The risk of developing cancer or thrombosis, the likelihood of metabolic disorders, and even nutritional and exercise predispositions. Our genes hold a lot of important and useful information. Should we seek it, and if so, when? How can we do this what determines whether the results will be reliable? Who, in particular, should consider undergoing genetic tests, and how should this information be used?
Genetic tests can be important in cancer prevention
In the case of inheritance, BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations are most often responsible for breast cancer, contributing to between 5 and 10 percent of cancer cases. Having the BRCA1 gene mutation means as much as 80 percent risk of developing breast cancer, while in the case of the BRCA2 gene - it is 30-55 percent. The most important thing is that thanks to awareness of an increased risk of disease, additional preventive measures can be taken, in effect increasing the chances of detecting cancer at an early stage,
says Dr Anna Plucik-Mrożek, specialist in internal medicine at Medicover Poland.
Who should consider undergoing genetic tests?
The higher risk group also includes women who have previously had breast or ovarian cancer, and those whose family members have had melanoma, prostate or laryngeal cancer, as well as those who were diagnosed with benign tumours in the breasts or ovaries, e.g. cysts, and those undergoing hormone replacement therapy,
explains Dr Anna Plucik-Mrożek.
Our genes are a valuable source of information about predispositions to many diseases
This type of test should be considered by those who are taking oral contraceptives, are pregnant or are planning pregnancy, as well as those who have had thrombosis in the past or have varicose veins. The increased risk group also includes those who have family members with the disease, as well as those leading a sedentary lifestyle,
the expert explains.
Genetic testing to support a healthy lifestyle
The genetic code affects the feeling of satiety or lack of it, the presence of the yo-yo effect, or the body's response to saturated, unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and carbohydrates. Research shows, for example, that people with an unfavourable variant of the APOA2 gene gain weight faster than others due to saturated fat. If they consume too much of it, their risk of becoming overweight is doubled, in comparison to the carriers of the universal genetic variant,
says an expert from Medicover Polska.