Yes, I know it’s controversial but it’s true. Genes do not determine your health! I have a close friend who keeps telling me that the reason he doesn’t lose weight is all down to his parents. It’s not what he does or doesn’t eat he tells me, it’s his genes. They’re to blame. Do you do that as well? Keep blaming your parents for your weight and any diseases you may have? Well, unfortunately or fortunately research doesn’t really back you up.
There’s a lot of debate on this subject but research suggests that genes do not determine disease on their own. Did you know that genes can be turned on and off and that eating the right type of food plays a critical role in determining whether the gene, whether it’s good or bad is turned on or off? In other words how it’s expressed.
I know, it’s hard to swallow if you’ve spent your life blaming your parents when you hold the key to weight loss and improving your own health in your own hands.
As Dr. John McDougall says:
“Genetics is the study of heredity in general and genes (DNA) in particular. Changes in genes occur only over long periods of time (measured in tens of thousands of years) through evolution, whereas expression of the information stored in our genes changes rapidly and is effected by pressures from the outside environment.”
Yes, you’ve guessed it, the outside environment includes the food you eat. In fact it’s one of the main outside factors. So if you eat a diet based on lots of starches, vegetables and fruits and avoid animal derived foods and oils then you stand a good chance of reducing, improving and healing yourself whether that’s because you want to lose a bit of weight or you’re suffering from diabetes or heart disease.
So what does the research say? Well, Oxford University conducted research in 1981 that determined that only 2 or 3 percent of cancer risk can be attributed to genes.
Another study undertaken by scientists within the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the NIH looked at whether identical twins were more likely to get cancers than were other sibling pairs.
These scientists concluded that “. . . knowledge of the cancer mortality experience of an individual will not commonly have strong predictive value for the experience of another individual who has identical genes.”
In other words even although identical twins have essentially the same genes and so they should get the same cancers if their genes are the primary cause this didn’t happen. Genes do not matter! T. Colin Campbell states:
“To be specific, the probability of both identical twins getting cancer was only 1.4 times that for both non-identical twins getting cancer, a result of only borderline statistical significance.”
So, if your genetic tendencies are not set in stone then you have the chance to alter your future health. Suppose your DNA suggests that you’ll get heart disease in your 40s, then you can change that by eating a whole food, plant based diet and keeping yourself fit.
There’s a lot of debate around this, but wouldn’t you rather take control of your own future rather than leaving it to fate? You’ve got nothing to lose. Why don’t you give it a try?
References: T .Colin Campbell Foundation website, Dr Mcdougall website