Nutritional genomics is a new frontier in scientific research that has shown exciting evidence of a relationship between our genes, nutrition and our health.
A gene is a sequence of DNA that codes for proteins required for functioning of the human body. Humans have two copies of each gene: One copy is inherited from their mother and the other from their father. The combination of the two copies of the gene determine person’s genotype. Most people are about 99% genetically identical, but it is the 1% genetic variation that makes all the difference. Individual genetic variation can affect how we respond to individual nutrients and the foods we eat, giving each of us our own unique nutritional needs.
Nutrigenomics is the study of how individual genetic variation affects a person's response to nutrients and how this impacts the risk of nutrition-related chronic diseases as well as athletic performance, fertility and other health-related outcomes. For example, there is gene variant for the CYP1A2 enzyme that affects how individuals metabolize caffeine. Depending on the gene variant, people can be either “slow” or “fast” metabolizers of caffeine. Those who are “slow” metabolizers of caffeine have been found to have a significantly increased risk of heart attack when they consume more than 200 mg of caffeine per day. The ultimate goal of nutrigenomics is to develop personalized nutrition strategies for optimal health and disease prevention.
Nutrigenomix (R) is a brand of genetic testing which involves a simple saliva test that is analyzed for 45 genetic markers that may affect the way a person responds to food and nutrients. This test will identify the gene variant an individual has and whether they have a typical or elevated risk for a certain health outcome, eating habit or food intolerance under certain dietary conditions. It will also indicate whether the gene variant they have will result in a typical, diminished or enhanced response to a given dietary or fitness intervention. The results will provide actionable information regarding weight management, nutrient metabolism, heart health, food intolerances, eating habits and physical activity. It should be noted that this is a test that identifies relative risk and is not a diagnostic test (i.e. diagnosis of a disease state or condition).
Individuals can choose from 3 available tests: Health, Sport and Fertility.
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We know that general, population-based dietary recommendations do not work for everyone. Nutrigenomix(R) allows a dietitian to better understand a person's nutritional needs and factors that may be contributing to their increased risk of chronic disease. This information can be used to provide customized diet recommendations tailored to their genes in order to optimize their health and well-being and help decrease their risk of disease. Current research shows that people are more highly motivated to adopt healthy dietary habits when given specific information about their genes rather than general diet recommendations. (1)
I am pleased to be an authorized provider of Nutrigenomix(R) . Your genetic information is very personal and confidential. As a registered dietitian, I am a regulated health care professional who must follow the guidelines outlined in the Personal Health Information Protection Act (PIPEDA, 2004) and the Human Rights Code Amendment Act (2013) to ensure that the privacy of your test results is protected.
The Nutrigenomix(R) package includes an initial nutrition consultation and a simple saliva test as well as a follow-up appointment to discuss your results and develop a personalized nutrition care plan (click here for more information). Results are usually available in 2-4 weeks. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns about Nutrigenomix(R) genetic testing.
Eat Well. Live Well.
1) Celis-Morales C, Livingstone KM, Marsaux CF, et al., Food4Me Study. Effect of personalized nutrition on health-related behaviour change: evidence from the Food4Me European randomized controlled trial. Int J Epidemiol 2017;46:578-88.