Are we medically advanced to correct or reset our DNA?
Many times a week I hear this statement:
“I need to lose weight, and change my health. Is there a magic mix for me and is there anyway to get a jumpstart on it?”
One of my favorite things to do is helping clients put the puzzle pieces of their lifestyle mix together to help faciliate change. What that looks like is individual for each person. There is some magic to know about but eventually it boils down to good old-fashioned planning and a “stick to it attitude.”
Let’s start with the magic:
Research shows when you start making changes in 4 lifestyle areas your genes sense the change within 2 weeks. This means your body changes the way it responds to your DNA within 14 days to making the way for lowering blood pressure, blood glucose levels, weight, and even how quickly your body ages.
And those 4 lifestyle factors are?
- What you eat and drink
- Whether you smoke or not
- How physically active you are
- How much stress you have – both physical and environmental
Researchers at UCSF and Kaiser Permanente studied the telomere length (DNA complexes on the end of chromosomes) in 110,000 participants. Telomeres shorten with aging and if telomeres get critically short your risk of dying increases exponentially.
This study showed 10% percent of people with the shortest telomeres had more than 20% higher risk of dying during the 3-year study than those with longer telomeres. This increased risk was about the same for those who drank 20-30 alcoholic beverages per week or smoked for 2-30 years.
So what’s the take home message?
Don’t smoke, be physically active on a daily basis, control both physical and environmental stress as much as possible and eat healthfully. Not as easy as it sounds but here’s a few tips:
- Plan your food for the week. The number one thing my clients tell me is if they are organized with their food they can execute healthy eating – this requires regular grocery shopping, taking some time each week or day to cook healthy meals to take to work or heat up after work.
- Either plan 30 minutes of a workout each day or opportunistically find 3 sets of 10 minutes per day to move your body.
- Control environmental stress and food pollutants – shop on the perimeter of the grocery store and buy foods with less ingredients and additives/preservatives. Plan to get at least 7 hours of sleep per night to help with regular daily stress and wellness in the body.
It’s surprising how few people actually are able to execute the above goals.
Reasonable lifestyle changes make a huge difference in living longer healthier lives and may be simpler than you think if planned out. The small changes will soon pay a large dividend – and may have better odds than the current stock market.
Find your routine and stick to it for at least 6 weeks. One of my clients who inspired this blog finally decided after struggling for a few years to stick to the healthy eating plan we designed for her and exercise most days of the week. She’s now at it for over 200 days and has lost 30 pounds with 10 left to go. Because she’s been consistent, slow and steady she’s winning the lifestyle race – and that’s magic for her telomeres and DNA.
And that my friends is the winning recipe.