Nutritional genomics: The personalized diet of the moment

The interaction between the genes and the absorption of nutrients is determinant for the health status and well-being.

The genetics performance has advanced quickly regarding the search for better quality of life and prevention of diseases. Not only due to the development of diagnostic tools that drive personalized genomic medicine, but also because of the possibility of perceiving each individual as a unique being.

Inspired by this reality, more and more people are seeking to personalize their lifestyle in order to develop healthy habits and prevent diseases that can become chronic in the adulthood, such as obesity, diabetes and hypertension. And feeding is among the several factors that can influence this process.

Our food choices are clearly reflected in the molecular and physiological mechanisms of our organism. What is good for a person’s diet may not be good for another. Based on the genetic composition, people can benefit more or less from certain vitamins or minerals, such as folic acid, iron and vitamin D, which are key elements of essential metabolic pathways to physiological homeostasis.

In this current universe, nutrigenetics enables the study of the relationship between genes and foods, that is, learning the individual’s genetic predisposition to their diet. The objective of this strand of the genetics is to help to understand the metabolic response of the food in each person’s diet and therefore the potential effect they have on the body. The unique genetic composition reflects on individual nutritional needs. Thus, adjusting the diet according to the genetic profile is an important ally to maintain the health status, and it may even prevent sickness and the development of diseases.

In order to obtain a personalized diet, the genetic factors that regulate the various metabolic pathways through different nutritional elements must be known. By learning these needs, a personalized diet can be prepared, allowing the supply of nutrients necessary for each individual, thus, enabling the achievement of a health status in function of their genetics.

Following this exploratory movement of the genetic nutritional profile, SYNLAB has developed two platforms of nutrigenetics analysis. The Nutrihealth test is a comprehensive review that includes the simultaneous analysis of 123 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) located in 95 genes. These variants are genetic markers, with proven scientific evidence, which are related to nutrition, sports, addictions (alcohol and smoking), metabolism, detoxification, and aging. The results presented in an illustrated report, full of information and guidelines, allows you to develop a personalized nutrition plan, as well as a complete and personalized health plan that includes parameters related to sports activities.

A second strand of analysis, the Wellness Check test aims to evaluate the individuals’ genetic predisposition regarding the metabolism regulation and other processes related to nutrition. The test analyzes the genetic variants of 24 genes that act on different metabolic pathways: oxidative stress, inflammation, metabolic intolerances (gluten and lactose), detoxification, salt sensitivity, homocysteine ​​metabolism, and cholesterol levels. The result enables the configuration of a genetic profile and personalized recommendations in both nutrition and other lifestyle factors.

About SYNLAB

SYNLAB offers a full range of medical laboratory services for practising doctors, clinics and the pharmaceutical industry. The SYNLAB Group is the uncontested leader on the European market for human medicine laboratory services.

Bibliographical references

  1. https://www.nutrigeneticresearch.org/ <acessado em 06 de maio de 2019>
  2. Corella D1, Barragán R, Ordovás JM, Coltell Ó. Nutrigenetics, nutrigenomics and Mediterranean diet: a new vision for gastronomy. Nutr Hosp. 2018 Jun 12;35(Spec No4):19-27. doi: 10.20960/nh.2120.
  3. https://www.nutrigenetics.net/ <acessado em 05 de maio de 2019>
  4. Carsten Carlberg. Nutrigenomics of Vitamin D. 2019 Mar; 11(3): 676.

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