Why a DNA test is the best tool to help you understand your health

Gone are the days where you’re tempted to follow every new diet and fitness craze on the wellness scene - just because you think it might help you lose weight or get fit in a hurry.

Thanks to personalised healthcare and specific DNA tests offered by genetic testing laboratories such as DNAlysis Biotechnology, you can take responsibility for your health and find out exactly what works for you!

I’m a huge fan of DNA tests – because each one I’ve had, has revealed everything I need to know about my unique body, so that I can make informed decisions, rather than feeling overwhelmed or confused with all the consumer information we’re bombarded with daily.

What can your DNA reveal?

Customised DNA tests can tell you a lot about your health including; 
  • Your chronic disease risks
  • Your mental health status and risks for certain mental disorders such as depression
  • Your sensitivity to certain medications
  • Your athletic abilities, as well as the type of exercise you should be doing
  • Which diet plan would be best for you, including how to manage cravings, lose weight etc. 
  • How to best take care of your skin and prevent the signs of ageing
  • And much more…
I recently sat down with the founder of DNAlysis Biotechnology, Dr Daniel Meyersfeld to chat about the many benefits DNA testing has to offer, not just for me, but for my clients too.


Watch the video here: 


In a nutshell, I’ve sat with many men and women who have been on strict diets or rigorous exercise regimes and still haven’t gotten the results they’re after. Why? Because what works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for another, and this is where the magic of personalised healthcare comes in. It takes the guesswork out of trying to figure out what will work for you – because your DNA doesn’t lie.

DNA tests are designed to help you understand your weaknesses, know how you should be eating, and what training you should be doing for optimal results. For instance, endurance-type training doesn’t suit everyone. I for instance, am prone to inflammation and stiffness after high intensity training, which is why rebounding works so well for me. It’s low impact yet gets your heart rate up and improves your cardiovascular fitness without being too jarring on your joints and muscles.

And when it comes to your diet, there’s no ‘one size fits all approach. For some people, high-fat, or high protein, low-carb diets are a bad choice. But how would you know this if you didn’t have specific genetic variations tested?

As I mentioned in the video, I honestly believe that DNA testing is something you should do when you’re 18 so that you can take control and responsibility for your overall health and wellbeing from a young age. This includes managing your risk for certain chronic health conditions such as Type 2 Diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, etc. as well as taking steps to prevent obesity and manage your mental health.


Dr Meyersfeld and I both agree that when it comes to your health, prevention is always better than cure. “What is important to understand is, what your genes may predispose you to in combination with environmental factors, and how to manage this,” he says.

How the tests work

Tests are available through the DNAlysis network of accredited healthcare practitioners. All you need to do is make an appointment with your practitioner, have the test done, and wait for your results. Your practitioner will go through your results with you in a very comprehensive report.
  • Step 1 You must avoid drinking or eating for an hour before giving your swab sample.
  • Step 2 Use the swab sample kit to take a cheek swab (The swab must be from the inside of your cheek). 
  • Step 3 A courier service will collect your sample and deliver it to the DNAlysis Biotechnology lab where they will use the DNA sample to analyse your unique genetic variations. 
  • Step 4 Your practitioner will call you to arrange a meeting (one-on-one or telephonically) to go through your results.

The DNA tests I’ve had done so far (Yep, I’ve had a few!)

Test: DNA Diet

What it revealed: My body will respond the best to a low carbohydrate, low fat diet with moderate amounts of protein. I also have a serious sweet tooth and am sensitive to caffeine, which I already knew!

Test: DNA Sport

What it revealed: It seems like I have an advantage for endurance performance. According to my genetic profile, my body will respond well to low to moderate types of exercise such as running for long periods of time. Interestingly, I also seem to have strong power genes and fast twitch muscle fibres which allow me to manage well with HIIT workouts, for instance.

Test: DNA Mind

What it revealed: While my genetics showed no increased risk for addictive behaviours – such as binge eating, smoking or alcohol dependency, some results did show a slightly increased risk for depression and anxiety, as well as a moderate risk for inflammation. This might be why I suffered from mild postpartum depression after having my daughter, Bella.

Test: Medcheck

What it revealed: I have certain genetic variations that make me sensitive to warfarin- the common blood thinner. So, if I’m ever in a situation where I need to take it, the doctors will know to adjust my dose accordingly. I’m also slightly sensitive to pain medications known as opioids, so if I ever have to have major surgery, the doctors will need to adjust my pain medication accordingly.

NOTE: When I had this pharmacological test done, it was called MyGeneRx. It’s since been changed to MedCheck and covers everything from how your body might respond to cardiovascular medications such as statins, to pain medications, antidepressants and medications such as Tamoxifen.
For more information on DNAlysis, visit www.dnalysis.co.za