The search for our identities—where we came from, what we’re made of—is a unifying human experience, and our collective fascination with ourselves as individuals has fueled a booming industry around personal DNA testing. Once difficult and expensive even for the most technologically advanced labs, genetic testing is fast becoming a cheap and easy consumer product. More than 12 million people have had their DNA tested by different companies, and that number is expected to grow substantially in the next few years. With a little spit and 200 dollars, you can find out your risk for everything from cystic fibrosis to lactose intolerance.
What Can I Find Out with my DNA test?
Any type of genetic testing, from the consumer-based kits that anyone can buy to the versions that doctors order, can only glean so much information from your DNA. Medical conditions like cancer and heart disease are complex and not likely to be traced to a single aberration in DNA. However, there are some genetic variants that do link to a stronger chance for certain conditions. In those cases, having the genetic change doesn’t ensure that you will develop the condition, but could mean that you have a higher chance of getting the disease.
To sort that out, a Spanish company has created its own unique chip that is able to identify more than 360 information items in the DNA, among which is the susceptibility to polygenic or complex diseases, the diagnosis of monogenic diseases, pharmacogenetic information and phenotypic traits. Thanks to this incorporation of exact biomarkers, the result of the TellmeGen’s DNA test is a 28% more accurate system, compared to than offered by other companies such as the american ‘23andMe’. This makes it a revolutionary DNA test because it offers the analysis of more items at a lower price. The goal of TellmeGen is to provide access to genetic information to people from anywhere in the world. In order to do so, they have developed a platform to store, interpret and update the genetic information when new mutations are discovered. TellmeGen is currently studying more than 555,000 mutations, and they provide this new and updated information at no additional cost.
How Does It Work?
After extracting DNA from your cheek swab or saliva sample, DNA testing companies search your DNA for certain genetic variants. The building blocks of DNA are chemical bases called nucleotides, which come in four varieties—A, T, C, and G (adenine, thymine, cytosine, and guanine, respectively). We have 3 billion pairs of these bases, so 6 billion letters in all, strung together in a sequence. Altogether, this genetic information is called your genome.
DNA testing companies determine which of the four letters is present at many locations in your genome. Much of the sequence is shared among humans, so the companies focus on specific letters that vary from person to person, known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Many SNPs have some biological relevance. For example, having one variant of a specific SNP near the gene OCA2, which codes for a protein believed to be involved in producing the dark pigment melanin, makes it much more likely you’ll have blue or green eyes. Other traits and even some diseases are also associated with certain SNPs, some more strongly than others.
The pioneering technology behind TellmeGen’s system is the genotyping chip, which is then analyzed in the sequencers of their many laboratories spread throughout Europe and Latin America. Thus, the system is based on scientific evidence and reaches 99.99% reliability. To get their DNA tested, all the user has to do is putting a sample of his saliva in the tube that arrives at home inside the TellmeGen Kit box and send it back to the company. You can get the DNA test on Amazon.com. Four to six weeks later, the client receives an electronic notification that his health map is already available online. In addition to the genetic information, each item in the genetic map is associated with the latest recommendations on health prevention. The users also have access to a free public forum where they can interact with medical professionals to interpret their results, and they can also hire the services of a specialist for a better interpretation of the results in an individual consultation.
How Much Does It Cost?
The idea of knowing our health’s risks in advance to be able to prevent diseases is always appealing, but the real question is: how much does a DNA test cost? TellmeGen wanted make genetic health maps affordable to everyone, and in order to do so they based their strategy on adjusting the costs. After years of previous study and analysis, they finally managed to launch TellmeGen DNA test kit, which reduces the average 3,500€ price to 199$, greatly improving the ratio items / price of any other market test.
Plus, the analysis offers four types of results in a single analysis for the same price: risk of the most common diseases, monogenic diseases, pharmacology and personal traits. In addition, in a few weeks ‘Ancestry’ will also be offered for the same price. Customers who used the kit prior to this will not have to pay more, as the results will automatically be updated for free.
Chronic Pain: How To Regain Control Over Your Life Naturally
Chronic pain is estimated to affect over 50 million Americans and is becoming an even more popular condition. Due to our lifestyles, posture, exercise level, and diet, an increasing number of people have started to suffer from chronic pain. In some cases, pain can be minimal and only represent a minor inconvenience. However, in some other cases, chronic pain can take over your life and be so overwhelming that it might prevent you from enjoying even the easiest daily tasks. Depending on the cause behind it, chronic pain can develop from mild to severe. Therefore, while there is no definitive cure, chronic pain needs to be addressed. Here are five non-invasive ways to find chronic pain relief naturally.
Understand the Underlying Causes
Firstly, it is crucial to understand what are the causes behind your chronic pain. You might have been the victim of an accident, or you might have reported injuries that haven’t healed. Alternatively, an inactive lifestyle and bad posture can also lead to lower back, sciatica, and leg pain.
In some cases, some chronic diseases such as cancer and arthritis might be the cause behind the pain. Before trying to find a solution for your pain, it is crucial to understand what is the underlying cause. This will help you avoid unnecessary painkillers and move towards a longer-lasting solution.
Use Meditation and Breathing Techniques
One of the main factors that can worsen your chronic pain is stress. Indeed, stress causes damage to cells and leads to increased free radicals. In turn, these can worsen inflammation and prevent your body from healing.
Breathing techniques and meditation are mindfulness practices that allow you to focus on your breath, repeat a mantra, or focus your attention inward. This can allow you to avoid additional stress and reduce inflammation.
Aim To Move Your Body Regularly
Regular exercise is essential to allow your body to release endorphins – the happiness hormone! These compounds are the ones responsible for the famous “runner’s high” and act as mood regulators. In turn, this can reduce stress levels and allow you to feel more balanced. Exercise is also essential to help you get rid of any extra weight you might be carrying. By doing so, you can lighten up your body, which takes pressure away from your muscles, joints, and bones. And of course, it can help you reduce the risk of conditions such as heart disease.
Consider a Plant-Based Lifestyle
Studies have proven that whole grain, plant-based lifestyle can reduce fatigue and chronic pain. Indeed, fruits and vegetables are famously filled with the antioxidants your body needs to reduce inflammation and the damaging effects of free radicals. Speaking to your nutritionist allows you to get started in the right way.
Try Medical Marijuana
Medical marijuana has been seen to help with certain kinds of chronic pain. If you are affected by severe chronic pain which is impacting your life, or you have an underlying condition such as arthritis or cancer, you might be able to obtain a medical marijuana card. You can learn all about Harvest House of Cannabis and how to apply for a medical card here.
Unconventional Ways to Boost Your Health
With health tips and diets around every corner, it can be hard to know what the best course is going to be for your body. Between fad diets and finding the best workout gear, it can be overwhelming. Finding the specific rhythm to support what your body needs is going to be a lifelong journey, but there are things that you can do to get off to a good start.
Establish a Baseline
In order to know what specific health goals you need to have, you first need to establish a baseline. It is important to start with the basics and make sure that you are making generally healthy choices before you can start getting more specific.
Even though each person is different and will require different health goals, there are some things that are in common across all bodies. You need to be getting enough sleep. Not getting enough sleep can mess with your health in surprising ways. You also need to be drinking enough water each day. Most people are not drinking enough water. Being dehydrated can cause you to overeat and to be fatigued during the day. You may be surprised to see how just changing your sleep and water intake patterns can give you an extra boost.
You should also make healthy eating choices and try to get some exercise. If you are just starting on your wellness journey, then you should take small steps. If you try to take on too much at once, you will likely not be able to sustain the change.
You can start by adding more vegetables to your meals instead of trying to change what you eat. Even if you continue to eat like normal, but add in more vegetables, you will eventually be able to change your diet more drastically. You can also try switching to only drinking water instead of any other kind of beverage with your meals. This will also help with your water intake.
For exercise, you don’t have to go running, even though that is probably what pops into your head first. You can start by just doing stretches before bed or going for a walk during your lunch break. Start where you are and then build on that.
Talk to Your Doctor
You should make sure that you go to your regular checkups with your doctor. If you have concerns about specific health issues, then discuss them with your doctor. If you are looking for advice in general, you can ask what their biggest concerns are and where your focus should be for improvements. They have insights into your health that can help you on your path to wellness.
There may be changes you need to make to your environment in order to be functioning at one hundred percent. You should have your home tested for toxins and hazardous gases to make sure that you are not breathing in anything that may be harmful to you. You may also want to be asking questions like, What is the Safe Distance From Wifi Router? Or, does my electrical wiring need to be updated. Making these changes can improve your health if there is something happening that shouldn’t be happening. You may be surprised to find out how your health can change when these silent issues get resolved.
How To Stay Positive During the Extended Lockdown
The most recent months have been overwhelming for countless individuals, with millions worldwide dealing with stress, grief, job losses, financial challenges, and the need to isolate all due to the coronavirus pandemic. As in the UK and US, there’s a potential lockdown in several countries due to the recent surge in covid-19 cases. This may heighten your anxiety levels surrounding the pandemic. How do you cope? With limited access to your loved ones and outdoor places, you should consider these five ways to help you stay positive during the lockdown.
1. Get active
While experts have stressed the need for physical activity, getting out to exercise is impossible due to the pandemic. However, physical activity is essential to boosting your mood and keeping you positive all through the day. Engaging in regular exercising triggers endorphin release into your bloodstream for pain relief and good well-being. Further studies have proposed increasing electrical activity in emotional areas of the brain, especially the prefrontal cortex hippocampus. Exercises like jumping sticks, planking, happy frogs, and even an excellent early morning stretch is useful for maintaining a positive mood all day long.
2. Remind yourself of life’s positives
Several pieces of research have proposed the importance of daily gratitude to individual well-being. From greater satisfaction to better sleep, happiness, and improved mood, the benefits of being grateful every day is immeasurable. But how can you be positive with all the chaos around? You can begin to integrate this mindset by writing down three things you appreciate each day, towards the day’s end. It could be a good coffee, hot bath, or a supportive spouse. No matter how little they might seem, write them down, and over time you’ll realize the enormous number of things you can be grateful for.
3. Find an escape from alcohol
During lockdowns, it’s easy to resort to drinking alcohol to keep positive due to its antidepressant effects. However, it can only make you feel better for just a short while. Meanwhile, the long-term impact of alcohol consumption doesn’t present a good look. Why not cut back on the alcohol and go for something more non-alcoholic? If you’re looking for another alternative, why not check Haylees World for a much safer escape? Your liver and lungs will be grateful.
4. Keep in touch with loved ones
Lockdown or social distancing doesn’t mean cutting ties from your friends and loved ones. If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the pandemic so far, it’s the crucial role our families, friends, and loved ones play in our daily lives. While it may be physically impossible to reach out, there are many tools and apps, for example, Zoom, that you can utilize to remain in touch with everyone else. Reaching out to loved ones can help minimize the mental and psychological impact of the pandemic. It’s indispensable to stay connected to build your support bubble. Create a regular schedule of friends, family, or colleagues you can engage via virtual apps to stay connected.
Nations worldwide are recording a spike in COVID-19 cases despite managing to slow down the infection rates earlier. With many countries recording massive COVID cases every day, state and health authorities will likely push for stricter measures and perhaps a new lockdown. However, these should guide you during the period.
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