Diets Based on DNA?



By AC Chilton (triathlete.com)


Genetic research is showing that different people respond differently to certain foods. Are diets based on DNA the next big breakthrough in sports performance?


Ask for diet advice on Facebook and you’ll get a lot of varying responses. Plant-based! Paleo! Everything in moderation!

For the first time in the history of social media, it turns out that everyone might actually be right.

The old diet cliché of calories in, calories out is being replaced by a new platitude: Do what works for you. Personalized diets, based on the idea of “nutrigenomics” or the study of how different foods affect gene expression, are starting to...

pique the interest of scientists, athletes, and dieters alike. But while there is clear evidence that variations in genes cause different reactions to foods—lactose tolerance, for example, is the result of a tiny adjustment in a single DNA building block which allows certain humans to consume milk beyond infancy—the nitty gritty of hyper–personalized diets is still being worked out. “While many observational studies have identified diet-gene-health interactions, few studies have effectively used this type of information to actually develop personalized diets,” says Patrick Wilson, Ph.D., RD, an assistant professor in Old Dominion University’s Human Movement Sciences department. Furthermore, “Just because someone gets an individualized diet prescription based on genes or other factors does not mean that they will actually follow that diet,” he says. A 2016 study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology found this exact thing to be true. Dieters given advice based on their genetic data didn’t do any better at adhering to their diets than dieters given more generic instructions.  READ MORE

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