Healthy living has become more important, since becoming a parent and I’ve decided to make more conscious decisions to explore different ways to maintain a sound body as well as a sound mind.
I previously reviewed 23andMe which was useful in highlighting health risks and helping me understand more about my genetic heritage.
But I wanted to learn more about my specific nutrition needs, and this is a review of my experience of the VITL Nutrition DNA Test.
I sought out the product as I want to make better and more conscious health decisions based on my genetics so I can be as healthy as I can for my family.
With so much information about nutrition, it’s not always easy to know what’s the best choice. This test helps to remove the guess work and find out what specifically works for you, by creating a detailed report which explains why you’re likely to respond in particular ways to certain types of food or activities. Then it gives you strategies as how best to approach it.
How does the test work:
Unlike some other tests which require you to produce a saliva sample and then mix it with an preservative fluid, this test is much easier and simpler, essentially you use a swab to take a saliva sample from the inside of your cheek.
You then return it to the lab for analysis, and get your results in about six weeks. The results are either ready to view in the VITL app available on iOS devices or online when you log into your account.
What did the test cover:
The test covered three areas:
1. Digestion & Lifestyle;
2. Fat & Muscle;
What did the test show:
For Digestion & Lifestyle this area gives a good overview of your tolerances to certain foods, and the likelihood of you having digestion issues.
It was useful in noting the risks, then how to make better and more conscious choices.
The Fat & Muscle section was similarly as good. I liked the fact it highlighted the need for healthy fats and the importance of avoiding a low fat diet. As it could prevent you from absorbing minerals, and impact your mood. It advised taking an polyunsaturated fat such as omega-3, which would be beneficial for a number of reasons, including for your mental health.
The part I found particularly useful was the part on nutrients. The report showed that I had normal levels of Iron but low levels of Vitamin D.
Generally two big deficiencies often seen in athletes is shown in low levels of Iron and Vitamin D. This can result in low mood, high fatigue and issues with your bone density, which isn’t conducive to a quality training programme.
To give more detail essentially think of Iron like a car, it’s helps transport the oxygen through the blood to cells and tissues, so they can produce energy and function properly. The report then explains the two types of Iron and which food sources I could get it from.
Moving to Vitamin D, it’s important for the immune system, your bones, and your mood etc.
A deficiency in Vitamin D could result in tiredness, susceptibility to colds, low moods, and general aches and pains. However living in UK it is common for people to have lower levels of Vitamin D, due to lower levels of direct sunlight, which is needed to produce it. Excluding getting it from food, it’s best received from 20 minutes of direct sunlight daily (Then apply the sun cream).
So if it’s not possible to get the sun exposure, one way to counter this is to take Vitamin D supplements mainly during the winter, but for myself it may be better to take them year round, until my Vitamin D is back at the optimal levels.
Whilst I am summarising, the report does go into much more detail about eight key nutrients. Explaining what they are, your gene types, how to manage the nutrient intake, where are the best sources to get your nutrients from etc, and how to maintain optimal levels specifically for you.
The success is it takes the guesswork out of working out what you need to do, and as such I would highly recommend the taking this DNA test, to better understand your nutritional needs.
To find out more:
If you want to try the test for yourself go to this link where, you can get £10 off your order using discount code: MARCUSDNA