Connection Between Your Genes and Habits
We have learned a lot about how your DNA dictates your health, nutrition and fitness. But, did you know that your HABITS can also be influenced by your genetics? Ever thought why do some people become addicted to certain habits while others don't? Let’s explore the answer to these intriguing questions!!
What are Habits?
Habits are the actions you perform and/ or the choices you make every day and most of the times it becomes the part and parcel of your life. Basically, your life today is the sum of all your habits.
Role of Genetics in Addiction
Addiction is strongly influenced by environmental (Psychological, Social, Emotional, Behavioral) factors. However, there is a now growing body of scientific evidence which supports that addiction has a genetic component. Addiction is 50 percent due to genetic predisposition. The genetic variants influencing tendency for various habits/addiction are generally present in the genes that are part of the brain’s pleasure and reward processing system.
These genetic variants can:
- Either lead to overproduction of the pleasure signals after consuming addictive substances, which makes you to want it more or
- It reduces the displeasure signals so that you can keep taking it more without feeling the adverse effects.
In both the cases, you end up getting addicted to certain substances which can affect your health, if overconsumed.
What DNAwise offers in Habits?
In DNAwise, we test your genetic predisposition for three prevalent habits/addictions that may have a bad effect on your overall health:
- Nicotine Dependence: Nicotine is an addictive substance that is mainly consumed through smoking or chewing. Nicotine dependence increases the risks of heart disease, stroke and cancer. Yet, 1.1 billion people worldwide smoke tobacco (World Health Organization).
- Alcohol Dependence: Alcohol dependence is defined as use of alcohol in larger amounts or for prolonged periods than intended. Heavy alcohol drinking is associated with increased mortality and risk of various health disorders like heart diseases, stroke, chronic liver diseases etc. Still, 3.3 million worldwide die each year from alcohol (World Health Organization).
- Caffeine Consumption: Coffee has the highest caffeine content. Over time, regular coffee or tea drinkers can form a physical dependence (addiction). Excess caffeine consumption can however have adverse effects on our body and must not be over consumed.
Know your Risk and Prevent Addictions
Just because someone may have a strong genetic tendency toward addiction does not mean he or she must surrender to that fate. No one can really change their genetic makeup, but, remember that genetics is only one part of the story, environmental factors is the second part.
Understand the first part (genetic risk) through Genetic Testing (DNAwise) so that you can take charge of the second part to prevent addiction. Check your genetic habits with our new and advanced DNAwise genetic test.
Choose DNAwise based recommendations to prevent bad habits/addictions.