I was born like that.
It runs in my family.
I got it from my mama.

Have you ever heard or said these before? We all have genetic traits that we have inherited from our parents and grandparents and so on. Adaptations occur over generations and are passed on through our DNA to our offspring. But did you know that you can change your own DNA within your own life time? Now by changing your DNA I don’t mean that you can become a mutant with superpowers (Hulk anyone?) But it is possible to adjust what genes are turned on or off.

Did you know that you can change your DNA within your own life time?

Epigenetics is a process through which genes undergo change, but not DNA itself. Epigenetic changes occur on the outside of the gene, mainly through a process called methylation. In methylation, clusters of atoms, called methyl groups, attach to the outside of a gene and make the gene more or less able to receive and respond to biochemical signals from the body. For example, turning on certain DNA strands can result in cancer and other diseases. Exercise helps to determine which genes are active and which are inactive, leading to better overall health, reduced risk of cancer and other illnesses. Every time you exercise you repair damage done to your genes through environmental factors. Recent studies have shown that altering your diet and exercise patterns can result in changes at a cellular level that will not only benefit you in your life but can be passed on to the next generation.

Altering your diet and exercise plan will help the right epigenetic changes to occur, resulting in reduced risks of illnesses such as cancer.

Diet also plays a significant role in fortifying your DNA and can subsequently help to ensure you stay genetically strong. Fortifying your diet with fruits and vegetables can decrease DNA oxidisation and inflammation in the body, thanks to the presence of carotenoids and vitamin C intake. Similarly, altering the diet of transgenic mice has shown the ability to strengthen the chromosomes, reducing the signs of ageing, diminishing the growth of cancerous cells, longer life, decreased signs of osteoporosis, and greater glucose uptake. Healthy eating practices in humans seem to replicate the results found in mice by helping to reduce stress on the nervous system, decrease DNA oxidization and cellular stressors, which helps to keep your DNA strong and healthy.

Everybody is different. Our ancestors are from different parts of the world; different foods were available to them; different climates produced foods that would help people thrive in that environment; different diseases have been passed down from generation to generation and your development in the womb was different as well. Epigenetics shows us that our fetal development will determine a lot about our health as we age. This means that the specific environment our genes were exposed to in the womb will have an influence on our health. Diet, exercise and lifestyle determine how our genes function and express themselves and how they will adapt to different environments. We have the capacity to turn up the volume on some genes and silence others, which can improve our overall health and well being. Put simply, we can change our destiny by changing the way we live, and we can pass these changes on to our kids.

Diet, exercise and lifestyle result in turning on the good genes and silencing the other ones.
You have the power to improve your overall health and well being, and to pass it onto your children.

So there you have it. A healthy lifestyle incorporating exercise and a balanced diet will not only change you physically and mentally, but also induce changes on how you use your genes, and ultimately improve your quality of life. For your next gene altering training session, be sure to get in contact with one of our great personal trainers and let us help you change your destiny.

See you in the gym,

Michael.