Ep 16: How to Unlock Personalized Nutrition: Your Genetic Blueprint Explained

Published on: Jun 20, 2024

In the latest episode of the Unforked podcast, we explore the fascinating world of genetics and its big influence on mental and physical wellness. Hosted by Haley, a trauma-informed functional medicine dietitian and holistic mental wellness coach, this episode breaks down the science of nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics. It’s a must-listen for anyone interested in how genetic differences affect physical and mental health and how actionable insights can lead to lasting wellness.

Nutrigenomics and Nutrigenetics: The Key to Personalized Nutrition

The episode starts by introducing two vital concepts in personalized nutrition: nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics. Nutrigenomics studies how nutrients and food compounds influence gene expression. Nutrigenetics looks at how genetic variations affect the body’s reaction to dietary nutrients. These fields show how your diet and genes interact, revealing how specific nutrients can turn genes on or off and impact your health.

For example, omega-3 fatty acids can affect the TNF-alpha gene, which is linked to inflammation. Consuming omega-3s can lower this gene’s activity, reducing inflammation for those prone to chronic issues. This example highlights the power of nutrigenomics to offer personalized dietary advice based on your genetic makeup.

Understanding Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs)

A major part of the episode focuses on single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), which are small genetic variations that can affect physical and mental health outcomes. SNPs are like spelling differences in your genetic code and can influence detoxification, mood stability, nutrient use, metabolism, brain health, and fitness recovery. The episode stresses the importance of viewing SNPs within their biochemical context for a full understanding of their potential impact.

Genetic Testing and Health Optimization

The latter half of the episode looks at the role of genetic testing in finding SNPs and understanding how SNPs may impact your mental health. Genetic tests can offer valuable insights into your susceptibility to various health conditions and traits, providing a roadmap for personalized health interventions. Haley explains that while genetic tests aren’t diagnostic tools, they provide objective information that helps you make informed health decisions with the guidance of a nutrigenomics-trained professional.

Epigenetics: The Influence of Lifestyle Choices on Mental Health and Wellness

Epigenetics, the study of how your habits and environment affect gene expression, is another key topic. The episode explains that the epigenome is flexible and can be changed through diet, lifestyle, stress management, and trauma healing. This means you have the power to influence your genetic expression and health outcomes with your daily choices.

Holistic Mental Wellness: Evidence-Based Approach to Mental Healthcare

The episode emphasizes a holistic approach to mental wellness, integrating nutrigenomics and epigenetics with trauma-informed care. Haley shares insights from her training in nutrigenomics and experience coaching folks at The Fulfilled Fork, showing how genetic insights can play a role in achieving sustainable health results. Listeners are encouraged to see genetic information as just one piece of the puzzle and to consider other factors like lifestyle, symptoms, and trauma when making health decisions.

Actionable Insights for Lasting Health and Optimized Wellness

What sets this episode apart is its focus on providing actionable insights. Haley offers practical tips on how to modulate your epigenome through diet and lifestyle choices, encouraging you to take proactive steps toward health optimization. Whether it’s consuming omega-3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation or understanding your sensitivity to caffeine through genetic testing, the episode equips you with tools to make informed health decisions.

Bottom Line

This episode of Unforked is a treasure trove of information for anyone interested in the intersection of genetics, nutrition, and wellness. By understanding how SNPs interact with your lifestyle and environment, you can unlock new pathways to optimal physical and mental health. Whether you’re new to nutrigenomics or a seasoned health enthusiast, this episode offers valuable knowledge and actionable insights to enhance your holistic mental wellness journey. Don’t miss the chance to transform your health through understanding your genetic blueprint in relation to your unique lifestyle and wellness goals.

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Thank you to YOU, the listener, for being here on this journey together.

With a full heart (but always room for a slice of pizza),

Haley Schroth, RDN, LD, CPT, RYT, CMWC | Founder & Integrative Mental Wellness Coach


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Howdy! I’m Haley. A registered dietitian nutritionist, yoga teacher, personal trainer, and holistic mental wellness coach on a mission to help you transcend the struggle, stress, and suffering that life can bring. I’ve lived through it and discovered a path to feeling amazing in my mind, body, and soul. Now, I want to help you to live your most fulfilled life too through evidence-based nutrition and lifestyle practices!

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