Genetic testing is an important piece of the health puzzle because it can tell you key information for why you may be not be feeling well, even when you are taking all of the right steps. If you are someone who is relatively healthy, genetic tests provides valuable information for prevention which otherwise you would not know.
Genetic tests look at everything from how much caffeine you should be consuming all the way to if you are predisposed for certain diseases. In functional medicine, one of the key pieces of information is a person’s ability to methylate. Methylation is important because its a process that happens every second and is involved in protecting your DNA, detoxing, inflammation and neurotransmitter production. What is crazy is 1 out of every 3 people have the genetic mutation causing them to be a poor methylator (MTHFR gene). What’s key to understand if you are a poor methlyator, your body has a tougher time detoxifying that those who can methylate properly. Additionally poor methylators have a hard time converting vitamins into a usable form in the liver. Ironically you need sufficient levels of vitamin B to keep methylation running smoothly.
To help with methylation, supplements can be taken that help the detoxification pathways including ALA (alpha lipoic acid) and NAC (N-acteyl cysteine). These are both anti oxidants which help remove neutralize free radicals (toxins that damage our bodies ie: chemicals etc). Also if you are a poor methylator, it’s important to take methylated supplements ie) traditional vitamin B supplement are in the chemical form cobalamine which your liver needs to convert to methylcobalamine to use so buy supplements that are already in the form methylcobalamine.
Currently, the follow genetics tests are available to consumers.
Sample Report from 23 and Me
The real beneficial information lies in requesting the raw data from 23/Me and then running it through a system that interprets the raw data.