Last updated on Jun 23rd, 2021 at 11:52 am

Your DNA holds information about who you are, where you come from and sometimes even where you are going health-wise

I recently received my report from my Optiphi Health Helix Health & Diet test and found some surprises and about my health, why I struggle to lose weight, and why I piled on the kilos at the beginning of the lockdown.

How it works

During the pandemic, health checks and non-essential tests have taken a back seat. We don’t visit the doctor unless we absolutely have to. Thankfully I was able to take my Optiphi health DNA test in the comfort of my home. The kit was delivered, I simply swabbed the inside of my cheek and sent the test back via courier, and waited for my results. 

The test uses your DNA to determine genetic variations which have been associated with various health risks and concerns. The report also contains useful information to help you make healthier food and supplement decisions to reduce the health risks you might have and optimise your health goals. 

It all just makes sense

The report is so detailed and explains what every tested genome means for you and your health. The explanations are detailed, but you don’t need a qualification in biology to understand what’s what. 

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Having never had a test of this kind before and relying heavily on “Dr Google” to diagnose mild aches and pains, a lot of what was in my health report just made so much sense. 

The lactose blues and other inflammation issues

As a lover of yoghurt, milkshakes, cheese, maas and all things dairy, I was devastated to find that I am actually lactose intolerant! But it does explain my chronic bloating. 

Lactose intolerance also has a relationship with inflammation which would make sense considering my family have a history of rheumatoid arthritis and inflammation of the joints. My report showed that I am prone to inflammation and illnesses and conditions linked to inflammation.

An anti-inflammatory diet was suggested to reduce the risk of inflammation-related conditions. 

The DNA test also explained why losing weight is just so hard

There is a combination of factors in your DNA that can explain your weight gain and weight loss patterns. 

While I do feel vindicated by some of the findings in the report, I also now have to take more responsibility for my health and implementing weight-loss strategies that will actually work for me. 

Weight loss is not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing and I have been struggling to shed my lockdown weight using methods that worked so well for others but did not see to be as effective for me. 

My DNA report found that my body metabolises polyunsaturated fat and sugar slowly – a recipe for quick weight gain and slow weight loss.

Because my body does not metabolise these ‘foods’ quickly, they are not turned into energy efficiently so it would take high-intensity workouts to burn them off – not just as calories (which are energy) but as actual fat. 

What now?

It isn’t all doom and gloom. My Optiphi Health Helix Health & Diet report offered me some great advice on how to structure my meals and even my workouts to lose and maintain my weight. 

I have increased hunger and low satiety, so a starvation diet with tiny portions would really just be torture and possibly trigger an unhealthy binge-fest. 

Instead, a Mediterranean-style diet with large helpings of leafy greens (which will also contribute to a much-needed calcium intake) would be more beneficial. Combining this with high-intensity workouts that are suited to my health and weight loss needs as well as my body type should set me on the road to a healthier, happier and hopefully lighter me.

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