Genetics Training

Nutrition and genetics









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Nutrigenetics: healthy nutrition according to your genes - genetic counseling training

Chapter 4

Training video

How do genes influence what types of food are healthy and which are unhealthy for you? Training for genetic counseling on the concept of nutrigenetics.

Spoken text of the video

Section 1: Intro

This is a specific training for nutrigenetics which basically is all about eating healthy based on your genes. There are big differences from person to the next. Now the DNAnutriControl program has two functions. So one is the weight sensor which is all about how I can lose weight and maintain weight easily. This is not part of this training, there is another training for this. This part is all about the nutrition center where you find out how you eat healthy based on your genes. Both of them can be ordered together when you have the DNAnutriControl package.

Section 2: Nutrigenetics

And now we are talking about the nutrition sensor part. It is all about genetically healthy diet. Now, let me explain the concept; generally people they think they know what a healthy diet is, because eat a lot of food, eat a low fat low, calories and that is healthy. However unfortunately, it is not as simple as this.

Let us just look at these three genetic diseases: one of these people is lactose intolerant found in milk and sugar, one of them is gluten intolerant, so reacts bad to wheat protein and one of them has an iron overload disorder, meaning that he absorbs too much iron from food which could cause a problem. These three things are genetic diseases.

Now a nutritionist comes along, opens his generalized book and he says dairy products are healthy source of calcium. Dairy products are healthy for you which is true; they contain a lot of calcium which is good for bones. However for a lactose intolerant person that is pretty much the worst you can do to him, to make him eat lactose. For this person, due to his genetic tendency, lactose contains dairy products which are not a good idea. He should eat other sources of calcium such as broccoli. For the gluten intolerant person it is not a problem and also for the iron overload disorder person. It is absolutely true there is a lot of calcium, it is a healthy type of food for these two people. Then the nutritionist goes on and says whole grain bread is healthy, it has got a lot of fiber, it is good for digestion. Now, that is absolutely true for a lactose intolerant person. A person who is gluten intolerant is going to have the worst digestive problems and for the person with iron overload disorder again it is actually good and tastes good and it is good for digestion due to the large amount of fiber. And red meat is low-fat and it is a good source of iron, so it is healthy, especially for people with iron deficiency, absolutely true for lactose intolerant people and gluten intolerant people. The people that do absorb much and much iron from food where it can become a problem, a good source of iron not a good idea.

So what this shows is just three different genetic diseases and three different nutritional advices and really just by combining them we can find that everyone reacts to everything differently. So it is very difficult to find one recommendation that will apply to everyone the same, and that is exactly the problem. We have generalized recommendations and this is what nutrigenetics promises, the ability to look into a gene, find out what are your genetic variations and genetic risks are and to change the nutrition and counteract these effects. Some critics say nutrigenetics is going to be the future. However it is too soon. There is no nutrigenetic information yet. However what they tend to fail to see is that nutrigenetics is part of so many people’s lives already.

For example lactose intolerance, it is the most common food intolerance in Europe. One in five people is lactose intolerant and will also have very strong side effects from a lactose-rich diet. So what they do is they do not eat lactose because of their genetic variation. They are already nutrigenetically modifying the diet. The same goes for gluten intolerance. It is not a new story, it is not a new concept this nutrigenetics, it is something people have been doing for thousands of years. It is only now that we do not have to wait the symptoms to arise but we can do all of these genetic tests and can modify the nutrition to adapt the genes. It is just a new level of nutrigenetics, but it is the same concept that has been around for a long time.

Section 3: Nutrition and genetics

Alright, so let us look at the concept of nutrition and genetics. We have a number of genes a number of environmental influences or unhealthy aspects of our lives that do pose a health risk. And nature is structured in such a way that if it knows that there is a toxin or something, it tends to find a way and we have a number of different genes that protect us from these environmental risks.

Let’s have a look at a few examples. Oxidative stress is when free radicals are produced. It is a toxic chemical that damages the tissue and causes ageing for example. It can also cause cancer so you need protection from oxidative stress and that is why we have genes like gpx1 and sod2 that protect us from this oxidative stress and so we are protected. And the two are in the aggressive immune system, so the body’s own defense system could damage a lot of the tissues that is why we have some genes that keep the immune system in check, do not be too aggressive, they are just fighting against bacteria. So again tissues and cells are protected.

Homocistein is a kind of like cholesterol. Having a high level in the blood is bad for heart health and so nature says we need to regulate this. And there are some genes which keep the homocitein amount in blood under check, so they do not allow homocistein to go too high. So again heart health is protected. Then there are a number of toxins, heavy metals and so on. They can go into our body and they could cause cancer, toxicity symptoms and again nature says ok we need to do something about this and we have genes that recognize this toxic and remove them from the body and protect our body. So there are a lot of problems that could arise in our bodies and there are genes that are protecting us from them.

Section 4: Genetic variations and micronutrients

So far so good. The problem is that genetic variations in these genes are very common, so what happens? If there is a genetic variation in one of the genes protecting us from oxidative stress, then we lack the protection and the free radicals do a lot of damage to our tissues, they increase ageing of tissues and can cause cancer and everything.

Then if the genes for homocistein regulation are defective, they do not do the job, homocistein can increase, they can have a very bad effect on heart health and again we are not protected. And if the genes that are necessary to remove toxins from our body are defective and the toxins are not removed, they can cause cancer, lung cancer and all sorts of problems and again we are not protected. Alright so genetic variations can disrupt protective functions in our body. So far this is understood. However, there are certain micronutrients which can help restore some of these functions.

Now let us look at this in more detail. Oxidative stress is that free radicals, toxic chemicals that damage the tissues. There are however antioxidants, which you might have heard about, and antioxidants are sort of vitamins, vitamin C, E Alpha lipoic acid and so on, and different substances that can grab onto free radicals and neutralize them. So, if we do not have the protection from the genes, we can counteract it with higher amounts of certain antioxidants vitamins they can then counteract the free radicals. So by having a healthy nutrition with more antioxidants we can help help balance out this genetic deficiency this person would have. And homocistein regulation, homocistein would be maybe too high due to genetic variations.

However folic acid or folate, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 happen to be efficient in lowering homocistein again. So, if the genes do not keep checking on it, we can do it with certain micronutrients that we find in food that then remove toxins. If heavy metals such as lead are not removed from the body, calcium, iron and selenium have been found to bind certain heavy metals and remove them from the body. It does not mean that if there is not a cure for lead poisoning, taking a calcium supplement is going to help. There you need a chelation therapy which a doctor needs to do immediately, but low levels of lead have been shown to be reduced away from increasing calcium intake. So, with certain micronutrients, certain things we find in food, we can balance out certain genetic deficiencies that we have.

Section 5: Micronutrients, the concept

This here is a summary. This is a very big genetic test. We tested fifty two different genes. There is training where I do counseling for a person that has done the genetic test. I would recommend you to go through this, because it will really tell you all the details. Here I am focusing on the concept to explain the concept of nutrigenetics, so you have a background to understand it, but do watch the training or the personalized counseling for the people that have done the nutrition sensor. It is going to really help you explain things in more detail.

Now, what we look into is bone health for one thing. So bone health, osteoporosis risk has things to do with calcium, vitamin D and magnesium, all these are good stuff. And the bad things are phosphate, they extract calcium from food, and cysteine Methionine acid, they also make bones weaker, so we know things that are not good if you have a high risk and things we should avoid. Then eye health, the health in preventing macular degeneration.

Heart health helps control cholesterol, specifically with omega-3 fatty acid that is a very interesting story which we are going to look at it later. And homocistein with folic acid and vitamin B. And food intolerance like lactose and gluten intolerances. Joint health, rheumatoid arthritis, there omega-3 is helpful. Metabolism health, iron overload disorder, you did too much iron you need to modify how much iron you get. Mental health such as Alzheimer’s disease, we need more antioxidants and detoxification. For heavy metals, we need more calcium, selenium and iron to improve detoxification of heavy metals.

Section 7: Oxidative stress

Alright let us first look at oxidative stress because it is a very interesting topic. Around five percent of oxygen that we are breathing is converted into a free radical called superoxide. Now nature has known that this is a very damaging molecule and has given us defenses against it and if the superoxide is produced outside the cell the SOD3 gene produces the SOD3 enzyme or protein that is converted into a less rooted free radical. Hydrogene peroxide is still a free radical but that is in the process as well. So it is important for this conversion to then get rid of the free radical. That is outside the cell.

The SOD1 gene and protein does it inside the cell, and then we have got this kind of power houses, mitochondria, where superoxide is also converted into a hydrogen peroxide and this is actually where most of superoxide is produced, but thankfully we have the SOD 2 gene that protects us from it. However, unfortunately some people have a genetic variation here that disrupts the function of this gene. What happens is the superoxide that is produced is not neutralized and it damages the cell, the mitochondria and ultimately the tissues and increases the ageing process. This here is a cut off from the report, so you see this kind of information in the report.

This is the science behind it. I usually would not go too far into details with this with customers, this is really for doctors or scientists that want to check up on what we came in. This is a good thing to check up but I will quickly go through it with you. This is just for the SOD2 gene and the first part explains what the gene does, then the three different types. If you do not know what this kind of table means please do watch the simple disease statistics training and the general counsel of genetics because I will explain the three different gene types.

It just means if there are two copies of this gene, this genetic variation is what we are looking at and both copies have a Z or both copies might have a T or one of them might have a Z and one a T. So these are the three options that we have. In here you see that twenty percent of the general population, everybody else around you has a C C gene type, fifty three have a C T gene type and twenty seven have T T. You see twenty percent have this good protection, fifty three have, at least one of them being active, still some protection but less, and twenty seven percent, almost a third of the population, do not have this protection against superoxide in mitochondria.

So what do we do if we know there is a genetic variation? There is no way to fix this gene, unfortunately not yet, so what we can do is use higher amounts of these antioxidants to help fight against free radicals. That is a little more complicated because vitamin E and fat soluble would only do the protection in the membranes but the overall concept is understandable. Alright, so the logic is we test the SOD 2 gene. If it produces the SOD2 protein, we know we need normal amounts of antioxidants, the normal recommended in a daily allowance and the result is you are going to be protected. However, there is a genetic variation that modifies this gene, then no SOD2 protein is produced, you are lacking this protection and we are going to counteract it with higher amounts of these vitamins and so on.

So, now we know we need higher amounts of vitamin C E A and so on, how should you recover them? How should you make sure that your body has all of these nutrients? And of course the right answer is always through healthy nutrition and for example antioxidants, you can get them through eating more fruits, they may have antioxidants, also vegetables specifically the colored vegetables. Then if you need more omega 3, you can find it in sea fish, if you need more calcium you can find it in milk products as well as broccoli, if you need less iron you should avoid red meat that has a lot of hemoglobin in it or avoid alcohol because that also increases your iron amounts. If you should have less heavy metal, you should avoid maybe sea fish that tend to be higher in heavy metals and have a lot of heavy metals in them and filter feeders such as shellfish will also have cumulated more heavy metals, so you should eat less of them if your body cannot remove them so much. So, the aim of this nutrigenetic program is to find out what you should eat more of or what you should avoid based on your genetic profile.

Section 8: The food table

And this here is the food table. This is what you would find at the end in the report. It is around one thousand different types of food and for every one of these types of food, we know how much calcium is in there, how much omega-3 fatty acid, how much vitamin A and so on. And we evaluate all of these substances and we check out how important this substance is for you based on your genetic and how important this substance is and then in the end we evaluate this has more good stuff for you and less bad stuff and we recommend this type of food or the other way around and we will not recommend it for you, and the way it is recommended you will find here.

So if you zoom in a little you see these smiley faces here. So, for example generally fish or octopus meat has a lot of smiley faces, happy smiley faces because it contains a lot of substances that for this particular person it is healthy. It is different for a different person with other genes. Cold liver in this case has a lot of negative stuff and some positive stuff and in the end they can balance each other out. So, it is neither healthy nor unhealthy and you can just see that some types of food are healthier and others are not and the aim is to just go for eating more things with happy smiley faces and avoiding the ones with red smiley faces.

In this example, you do not see anybody that might be up to six red unhappy faces, which means it is very unhealthy for you. It is very easy to follow these recommendations, while by just going through and checking out what you can eat, what you should eat more of. Then back here you see the content. This here means octopus meat, a standard amount will be one hundred and fifty grams. This means the standard serving that you would get on a plate if you ordered fried octopus or something then you will have one hundred and fifty grams in average. In those one hundred and fifty grams you will have one hundred and twenty three kilo calories, twenty four percent protein, three percent carbs and one percent fat, not percent sorry grams. And this is basically the main things that carry energy, but then we know it contains a certain amount of cholesterol, a certain amount of vitamin A, a certain amount of vitamins B6 and B12, a certain amount of calcium and so on and we are looking at up to forty different types of ingredients, good stuff as well as bad stuff. We look at the genes and then we ultimately decide if this is good or bad for you.

Now for every type of food there are more than two to five hundred different calculations being done in the background, you cannot just say fruit is healthy because everybody says fruit is healthy, but some fruits might contain certain things which are not good for you and other fruits might contain things that are very good for you, so you cannot just put all fruits in one basket, so to speak, but you have to evaluate every different type of food based on its constituents. Now here you will tend to see red numbers and green numbers, it just means if it is green it is healthy if it is red it is bad for you and this is not genetically adapted, this is the same for everybody. It just says out of all types of food if it is green, this contains something that is healthy and contains particularly much of it and if it is red, it is the opposite, this is unhealthy. And of all this type of food, this type of food contains particularly much of this unhealthy type, so it gives you some insight into why something might be good or bad, but there is a lot more going in the background.

You need to consider all the different calculations to in the end decide if this type of food is good or bad for you because nutrigenetics is not about small, looking into one direction, you need to consider all of the gentic risks, all of the aspects, all of the ingredients of the type of food to be able to deliver what it promises.

Section 9: The program versions

Alright, now this nutrigenetic program comes in different versions. We always test the same genes. It is more than fifty different genes that have influences on cardiovascular health, on diabetes, on iron overload disorder, Alzheimer’s disease as well. However, we do not believe in communicating medical information without the guidance of a physician that explains it to you, this is why we have different versions.

So while we always test the same genes, we always find out you have a high risk of oestoporosis that is why you need more calcium. In some cases we communicate you have a high risk of oestoporosis that is why you need more calcium. In other cases we say due to your genes you need more calcium. So the person in the end does the same recommendations. He just one time knows about the disease, and in other time he does not and this makes the difference between a medical genetic test, we need medical counseling, medical guidance, in some countries it is illegal to do this without a doctor and this is also what we suggest. However in some other cases when it is just a genetic test to improve your nutrition, it is a lifestyle genetic test which not necessarily needs the counseling of a doctor and this here is what it looks like in the lifestyle version.

So you still see the genes, you see the gene type, but we do not find out this is a high risk for cholesterol and so on. So we have here different gene groups. If you ask what this means, you just say this is a laboratory result just like in a blood test, you see a lot of numbers, you do not know what they mean. And this program is going to, the next pages are going to explain to you what it means to you. Because it is very technical, you need to bring scientists to analyze it. And this is the end of the chapter for nutrigenetics, eating healthy based on your diet.

This was supposed to make you understand the concept why people react differently to different types of food and there is a much more elaborate training with this personalized training session that we have. This is another video that is actually aimed at the customer, so you can look through this, just go through it in very more details. The medic version, the one that communicates diseases, will tell you a lot about what kind of different diseases we do look at, what information we do get from it and how this in fact enters our recommendations of food. This was meant to, giving the understanding that everybody is different, people react differently to different types of food and that is generally the concept of nutrigenetics and as I said I would recommend that you also watch the personalized counseling for people that have done the genetic test to find out a lot more about this test.


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