My personal experience & results of genetic testing

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Pure Encapsulations®  

I am excited to share this post with you! For this post, I have partnered with Pure Encapsulationsto share my experience with having the results of my 23andMe genetics test interpreted with their PureGenomics web application. I truly love Pure Encapsulations and have worked with them in the past (which you can read my post here; Gut Health & L-Glutamine). If you aren’t familiar with Pure Encapsulations, they make hypoallergenic dietary supplements that help support our bodies & mind. I consistently take their l-glutamine for my gut health; which was not only recommended by my nutritionist but my gastro doctor as well. After taking my genetic test and discussing my results in such detail with their nutritional genomics expert, Dr. Nathan Morris. I have decided to add a few more vitamins into my daily routine. After speaking with Dr. Morris over the phone and going over my test results, it was interesting to see what my body may need support for despite eating a pretty healthy diet and exercising regularly.

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I know most of you all are familiar with my gut health set backs (previously have suffered from SIBO, leaky gut, IBS, gastroparesis) as well as anxiety and constant migraines- because of this, I try my absolute hardest to eat certain foods that will help improve my gut health, calm down any inflammation and ones that will help contribute to a healthy strong mind. I could always tell that my body was lacking in certain things (whether feeling constantly tired, suffering from bloating, headaches, or having trouble sleeping) and sometimes we can’t always reap all the benefits from the foods we eat; there are always outside toxins, genetics, traveling, or other things that continuously play a role in weakening our immune systems or stressing out our bodies! 

Anyways, about 3 months ago, I took the 23andMe genetics test, so that I could get my raw genetic data and then upload it to the PureGenomics platform. To be honest, I had never heard too much information about nutritional genomics and genetic testing before, but was really excited to take it because my boyfriend just had and a few members of his family did as well. 

You can read exactly how the PureGenomics web application works here; but in a nutshell it is - “a website application that identifies common genetic variations known as Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) that are clinically relevant and nutritionally actionable.  This unique platform makes it easy to TEST, TRANSLATE and TARGET SNPs with the right nutritional support, empowering practitioners with precision and confidence in the pursuit of optimal health for every patient.” 

It sounds overwhelming, so let me break it down for you. SNPs, are simply genetic variations that explain the differences among all of us. PureGenomics looks at the raw genetic data you upload and shows practitioners which SNPs you have and which of those SNPs might have a decrease in function and may benefit from further lab testing and possibly some diet, lifestyle and nutritional support. This is all done by  uploading a simple data file to PureGenomics with the help of your healthcare practitioner. So easy, painless, and simple! 

 The different vitamins that Dr. Morris recommended based on the results of my test.

The different vitamins that Dr. Morris recommended based on the results of my test.

I also discovered things about  how metabolize certain foods (such as coffee & alcohol), the different levels of serotonin my body produces and how that affects my mood, and how well I am likely or less likely able to focus. Deep down, I think most people can get a feel for how their body is; just by certain signals it sends us, but seeing it written out for me (and in graphs too!), helped me fully understand what my body needs, why it lacks certain vitamins (such as Vitamin D and Zinc), and I was able to draw connections. 

For example, from walking through my personal report in the PureGenomics application with Dr. Morris, I learned that I tend to have lower levels of vitamin D, I am more likely to be deficient in B12 & Zinc, and I am likely to have lower levels of serotonin. As a result, a lack of these things plays a major role in my ability to concentrate, my mood, and energy levels. Also, I tend to have high levels of histamine meaning that certain foods or wines may cause inflammation in my body or contribute to my migraines! Since I metabolize coffee and alcohol at a faster rate and I’m unlikely to flush it out optimally, it gets into my blood system quicker which may leave me jittery and have trouble sleeping. See the connections? Knowing which of these SNPs I have enables me to treat my body and mind more effectively by either cutting out the culprit or adding on a few vitamins; such as Vitamin D (to help with mood), B12, as well as a multivitamin. Some of my levels were on the lower scale and therefore it would be nearly impossible to improve through food and exercise only. A good multivitamin and a few others would be beneficial in order to help improve what my body is lacking. 

[DD1] 

There was also a section on weight management SNPs, which I thought was pretty fascinating. Due to genetics, I am the type of person who stays primarily the same weight regardless of diet and exercise. Activities like lifting help me build muscles and strength but yoga keeps me lean; my body can adapt to whatever exercise I take on as well as the foods that I eat. Dr. Morris explained that even if I were to eat a high fat diet, such as the Keto diet, I likely wouldn’t put on weight. However, someone who is the opposite of my genetic make up, that follows the Keto diet might have trouble losing weight and may even gain weight. I thought that was interesting for certain people who tend to follow different diet trends and may not realizing that they are simply eating incorrectly for their body because that diet doesn’t work well with their specific genetic makeup. My results also showed that I may have a reduced ability to convert omega-3 fatty acid precursors (like linolenic acid from flaxseed oil) to activeomega 3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA), and therefore, a dietary supplement would be beneficial for me as fatty fish, nuts, seeds, or certain oils may not be enough to support what I need.* 

-Side note,later on this year PureGenomics will be adding add another piece to their web application that will provide exercise recommendations  based on how your genetics best respond to different types of exercises/workouts; such as HIIT or lower impact. Within the next year, they also are working on delivering SNPs that focuses on gut health - I am really excited for that one. 

We also discussed my inability to focus at times and which vitamin to take to help improve my concentration levels. The test recommended to “Consume a diet high in protein, fiber, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits. Emphasize lean meats, poultry, eggs and fish as protein sources, which are rich sources of amino acid precursors of dopamine and other neurotransmitters.” However, this may be a result of my body lacking certain nutrients due to my gut health, but by adding in a multivitamin or what was recommend by the doctor, I may be able to help improve my entire well-being. Everything is connected! 

 [DD1]Took this out because it describes the results on the 23andme platform - not PureGenomics. We don't share disease risk stats in PureGenomics. 

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The main genetic variation (SNPs) categories that PureGenomics covers  are: 

Methylation 
Vitamin & Mineral 
Detoxification 
Weight Management 
Cognitive Health & Memory 
Glucose Homeostasis 
Immune 

Complete a genetic test kit from 23andme.com or Ancestry.com. Then work with your healthcare practitioner to create a profile on the PureGenomics web application and set up an appointment with them to walk-through your in-depth,personalized report (the above categories!). The report will list the gene, SNP, genotype, what it means, diet & lifestyle recommendations, and which product you may want to add to your routine. It’s important to note that you can only get your PureGenomics report by working directly with a healthcare professional. Genetics can be complicated and you definitely want to work with someone who knows how to interpret the results and can make diet, lifestyle and supplement recommendations that would best fit your needs. 

See the photos below; they are snapshots of my personalized test results. 

 Results from my personalized test. You can see the different categories on the top and then broken down further for each category.

Results from my personalized test. You can see the different categories on the top and then broken down further for each category.

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I personally think that this a great tool for not only patients but practitioners as well. Since all of the information is provided in detail, both in written form and graphs you are able to walk through the information in detail with any of your doctors who have a PureGenomics practitioner account. Then, you can work together to determine the next steps- additional vitamins, exercise routines, and the type of diet to eat that will work best to support both a healthy body and mind. 

I am extremely happy that I had the opportunity to do this, learn about my personalized results, and I am hopeful that adding in the recommended supplements will be beneficial for my overall wellbeing! 

23andMe® is the registered trademark of 23andMe, Inc. Pure Encapsulations is not affiliated with or endorsed by 23andMe®

"ANCESTRY.COM®" is a registered trademark, Pure Encapsulations is not affiliated with ANCESTRY.COM®.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.