Genetic Testing – The Future Of Modern Medicine is Here

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Recent science shows that food is not only calories…it is information to our genes.    We’ve always known you are what you eat….but we now know that food literally turns on and off gene expression.  We are born with a certain set of DNA…but your DNA is not your destiny.  It has been said for years that 1/3 of your risk for disease is your genes…but 2/3’s is what you do with your genes.  Do you get enough sleep?  Eat whole foods or fast foods?  Are you exposed to chemicals on a regular basis?  Carry your cell phone 24/7?  Do you get any exercise?  Smoke?  You get the point.  We all make choices on a daily basis and over time they add up and either protect us or become chronic disease.

Nutrigenomics is the study of food and its effects on genes.   This area of research explains why some people can eat a high fat diet and have no problem with their cholesterol levels while others experience the exact opposite response.  Genetically, we are like snowflakes and only identical twins have the exact same DNA.

What do we know in this field so far?  Lots!  With more to come.  Researchers have identified compounds found in broccoli that switch on a specific gene that helps the body detoxify some of the harmful chemicals we’re sometimes exposed to.  But, because this gene is missing in about 20% of the population, some people won’t benefit from the detoxifying properties of broccoli, although they probably still benefit from its antioxidant effects.

Individuals who had a ‘slow’ version of the gene that breaks down caffeine in the liver have an increased risk of a heart attack when increasing consumption of caffeinated coffee.  However, those who have the ‘fast’ version of the gene, have a lower risk of heart attacks with moderate intakes of caffeinated coffee (1-3 cups per day).

Green tea is known to have several beneficial phytochemicals, but a number of studies are now showing that some people break down these compounds more slowly and probably don’t need to consume as much to get the same benefits.

These kinds of studies mean we no longer have to play a guessing game.  Genetic testing is becoming more commonplace and my prediction is that in the next 5-10 years, it will be commonplace before your doctor prescribes a drug, because we all metabolize so differently.

The future is individualized, customized medicine.  I am working hard in my practice to already put this in place.  Many genetic tests are now available and can help you sort through what type of exercise is best for you, risks for bone loss, genetic variants that affect detoxification and hormone metabolism, how well you are aging, risk of Celiac disease and more.

It’s an exciting time for sure!  Stay tuned for more on this throughout the year!

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 About Tracy Konoske, MS, RDN

meet_tracyTracy Konoske is an eclectic clinician and uses a blend of natural, integrative, functional, and personalized medicine to help her patients feel their best.  Tracy understands that there are 4 drivers of chronic disease:  Toxins, Infections, Stress, and Diet.  And it's often a combination of all 4 that lead to a chronic health condition, and thus it takes a treatment plan addressing each of the 4 to resolve and reclaim good health.  Tracy has recovered from 2 "perfect storm" situations which had drastic effects on her health and led to multiple mystery illnesses and diagnosis including Lyme.

By reducing the burden of these triggers, Tracy is successfully resolving:

  • Fatigue (anemia's, adrenals, thyroid-related, chronic fatigue syndrome, ME-CFS)
  • Auto Immune Conditions (Hashimoto's, Lupus, MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Celiac)
  • Mental Health Conditions (anxiety, depression, OCD, ADD/ADHD)
  • Cognitive Dysfunction (trouble concentrating, forgetfulness, symptoms of early Alzheimer's)
  • Digestive Disorders (low hydrochloric acid, "leaky gut", Candida Albicans, Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth SIBO, IBS, Crohn's Disease, Ulcerative Colitis)
  • Migraines and chronic headaches
If you've one or more of the above-mentioned conditions, or have been told you have Lyme or chronic Lyme,  there's a good chance you are in the right place.If you have a history of chronic sore throats, tonsillitis or tonsillectomy, mononucleosis, glandular fever, shingles, and/or cold sores, there's a good chance you are in the right place.

There are no coincidences.  All good things come from God.