Personalised Nutrition Based on your DNA

Personalised Nutrition Based on your DNA

Nutrigenomics is a fascinating new field of science which takes epigenetics to a whole new level. The idea behind nutrigenomics explores the relationship between nutrition, genetics and the impact on our health.  This will not only improve a person’s overall health and quality of life, but more importantly, help prevent diseases such as diabetes, cancers, obesity and heart disease.  With this information in mind, we can use a personalised diet plan to reprogram our genetic responses to help us lose weight, prevent disease and age well. This is such exciting stuff and I truly believe that this is the way forward in the future of nutritional science.

In simple terms, nutrigenomics helps us understand why two people, with exactly the same diets and lifestyles can have vastly different responses to food.


One may continue to gain weight, while the other remains as slim as ever. Or one might develop cancer and the other doesn’t. There is no ‘one size fits’ all diet because everyone responds differently to various foods and nutrients based on their genetics.


So what are genes? Genes are a set of instructions passed on from our parents. They determine how different we are to one another and include visible traits such as hair colour as well as invisible traits such as blood type and susceptibility to certain diseases.


How nutrients affect the way our genes are expressed in our own bodies – A prime example of this is the appearance of our skin and how quickly it ages. Someone with a poor diet, deficient in essential nutrients can negatively influence the way their genes are expressed. As a result, they may present with dry, dull looking skin, with in premature ageing. On the flip side, someone with a well balanced, nutrient rich diet will have a positive affect on their gene expression, and have beautiful glowing skin that ages gracefully. When these genes are passed down from parents, their children will be likely to have the same kind of skin, provided they consume the same type of diet and are exposed to the same environment.


How our genes affect the way our bodies react to foods and nutrients – This is how our genes respond to certain foods, such as food intolerances or allergies. For example, people who are lactose intolerant cannot digest lactose because the gene responsible for making the digestive enzyme (lactase) is ”turned off”. Therefore, when they do eat dairy, they suffer from nausea, stomach pains, diarrhoea as their bodies are struggling to break it down and digest it.


So what’s your genotype? According to Dr. Peter D’Adamo, author of the The Genotype Diet, there are six genotypes. The Hunter, Gatherer, Explorer, Nomad, Teacher and the Warrior. Each genotype has it’s own evolutionary story, physical strengths and weaknesses and own nutritional requirements. To find out your genotype, you can get a DNA test by your health practitioner. However this is usually very expensive. Thankfully, if you know your blood type, there are a few other physical traits you can use to determine which of the six genotypes you are.





The Hunter

Hunters are tall and lean with an ectomorph body type. They have an abundance of intense energy that slows down with age. When stressed out, Hunters require an adequate diet or they tend to crash and burn. They have a fast metabolism and have the ability to eat to their heart’s content without gaining weight. Health risks associated with the Hunter genotype include allergies, depression, joint problems, asthma and digestive issues.

  • Always blood type O
  • Both sides of the body are symmetrical
  • Ring fingers are often longer than index fingers
  • White lines on their finger prints
  • Ectomorphic body type

Diet recommendations

Hunters need foods to heal their digestive tracts, reduce inflammation and help them cope with stress. They should avoid refined vegetable oils, processed sugars and grains and all gluten products are they can cause inflammation and damage the lining of the gut.



The Warrior

 Warriors are physically beautiful in their youth and tend to age early without the right diet and lifestyle. They recover well from illness, however, too much stress compromises their immune system and can increase blood pressure. Health risks associated with Warriors include hormonal imbalances, insulin resistance and obesity ( in later life), digestive problems, circulatory problems and high blood pressure.

  • Blood type A or AB
  • Usually Rh positive
  • Tendency for their skin to blush easily when nervous or stressed
  • Legs longer than torso
  • Lean in youth, pear or apple later in life

Diet recommendations

Warriors thrive on a plant-based, low carbohydrate diet. Foods such as flaxseed and sesame seeds are great to help fight inflammation and balance out hormones. Antioxidant rich foods help to fight the signs of ageing and protect the lining of the blood vessels, assisting in blood circulation.  Foods to avoid include processed carbohydrates which cause blood sugar and insulin spikes. Red meat and trans fats should also be avoided as they may cause inflammation in the blood vessels.



The Explorer 

 Explorers are intelligent, adventurous and great problem solvers. They have good physical stamina and age well. However, without the right diet, they but can be prone to hormonal imbalances and food allergies. Explorers are sensitive to fragrance, caffeine and medications. Proper liver detoxification is important to help eliminate toxins from the body. With the right diet, Explorers tend to suffer from very few health problems. Health risks associated with Explorers include anaemia, type 1 diabetes, breast cancer, liver problems and blood irregularities.

  • Can be any ABO blood type.
  • Often Rh negative
  • They are usually left-handed or ambidextrous
  • Asymmetrical fingerprint patterns
  • Mesomorphic body type
  • Torso usually longer than their legs

Diet recommendations

Alkalising foods such as leafy green vegetables, lemons and limes help to nourish the blood and assist the liver in detoxification. Iron rich foods such as red meat are also important to help prevent anaemia. Refined grains, sugar and dairy can have negative health effects on the digestive system and immunity. Consuming foods high in Omega 3s are important to help fight inflammation in the body and assist in brain function.



The Teacher

Teachers are strong with a great stamina and ability to do the physical work of 2-3 people. They tend to be of average height, with torsos and legs of equal length. Provided they live a healthy lifestyle and eat foods specific for their genotype, teachers will live a long, healthy life. Teachers have sensitive digestive systems and can be prone to digestive issues if they consume foods which can damage the lining of the gut.

  • Usually blood type A, occasionally AB
  • Rh positive
  • Good immune system
  • Short to average height
  • Muscular body type

Diet recommendations

Teachers do well on plant-based or vegetarian diets. It is important to eat foods to help produce good bacteria in the gut such as probiotics and fermented foods. Foods to avoid include processed sugar and refined carbohydrates as these affect gut flora and can compromise the immunity. Refined vegetable oils such as canola and soya bean oil should also be avoided due to their high omega 6 content, which causes inflammation in the body.



The Gatherer

Gatherers often experience metabolic challenges and are an endomorph body type, even if they are of a healthy weight. They can be vulnerable to storing excess energy as body fat due to their survival mechanism. Gatherers are highly motivated, great problem solvers and tend to age very well. When properly nourished, Gatherers are a picture of health. Health risks associated with Gatherers include Alzheimer’s disease, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, insulin resistance, hypothyroidism and depression

  • Blood type B or O
  • Usually Rh positive
  • Endomorphic body type
  • Tend to have a high BMI
  • Index fingers are longer than their ring fingers
  • Lower leg is shorter than their upper leg
  • Good fertility

Diet recommendations

 Gatherers thrive on a high protein, low carbohydrate diet. Protein rich foods help build muscle mass which help speed up the metabolism. It is important to incorporate cleansing foods such as leafy green vegetables and apple cider vinegar to help eliminate toxins from the body. Refined grains and sugars should be avoided as they cause blood sugar spikes and increase insulin resistance.



The Nomad

Nomads can fatigue easily and are sensitive to the environment. They can be susceptible to digestive issues, particularly gluten intolerances. However, with the right diet and lifestyle, Nomads have the ability to fight off illness, manage stress and age gracefully. Health risks associated with Nomads include neuromuscular diseases and viral conditions such as warts or parasites.

  • Blood type B or AB
  • Rh positive
  • White lines on fingerprints
  • Both sides of the body are symmetrical
  • Can be extremely tall or extremely short
  • Legs longer than torso
  • Often red-headed with green eyes

Diet recommendations

Following a diet high in grass-fed meat and plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables help to reprogram their thrifty genes and fight the signs of ageing. Lines on fingerprints are common amongst Nomads are signs of a compromised gut lining. Incorporating fermented foods and probiotics help heal the gut. Beetroot is particularly good for Nomads such to the high nitric acid content which helps improves the metabolism. Gluten should definitely be avoided.


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