Recently I got my genome (individual genetic makeup) sequenced by the company 23andme.com – on the advice of a nutritional therapist who is helping me look at my genetics – specifically how it interacts with the environment. Working on the ideas of Dr Ben Lynch, author of the course and book ‘Dirty Genes’, I sent off a sample of my saliva just before Christmas and 6 – 8 weeks later I received my results posted online on my very own account. I can then download the raw data files and run them through Lynch’s site Strategene which further analyses the data and shows me my particular SNiPs (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms or single gene mutations) causing problems and what I can do about them.
I was very careful not to do this alone; it could cause considerable consternation to find out, as I did, that I have a higher potential risk of breast cancer and Alzheimer's without having someone to help you interpret the results and give you the all important message that ‘it’s only when you don’t do something about it’. Genes are not destiny they are a predisposition. If we know where our weaknesses lie we can then intervene to supply the missing nutrients/remove blocks in the system to allow things to start working again.
One of the things that I discovered was a problem with the MTHFR (methyl tetrahydrofolate) gene which means I have trouble with methylation – this is a process very much involved in detoxification and gene expression so explains why I’ve had a fatigue related syndrome (CFS/ME), why I struggle with paint fumes (the antioxidant glutathione SNiP GSH is also involved here and low in me), and why I have had migraines all my life. It’s really important information..
So, what can you do about it. Well the short answer is to replace those nutrients/co-factors within the metabolic pathways controlled by these genes, and to unblock the systems that are malfunctioning. The best way you can do this is to open the elimination channels, remove toxic burden and clean the cell. I am therefore following Dr Dan Pompa’s True Cellular Detox programme for this, along with some strategic supplements he and my nutritional therapist have prescribed for me. I begin tomorrow with the gluten-free diet, intermittent fasting and exercise regime (both burst training and yoga for stress reduction). I will keep you updated how I get on!
Update January 2020
Well the pills didn't seem to do too much but the exercise was good - I supplemented that with sauna too (which is very detoxing). Menopause seems to have added an extra complication for me which a lot of the online programmes don't mention (they are often designed by men in the 'bio-hacking' arena which has little to say to women's very different biology.