DNA testing is continuing to play a bigger part in progressive healthcare and healthy lifestyles. Not only do genetic tests give individuals insights into how they can improve their lifestyle and diet, but they also put more power in the hands of the average person who wants to take charge of his or her health. Heredity, lifestyle and diet are all intertwined in their effects on quality of life and longevity. Through DNA testing, it’s simple to pinpoint how each of us should live for the best health possible.
Costs and Benefits of DNA Testing
Commercially available DNA tests include a variety of features and are available along a wide price range. No single test is best for every situation. For example, one test might identify genetic preferences toward certain types of food, but another might focus on disease risk. Many DNA tests cost around $250 to $350, but prices vary considerably, especially when custom options are involved.
Genetic testing for disease risk is one of the most popular forms of testing. These tests are usually divided into the categories of autoimmune diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, aging diseases and general health problems. Overviews are helpful for almost everyone, but some people prefer to test for the presence of genetic mutations that raise their risks of specific conditions. This is especially useful for those with a family history of a disease.
With the massive role diet plays in health, many people are eager to find out just how their own genetic makeup relates to the foods they eat. By undergoing dietary DNA testing, anybody can find out whether they presently consume foods that have negative effects on their health or what foods would benefit them most. Although certain foods are known to be healthy, not all are tolerated by every person. For example, this is true with certain fats. Fats that are easily digested by some people are not fully broken down by others, resulting in unhealthy weight gain and disease. One of the most popular tests in the dietary category tests for celiac disease. This relatively common condition can cause vague symptoms that patients may attribute to other causes, but genetic testing can identify the need to stop eating gluten.
Most modern DNA testing uses cotton swabs that have been rubbed around the mouth of the consumer and then dried. Consumers simply send the swab to the testing company as part of a mail-order kit and wait for results. Some types of testing still use blood testing, which is commonly collected by the consumer by pricking a finger.
To get the best results from a DNA test, whether for genetic testing or DNA paternity testing, consumers should use only accredited laboratories with reliable calibration. Consumers should look for AABB, ISO 17025 or both. Like court approved DNA testing, genetic testing for health reasons plays an important role in modern life. With help from a medical professional, consumers can use this data to enhance health in the present and the long term.