Nutrigenomics is the study of how diet influences gene expression, and thus, health.
Nutrigenomics as the identification of genes that are involved in physiological responses to diet, and the genes in which small changes, called polymorphisms, may have significant nutritional consequences. Nutrigenetics is then defined as the study of these individual genetic variations or polymorphisms, their interaction with nutritional factors, and their association with health and disease. Others define nutrigenomics as the study of the functional interactions between food and the genome at the molecular, cellular, and organismic levels, and the ways in which individuals respond differently to diets depending on their genetic makeup.
Nutrigenomics, more specifically and less “tongue in cheek,” a discipline that attempts to explain how nutrients, or common dietary chemicals, affect one’s health by altering gene expression. So doing a genetic testing with a nutrition plan helps you interpret your genes and for enables the nutritionist to guide you by a structured nutrition guidance plan-the most personalised nutrition plan that can help you towards a better health.
Based on your genetic report it might be able to answer pertinent questions about your health, and / or give you great directions on how you can plan your nutrition better towards a better more optimum health. A little like crystal ball gazing.
Basic tenets of the discipline include the following:
- Common dietary chemicals act on the human genome, directly or indirectly, to alter gene expression or structure.
- Under certain circumstances and in some individuals, diet can be a serious risk factor for a number of diseases.
- Diet-regulated genes are likely play a role in theincidence, onset, progression, and the severity of chronic diseases.
- The degree to which diet influences the balance between healthy and disease states may depend on an individual’s genetic makeup.
- Dietary intervention(i.e., “customised and individual nutrition”) based on the knowledge of nutritional requirement, status and genotype can be used to prevent, mitigate, or cure chronic diseases.
One reason that nutrigenomics currently is receiving substantial attention is that the necessary science to monitor gene expression finally has been developed. By accurately controlling input to such biological systems (e.g., nutrients), how gene expression varies with input can be measured. Where the function of a particular gene, or set of genes, is understood, one can correlate what one eats with a particular and measurable biological outcome. The outcome may be related to a known disease. Another reason why nutrigenomics is receiving attention may involve recent reports in peer-reviewed journals that show interesting relationships between minerals and beneficial effects in animal models.
Nutrigenomics works differently to the general recommended daily allowances that is intended to prevent nutritional deficiencies in the general population and contrasts with traditional food pyramid and foods/ supplements that are claimed to be beneficial for everyone.
Genetic variations among individuals can result in very varied responses to general diets and specific foods. Nutrigenomics isthus applied better on individuals, sub and subsets of populations, ethnic groups that share genetic similarities to have clearer gazing view on nutrition planning and execution.
Nutrigenomics is a very active field of research worldwide and clinical studies are ongoing. Evidence is accumulating that the nutrients in food and supplements may affect the expression and structure of specific genes.
Leading scientists believe that nutrigenomics has tremendous potential for improving public health. In the future it will probably be possible to analyse DNA to precisely determine individual nutritional guidelines, with diets designed to fit a specific genetic profile. Specific products may be available to meet the health requirements of individuals. Technological developments may enable doctors to perform nutrigenomic tests in their offices. Children can be tested at a young age so that diet can be used as preventative medicine in the long run. The development of nutrigenomics is expected to revolutionize the dietetics profession.
Nutritional genetics is considered as the combination of nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics. Nutrigenomics is establishing the effects of ingested nutrients and other food components on gene expression and gene regulation. It will most importantly determine the individual nutritional requirements based on the genetic makeup of the person. It also reveals why and how people respond differently to the same nutrient.
Qua Nutrition is one of the few nutrition clinics world-wide that have qualified and trained counsellors in this field who can interpret your genetic reports and advise you the worlds most personalised nutrition plan based on its results. Combine it with any specific Nutrition Plan to add bite to the already high level of customisation.