Nutrigenomics is a multidisciplinary science, which studies how:
• Our food interacts with our genes
• Our genes determine our response to our food or certain chemicals found in our food
Nutrigenomics helps us design the right diet and exercise regimens to bring about long-lasting health and wellness. It is a science, which possesses the potential to prevent, alleviate, or even treat certain chronic diseases by making simple and slight changes to what we eat.
The complete mapping of the human genome, first announced in 2003, has been one of the greatest technological accomplishments of the past 100 years. This has given scientists a better understanding of the mechanisms pertaining to health issues at a molecular level, changing clinical diagnosis and health management.
In the recent years, Genome Project has revealed that individuals show variable responses to a diet. One of the main reasons behind this is the variations in DNA that have a profound effect on the nutritional requirements, metabolic efficiency, and an individual’s ability to lose and maintain weight.
DNA based analysis provides individuals with a great opportunity to apply gene-based results to their daily lifestyle. Moreover, they can manage various health and weight issues through planning of meals and exercise based on genetic differences in metabolism under expert guidance.
Your genes are the blueprint of your body. Knowing your DNA and your genes is the most efficient way of knowing oneself. From approximately 25,000 identified human genes that produce proteins to control our biological processes, we have identified a handful of genes associated with:
• Weight loss resistance
• Body mass index (BMI)
• Muscle mass
• Body fat
All of these parameters meet the stringent criteria for utility in genetic screen tests.
The following five points clearly summarize the key aspects of Nutrigenomics as a science:
1. Common dietary chemicals act on the human genome, either directly or indirectly, to alter gene expression or structure.
2. Under certain circumstances and in some individuals, diet can be a serious risk factor for a number of diseases.
3. Some diet-regulated genes and their normal/common variants are likely to play a role in the onset, incidence, progression, and/or severity of chronic diseases.
4. The degree to which diet influences the balance between healthy and disease states may depend on an individual’s genetic makeup.
5. Dietary intervention based on knowledge of nutritional requirement, nutritional status, and genotype (individualized nutrition) can be used to prevent, mitigate, or cure chronic disease.
From the above it is quite clear that what we eat determines how our body will respond to it. Further, food can be a causative agent for the onset of many diseases and disorders through a variety of ways. Nutrigenomics holds a good proposition of ‘personalised health’. We have convincing scientific proof that no two human beings will react to a food (or a chemical contained in it) in a similar manner. We can use this science and its ever-expanding library of research to better understand your genetic make-up vis-à-vis your diet and its effect on your health.
Who should go for a Gene Test?
Anyone who is oriented towards prevention of health issues NOW, rather than efforts to manage health at later stage can go for a gene test.
We have an array of solutions to offer, which will help you manage health as well as weight-related issues. For those looking out for weight-related issues, here are some relevant points:
Gene-based weight management plans provide insights into:
• Responsiveness to diet and exercise interventions
• Individual energy adaptation needs
• Predisposition to slow and rapid weight gain
• Optimal macronutrient distribution for effective weight loss
• Optimal exercise intensity for weight loss
• The degree to which we react to the amount and type of fat in our body
The human body is made up of trillions of tiny, microscopic living entities called cells. These cells are the embodiment of the body as a whole. The activities that our body performs are actually the sum total of all the activities performed by our individual cells. Thus, even if a single cell is removed from our body and is given the right conditions, say, in a laboratory, it is capable of independent growth and of performing all the functions of life such as growth, nutrition, excretion, and reproduction.
The cell harbours various intracellular organelles, pretty much similar to our body organs and systems. The activities of a cell are divided among these organelles. An organelle called the nucleus is the chief among them all because it controls the activities of all other organelles and the cell as a whole. It does so due to the presence of a long thread-like molecule called DNA (De-oxy Ribo Nucleic Acid) within it. Although the name might not sound fascinating, the DNA is by far the most enthralling and mesmerizing molecule in creation. It is called the ‘Master Molecule of Life.’ A DNA has on its extremely long structure all the information needed for performing various life processes. Everything that is ever needed to run a cell and a body as a whole is written on the DNA in a coded language.
DNA can be compared with an instruction manual of life. Just as a manual might have separate chapters or sections to help understand various aspects of a machine, the DNA has discrete segments, each of which has instructions for a particular activity. These segments are called ‘genes’. Scientists believe that human DNA might have as many as 20,000 genes, which together run the entire show. The information that is written on the genes is read by an elaborate process inside the cell and this information is used to manufacture proteins. Proteins are the functional and structural units of cells and they are the ones who will get the work done as per information written on the genes.
Scientists have found out that certain chemicals in the food that we consume have the ability to attach to certain genes inside our cells and thus bring about modifications in the way these genes work. They may switch the genes ‘ON’ or ‘OFF’ or have an impact on the final outcome of their activities – protein synthesis. Researchers have found that certain foods can make us susceptible to certain diseases and disorders. These may occur not directly due to the foods, but because we have certain genes with which these foods interact. Research has proved that dietary chemicals have the ability to alter gene expression. When the information on a gene is read and protein is made using the information, it is called a gene expression.
2017 © Anjali Mukherjee Health Total Pvt. Ltd.