In recent years, a movement called ‘Quantified Self‘ has been gaining ground. The idea is to use all kinds of available technology- including the latest science and medical advancements- to track and measure all the factors that lead to optimal health – know as ‘biohacking.’ Unsurprisingly the movement has its origins in Silicon Valley: ambitious, workaholic type A CEOs looking to enhance their physical and mental health in order to perform at their absolute best. But for us regular folk who don’t have access to USD 200K to upgrade our lives, how do we proceed? What tests and trackers are really worth investing in?
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Quantified Self: Information Overload
There is so much out there when it comes to what you should be testing, and the number of things to test. What can you track, test and measure? Your heart rate, your food intolerances & allergies, your sleep quality, your weight reps & steps walked, your fasting blood sugar and insulin, your vitamin levels, your calories consumed, your macro nutrient profile, your cholesterol, your lipid profile, your periods…How can you track these things? With wearables like Fitbit, Jawbone, Heart, Apple Watch or Heart Rate Monitor or apps like My Fitness Pal, Clue, Nike+, Sleep Cycle, Map My Run… How can you measure results aka your body’s response? With diagnostic testing like allergy skin patches, food intolerance blood work, finger prick analysis, GI Maps for Gut Health, vitamin panels, DNA testing, DEXA scanning…It’s a lot. A lot of time, a lot of money. And sad to say, it’s mostly useless, especially if you don’t know what it means or how to use it.
DNA Testing: A Key Part Of The Quantified Self Puzzle
Before embarking on your Quantified Self journey, it’s crucial to understand what your health objectives are and what data points matter to help you achieve them. Turns out that most people’s health objectives are pretty similar. The whole data tracking industry has exploded in recent years because the majority of us are looking to 1) improve our body composition, 2) optimize our diet and nutrition 3) train smarter. And that’s why DNA testing is one of the most important investments you can make in your health. It hits multiple areas with one test only – informing your ideal diet and training patterns. Your DNA affects your nutrigenetic profile, aka how your body uses and breaks down common dietary components, your ability to eliminate toxins and your response to various types of exercise (power vs. endurance). Why invest time and energy in long bouts of cardio if you are a power responder? Why work out every day if your body requires a longer recovery phase? Why avoid salts and carbs at all costs if your body is not sensitive to them? The unique benefit of a DNA test is knowing clearly your body’s response to types of activity and food consumption, so you know what is worth tracking, and what is simply worth ignoring.
DNAFit: Scientific Credentials That Matter
Recently awarded one of Fast Company’s most innovative companies in data science, DNAFit has a long history working with Olympic athletes and thousands of elite sportspeople, teams and consumers from Olympic track athlete Jenny Meadows to rugby champion Bryan Habana, both of whom credit DNAFit with materially improving their performance. DNAFit has helped even more regular consumers, who have a greater aesthetics than pure athletics. Not all DNA tests are created equal, as DNAFit offers the most scientific credibility across their industry with countless peer reviewed studies depicting the relevance of gene-matched training for physical performance: about 260% better results within same time period when training matched to genes (for relatively untrained cohorts) and the power of gene-matched diets for long-term weight management (including fat loss, not just weight loss): nutri-genetically tailored diets resulted in better compliance, longer-term BMI reduction and improvements in blood glucose levels. In case we haven’t been clear enough: your diet and your training regimen are paramount and DNAFit a necessary tool to discover or verify the optimal diet and training regimen for you. DNAFit establishes your body’s response for accelerated training (finding out which workout mode is most effective for your body type in relation to your goals) and diet (linking nutritional requirements with your health purpose- increased energy, bulking up, shredding, or long-term health). With DNAFit reports you have a basis for self-tracking and quantifying your progress.
The Upgraded DNAFit
DNAFit offers the opportunity for you to discover how your genes influence the way you should be training and eating – and with this insight, gives you the confidence and personalization to take control of your life to set goals and smash them. DNAFit offers useful information for healthy people seeking practical information they can take action on daily. Their easy-to-navigate reports and functional training guidelines give those seeking improved body composition and enhanced athletic performance relevant data they can use for faster and more targeted improvements. The company is committed to reaching as many people as possible with their groundbreaking test. DNAFit now offers two tiers: the affordable HKD 3,500 option that includes the saliva test and core reports; and the premium improved consultation package involving goal-specific training objectives and ongoing follow-up (e.g. marathon training or pure fat loss). The full consultation service is set at HKD 6,000- currently only HKD 4,200 for Green Queen readers, use code ‘GQ2017.’
Conclusion: Thanks to DNAFit, you can know exactly how your body responds to your genetic potential and you can adjust your training methods and eating habits to reach your fitness and nutrition goals in the most efficient, Quantified Self-friendly way.
For a more in-depth look at the specifics of DNAFit test results, see Green Queen founder Sonalie Figueiras’ review here.
Images courtesy of Pexels (lead), DNAFit and chevanon/Freepik.