Epigenetics: The New Paradigm

DNA associates with histone proteins to form chromatin. Translation: You are in charge of your physical destiny.

You know the nature vs. nurture debate. And, until recently, nature seemed to be winning. That is to say, the dominant paradigm suggested that our health or illness was largely a function of our DNA. You got cancer? You must have been genetically predisposed. Uncle had a heart attack? It runs in the family. You get the idea.

In fact, the much-ballyhooed Human Genome Project was supposed to pave the way for any number of magic bullet treatments to correct our defective genes which, purportedly, were the source of our ills.

Enter the new paradigm, epigenetics: “the study of heritable changes in gene expression or cellular phenotype caused by mechanisms other than changes in the underlying DNA sequence.” (There’s a great epigenics page on Wikipedia.)

In plain speak, this means our genes can express themselves in various ways, depending on the environment. And environment is another way of saying nurture. That means we can shape our health depending on our lifestyle.

So, how do we nurture our genes to achieve optimal health? Through things like proper nutrition, sleep, exercise and a low-stress lifestyle. More specifically, a recent article in Natural Health Dossier offers five ways to avoid cancer.

What this means is that nurture can go a long way toward achieving your health goals. Though there are many ways we can all love our bodies, we’re all unique. So, the diet or exercise that’s best for me may not be what’s best for you.

The trick is determining – and adopting — a lifestyle that’s sustainable (ideally a lifestyle you love) while creating vibrant health for you and the planet. At Greenelixer that’s the game we’re playing: vibrant health for people and the planet. We humbly invite you to play that game with us.

2 thoughts on “Epigenetics: The New Paradigm

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