Weight Loss and Working with Genetics: 5 Tips

People tend to use genetics as an excuse for weight gain. While obesity is inclined to run in families, the truth is more complicated than the simple presence or absence of a gene. Studies looking for the genetic causes of weight gain point in the direction of factors such as difficulties processing carbohydrates or fat. Knowing that you have one of these factors can help with developing an appropriate food or exercise plan. However, as with any new technology, it can be difficult to understand and incorporate this new tool into your lifestyle. Here are some tips about working with genetics and weight loss.

1. Don’t Expect a Magic Bullet

Genetic testing will help you to learn more about your body and how it processes food and gains weight. Tests can reveal how easily you absorb different vitamins from food and what weight loss response you can expect from exercise. So, the tests can help you to optimize your diet and exercise plans, making weight loss easier, but you will still have to stick to the diet and exercise plan for them to work.

2. Don’t Despair over Your Genetic Profile

A study showed that around 45% of white women are predisposed to needing a low-carbohydrate diet and 39% of white women need a low-fat diet to maintain a healthy weight. However, these tendencies don’t mean that these women are all going to end up obese. Don’t despair if your genetic test comes back showing you are at risk of lifestyle conditions like obesity. You may not be able to change your DNA, but you can control any disadvantages you have with the right choices. 

3. Shop around for the Best Deal

There are several companies already offering genetic testing and no doubt more are on the way. The prices and tests vary wildly from company to company, from under $200 to more than $1000 per test. Read company reviews and understand what they are each offering before you decide.

4. Take Advantage of What’s on Offer

Many genetic testing companies offer sessions with a genetic counselor, as well as tailored diets or online tools to assist you after you receive the results of your test. The tests can be expensive, so take advantage of everything that’s on offer, particularly the counseling. This will help you to incorporate your results into your lifestyle.

5. Understand Your Results

A test will do you no good if you cannot understand what the results mean to you. While the company will probably provide the results in layman’s terms, you should make sure you know how to incorporate them into your daily life. Being told you will respond well to intense exercise won’t help you if you don’t know what intense exercise means. Try discussing your results with a personal trainer or a nutritionist to take full advantage of them.

Genetic testing is a new tool in the battle against obesity. It can help you to develop exercise and eating plans that are tailored specifically to how your body works. Working with your genetics instead of against them can give you an advantage that will lead to weight loss that lasts. 


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