Genetics is amazing. It tells us so much about humanity and it’s a minefield of information. Admittedly, it’s a minefield that has only just been touched upon, but scientists argue that genetics is the answer to everything – so does that include diet and fitness? Companies like DNAFit say yes. They argue that the results of a DNA test will allow you to develop a personal gene-based diet and fitness plan that works for you – and that brings a whole new meaning to the term ‘tailor-made’. It may sound like a futuristic way to develop a fitness plan, and the possibilities are nothing if not intriguing, but there are some questions of the efficacy of these tests. So can they really help you improve your diet and fitness? And are they worth the money?
What They Do
At a very basic level, our genes dictate everything. Like a computer code written into us before we’re even born, our genes influence everything we do in life and how we respond to different external stimuli – and that, of course, includes how we respond to different foods and exercises. It makes sense, then, that a DNA test could tell us what foods are best for us to eat and which exercises will have the best results. Companies like DNAFit are now branching out from working with only professional athletes to providing home-testing kits and the results can provide information about your sensitivity to carbohydrates, salt, saturated fats, lactose, and gluten. You can find out about your specific requirements when it comes to anti-oxidants and vitamins, and your ability to process things like caffeine and alcohol. Not only that, but you can discover which sports suit you best – endurance sports or power sports? These tests even claim to tell you how likely you are to injure yourself during training and how long it will take you to recover.