthier, happier, more active life. Below, some need to know facts about what genetic and genomic testing and what it can do for you!
Genetics vs. Genomics
In broad terms, genetics refers to the study of a specific gene, while genomics refers to a larger set of genes. Genomic testing studies variations in sections of genetic material, to determine things like how a certain cancer is likely to develop, treatments a patient might respond best to, etc, while genetic testing can help pinpoint whether you have a certain gene that makes you more likely to develop a cancer, be resistant to certain treatments, etc. The two terms are often used interchangeably in public discourse.
Weight Loss and Genetic Testing
Genetic testing can identify how your body processes insulin, which in turn can key nutritionists in on what kind of diet will work best for your body. People who are more insulin resistant, for example, tend to lose more weight on low carb diets, while people who are more sensitive to insulin may do better on low-fat diets.
Athletes and ACTN3
In the past several years, there’s been much interest in the ACTN3 gene especially, which has been linked to athletic performance–specifically, whether an individual is predisposed to be better at endurance based sports or those requiring a quick jolt of energy. Genomic testing for athletes looks at this gene and others to discover what your body is wired to excel at and respond best to, in terms of training, diet, and type of sport. It can also help better assess what your body needs to recover from an intense workout.
Heart Attacks, High Cholesterol, High Blood Pressure, and Diabetes
Heart attacks, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes are some of the most common causes of death among Americans. Genomic testing seeks to identify which conditions you are most susceptible to, and allows medical professionals to prescribe lifestyle changes, diets, and even medications tailored to your genetics.
It’s Accessible–Even to You!
Genomic testing is easier, more accurate, and more accessible to the public than ever before! Whether you are struggling to lose weight, want to improve your athletic performance, or just want to live a longer, healthier life, we recommend reaching out to your nearest testing center today. Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Institute is proud to offer genetic testing in house. Contact our office to request an appointment.