Our understanding of genes, has increased greatly since the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003. This project resulted in a mass of valuable data and information about one’s unique and personalised nutrition requirements. It is incredible that this can be discovered from a little bit of cotton on the bottom of a plastic stick!
Now, apart from sperm and egg cells and also red blood cells, almost every cell in the body holds a full copy of your complete genetic code. Whilst the base code stays the same, the many assorted cells handle that genetic code in their own unique manner!
This means that looking at the sample, which is taken from the inside of your cheeks, we are able to determine and analyse the code for genes, which impact your diet, nutrition and eating behaviour. Once our lab receive your swab, your DNA is purified and amplified through a process known as the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). This converts the minuscule quantity of DNA from your sample into an adequate quantity, which is able to be examined. At The What IF Plan, we are looking for variants in certain genes associated to nutrition when we analyse your sample.
Long chains of repeating sub-units called nucleotides, hundreds to thousands of which can make up a single gene, and the sequence of these nucleotides is extremely significant as it determines the function of the gene. Frequently, the positions in the sequence are identical between individuals, in fact approximately 99.5% of humans are the same genetically. However, at a certain position the nucleotides can be in varying forms – Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNPs). Such tiny variations can result in profound variances in the overall function of the gene. It is these variations, which we consider that you see in The What IF Plan report.
Due to continuing research in the world of genetics, we are able to recognise the characteristic sequence of human genes, and which are the most common variants in genes. This information derived from a substantial number of genome wide association studies, which have recognised that certain genetic variants are related to certain attributes. Subsequently, studies which follow-up on these identified genes then provide us with more data regarding how they work, how we can influence our lifestyle and environment to achieve our goals quickly and effortlessly.
At The What IF Plan, we consider 31 SNPs, associated with nutrition, to report on areas including: carbohydrate sensitivity, saturated fat sensitivity, gluten sensitivity and caffeine sensitivity and more! These genetic results gives you the knowledge to bring your diet into line and on the road to your goal weight and optimum health!