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Can Your Diet Change Your Genes?


You can probably remember your mom saying "you are what you eat," but according to a new study from the University of Cambridge in England, she may have actually been onto something.

While you've probably known that your genes influence your metabolism (read: why your effortlessly skinny friend can down a double burger and fries like it's NBD, and others need to stress over ever calorie), the new Nature Microbiology study suggests that your diet may actually affect your genes. (Psst...We have 11 Easy Ways to Rev Up Your Metabolism.)

The study was conducted in yeast (which sounds weird but is actually a pretty efficient way for scientists to look at some of the human body's fundamental processes). The researchers altered the levels of important metabolites (substances the body produces during processes like digestion), then looked at different genes. As it turns out, nine out of the ten genes they looked at were affected. When good stuff went into the yeast's system, the genes did better work. When the metabolic system had poor inputs to work with, the genes weren't as healthy. 

The traditional view has been that your genes control your ability to process nutrients, which is true. But this research shows that the process may also work the other way, making it even more important to load up on healthy foods and cut back on the bad ones. The better the stuff you put in your body, the better your body can function. Makes sense, right? We suggest these 8 Healthy Foods You Should Eat Every Day.



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