COVID-19: Nutrigenetic evaluation to prevent weight gain

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Rita Verdasca, nutritionist at SYNLAB Laboratories. Photo: DR

With the appearance of COVID-19 – which forced the temporary closure of gyms at an early stage, mandatory social distancing and, in cases of positive infection, mandatory prophylactic isolation – many Portuguese admit to having stopped regular physical exercise, and neglect largely your food. An oversight that can have serious consequences in the population that has a high predisposition to obesity.

Nutrigenetic analysis

Knowing your genetic profile through an advanced nutrigenetic analysis can prove to be a very important ally in maintaining a healthier body, which makes us feel good with our interior, and in preventing weight gain and obesity. Several studies have shown that people with obesity have achieved better results in weight loss through personalization of the diet – adapting their diet according to the specific nutritional needs of their body – compared to those who have made generic diet plans.

Genetics and food

And the explanation for these results is very simple: our genetics are unique and, as such, our nutritional needs as well. That is why the same eating plan can have excellent results in one person, and have no effect on another. A very common real example is tolerance to coffee. There are those who manage to drink several coffees during the day, and sleep well at night; and other people can only drink one or two coffees until lunchtime, and find it difficult to fall asleep at night if they exceed that average. This is related to our unique genetics, and the way our body metabolizes and processes the various foods.

To know everything about the impact of genetics on your diet, just a simple blood or saliva analysis is enough. The NutriHealth analysis, for example, has proved to be a true personal and personalized guide to nutrition, physical activity, metabolism and lifestyle. This advanced nutrigenetics test assesses very important genetic and environmental factors to discover the type of food most recommended for each of us, based on our DNA. Identifies the amount of nutrients and vitamins your body needs to function in a healthy way; the ability of your metabolism to process sugars and fats, alcohol, caffeine and even lactose. And it reveals how to adapt your eating habits through your insatiability and feeling of hunger, as well as your perception of sweet and bitter taste.

Nutrigenetic analysis to prevent weight gain

It is also an excellent analysis to help prevent weight gain, as it identifies the predisposition for the development of obesity and for addiction to nicotine and alcohol, which are directly associated with an acceleration of aging. It also includes an indication of the type of training most recommended for you, if your genetics reveals that you have a greater predisposition for strength training (weight training), resistance training (cardiovascular) and your risk of injury.

It is important not to confuse nutritional analysis with food intolerance. Food intolerance assesses the immune system’s response to certain foods, indicating the need to limit their consumption (or temporary elimination from the diet) when our body’s reactivity to that food is proven. When we say that a food is bad for us, we are usually talking about food intolerance. Nutrigenetic analysis determines which foods to include or avoid in your diet plan, depending on your genetic profile. The two tests are complementary and allow to improve health through food.

I believe that, in the long run, nutrigenetics may prove to be the only way to optimize nutrition to achieve optimum health, well-being and promote deceleration of the deterioration associated with the aging process.

Author: Rita Verdasca, nutritionist at SYNLAB Laboratories

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