Changing the Way Our Genes Communicate

Posted on Sep 13, 2011 | 5 comments

Changing the Way Our Genes Communicate

Gene Expression Can Be Altered Both Positively & Negatively

We are all born with a certain genetic makeup, and science once believed that this blueprint was permanent and unchangeable — essentially that our DNA dictated our destiny. However, an exciting new field of genetic science is emerging which demonstrates that our gene expression can be influenced and altered for better or worse, based on a number of internal and external triggers. These influences on our genes can change how we age, how our bodies react to lifestyle and environmental factors, our resistance to illness and even how we gain weight, among numerous other influences.

The study of how various factors affect our genes is known as “epigenetics.” Advances in this field are showing how environment, diet, lifestyle and even thoughts and emotions can have just as powerful an impact on gene function as biological lineage. Small changes in the expression of one master regulator gene, coming from a number of potential influences, can cause a ripple effect and ultimately guide the way your genes, cells, and body systems function and communicate.

Regulator Gene That Controls Fat Metabolism Also Affects Diabetes

Researchers from the University of Oxford and King’s College London have discovered the regulatory influence of a gene called KLF14 on other genes found within fat cells in the body, according to a study published in the journal, Nature Genetics. KLF14 has long been linked to metabolic conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes and elevated cholesterol levels, but it was unknown as to what purpose it served. What makes KLF14 special is that it controls the behavior of other important genes in fat cells that are associated with body-mass index, insulin, glucose levels and cholesterol. “KLF14 seems to act as a master switch controlling processes that connect changes in the behavior of subcutaneous fat to disturbances in the muscle and liver…” said Mark McCarthy from Oxford University. The study confirms that KLF14 behaves as a regulator of many metabolic traits including blood glucose levels, fat and cholesterol metabolism, and more. If we are able to make a positive influence on KLF14 gene function through diet, supplementation and lifestyle habits, we can successfully control various metabolic traits, leading to improved insulin function, better fat metabolism and other benefits.

How Foods and Botanicals Communicate with Our DNA

The complex interrelationship between genes, phytochemicals and nutrients, and lifestyle choices is just beginning to be understood by science. However, natural medicine has been using these principles for healing since ancient times. Many botanicals, herbs and nutrients “communicate” with our bodies on a cellular level and influence genetic expression and our DNA specifically to promote health and balance. Research is now finding that the chemicals contained in certain foods and botanicals send signals to our DNA, optimizing healthy cellular function. Common examples include green tea, curcumin or tumeric, and compounds in the cruciferous vegetable family. Vitamin D also “talks” to your genes, which is one reason why adequate Vitamin D intake is so crucial for your health.

Combining Eastern Medicine with Modern Health Systems

In my practice, I use a number of time-tested and medically-researched herbs and botanicals that provide natural assistance for addressing conditions such as metabolic syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes, among other chronic or life-threatening illnesses. Many of these natural remedies, which have been used for centuries, are now found to work by communicating with specific genes within our cellular DNA, promoting healthy cell communication and function. By combining elements from both Eastern and Western health systems, certain natural formulas provide comprehensive synergistic benefits to support increased antioxidant activity, improved digestion, healthy inflammation response, healthy glucose metabolism, healthier lipid profiles and increased immune activity, among other benefits. Many of these compounds work together on a DNA level to influence positive gene expression and activate health-promoting behaviors, while deactivating harmful gene expression which would otherwise lead to eventual illness. For more information about preventing and controlling diabetes and metabolic syndrome naturally, download my complimentary wellness guide.

Your Mind Influences Genetics

Along with targeted herbs and nutrients, even more profound are new scientific findings which demonstrate that your mind and emotions send signals to your cells that also determine your genetic expression. The expression of your genes is influenced greatly by the messages received from YOU, your body, your mind and your emotions. This is something that we have known intuitively, and that all the great spiritual traditions have been teaching for thousands of years. Now modern science is confirming these truths, proving that our mental, emotional and spiritual states of being can greatly influence our DNA.

Meditation is one ancient technique that has recently been shown to promote positive genetic expression and DNA function through practices which calm and focus our mental, emotional and physical states of being. In fact, meditation practice has been shown successful in lowering blood glucose and hypertension in Type 2 Diabetes patients.

Healthy Lifestyle Habits Can Change Your Genetic Destiny

Following a healthy, nutrient-rich diet with the right supplements, engaging in regular exercise and maintaining a positive state of mind can put you on the right path to wellness by balancing your body’s blueprint for health and vitality. This expanding area of genetic research is a very exciting development within medicine, representing a much more holistic understanding of health and disease, and one that has profound possibilities for healing. You can change your genetic destiny and in fact you are doing it at every moment! Take the time to enjoy a warm cup of green tea, take some deep breaths and relax. You have just changed your genetic destiny! This is truly powerful medicine.

Your Thoughts
What do you think about this article? Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section below. We love to hear your feedback!

Share

5 Comments

  1. It’s refreshing and hopeful to get your truthful and informative newsletter on epigenetics! Women are getting their breasts prophylactically lopped off because of a single company’s “patented” test for the BRCA gene!
    Please publish this kind of empowering and effective research more! Your leading a revolution of patient empowerment! Thank you.
    Joel Chudnow, Natural lifestyle Counselor, Wholistc Health Educator

    Baruch HASHEM!

  2. I am fascinated by your discussion of gene expression as it relates to nutrition, cogntion and emotions. I recently saw a TV commercial by the corn industry stating that: “The body does not know the difference between cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup” implying that high fructose is not any more harmful to the body then cane sugar.

    I have heard comments like “the body does not know” all of my life in relationship to natural herbals and neutriceuticals versus pharmaceutical and synthetic drugs. Regardless, I and many others, have ignored “the body is ignorant” argument and forged ahead pursuing health through neutriceuticals, exercise, mind and body work.

    I enjoy your site; it is among many I subscribe to in order to stay in touch with the evolving knowledge about the mind, body, heart association and the best way to nurture this association.

  3. Thank you so much for this information. Keep on! I have passed this newsletter on to family and friends.

  4. The Missing Link
    Thank you for giving me the opportunity to explain the need for a shift in resources toward maintaining wellness. I am a clinical test researcher and I have been involved with systemic change analysis methods and disease pattern recognition for over thirty years. For the last fifteen I have been looking at ways to use systemic biochemical monitoring to measure a persons shift from wellness.

    The USA and the rest of the world must shift their focus from disease management to reducing the over all disease burden. The inability of the individual to link their actions to the harm they are causing themselves and their loved ones is a primary roadblock to improved wellness. Since the majority of clinical tests are only used to identify and manage disease, the public has a false sense of health security. They are led to believe they are well as long as they do not have a defined clinical disease.

    Using new testing protocols that measure epigenetic biochemical changes, an individual can monitor if their intervention is working for management of their disease. These tests can also indicate to someone without disease if their actions are maintaining or improving their wellness. One significant difference in wellness testing compared to disease monitoring is the need to monitor systemic biochemical changes over time instead of using a comparison to some “normal range”. Wellness testing is not dependent on the intervention used. For example, you could have taken a drug, used an herb, practiced yoga, or used group prayer as the intervention.

    Epigenetic biochemical monitoring of change over time is a superior method to monitor subtle systemic changes associated with a return to wellness within days to weeks of starting an intervention. This wellness testing, because it does not identify or monitor disease is not bound by the strict regulations of clinical laboratories. Epigenetic testing is done on a standard blood sample, but there are restrictions in some states that restrict the acquiring a blood sample.

    At http://www.nutritionmonitoring.info a test protocol is described. The client must first determine their baseline of their systemic biochemical systems and then from a follow-up sample a comparison is generated.

    With knowledge there is the possibility that more and more people will choose behaviors and actions that enhance their personal wellness and that of their loved ones, and the overall disease burden will be reduced. These laboratory tests should also make “true personalized medicine” a reality. Laboratory tests should look at you as an individual, not you as a group of a million or more.

    Thank you

  5. I enjoyed your article on epigenetics; i have been seeing information starting to come out on this topic here and there. To me it means that we have yet more encouragement to affect our own destiny. On the other hand, I’ve known some-thinking of one friend, in particular(he died of diabetes)-who have felt completely defeated and powerless by the idea that genes dictate our state of health.
    I really like how you wrote about taking a long, slow deep breath and immediately changing your wellness level! That’s a great way to think.
    I want to add that I think that what we expose ourselves to also has an effect on our health. If you (any of you reading this) take the time to notice, when your eyes land upon something beautiful—let’s say an unspoiled wilderness scene or a great piece of art—you feel good in that moment. If you watch violent cop shows on TV, fascinating as they may be, they can be distressing. There are people in your world who make you feel good about being who you really are—spend time with them, there are environments that make you feel relaxed—go there, there are things that are a pleasure for you to gaze upon—you know what to do!!! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Powered by ThreeSided Studios