Holy moly I have not blog posted in SO long - I actually forgot how to use the squarespace interface. Sigh. Moving + new job + masters program have been prioritized over my blogging time. Luckily I'm almost done with my first trimester of my Masters of Nutrition and Integrative Health program and Maryland University of Integrative Health and will have 2 weeks off in between so I can dedicate some time to posting about all of these big life changes then.
On another note, I recently ran my 23andMe reports. I went with the Health + Ancestry service which includes reporting on ancestry, genetic health risks, wellness, traits and carrier status. The process os submitting your DNA is super easy, They send you a little tube to spit in and send back (no blood prick needed!). My one piece of advice here - make sure you take off your lipstick prior to spitting. I never wear lipstick but of course this was the one day I had some one and my spit was pink so I had to dump it, remove the lipstick and start over.
The report took around 6 weeks for me to get back. I wasn't sure how accurate it would be. My aunt told me that she did one of these (with another brand) and the results said she was Jewish and not Italian. The percentage of Italian in my reports was going to determine my trust in the data. I grew up thinking I was 90% Italian and 10% mix but also knew that this was likely just a rough estimate and easy breakout to communicate when people ask "what are you'? Always being very proud of my Italian side, I usually just answered that I was "like" 100% Italian. My report came back with 82.3% Italian...pretty frickin accurate! So I am a believer :) It's very interesting to see the remaining % breakout. I'm 2.6% Balkan (had to look up where that was, NGL), and proudly 0.1% Scandinavian. That must be where I get my Scandinavian-inspired minimalist and neutral decor taste from.
My genetic health risk report showed that I have a slightly increased risk for Celiac Disease which at the time of receiving the report, I found interesting due to my reactions to eating gluten (exhausted and bloated). Last week, I ran blood work and my results showed a weak positive for Celiac. Another confirmation on the accuracy of this data (more to come on this).
My wellness results were all accurate except for one. I do flush from alcohol but only from certain kinds.
Through these main results below, you can click into each category for more information. I really enjoyed the content provided such as how to choose cheeses with less lactose for the lactose intolerants that want to treatyoself.
Another thing that I really liked about this process was being able to extract your raw data. I used this to upload to a free website I found, Genetic Genie, to see if I had the MTHFR gene mutation which is associated with poor methylation and enzyme production and has a variety of symptoms from neurological to inhibiting your ability to process and break down folic acid and toxins. According to the report I do have a compound heterozygous mutation of the gene. I wasn't sure about the accuracy of this so I double checked it in my blood work and do in fact have this exact mutation. This website lays everything MTHFR out very clearly. I'll have to do more research and work with my functional medicine practitioner, Dr. Nicole Rivera from Integrative Wellness Group, to make sure I am supplementing and modifying my diet as needed.
Lastly, after receiving my results, the 23andMe team emailed me that they have been authorized to provide reporting on the BRCA genes associated with breast and ovarian cancer. Even though I have already received my reports, I can still choose whether I would like to see this data. Breast cancer does run in my family and a few years ago I tried to get this testing performed but it wasn't covered by insurance and was very expensive. I'm excited to see companies like 23andMe working to make these results more affordable and accessible for everyone.