Is your family’s medical history writing your future?

Preventive healthcare

By pH health care professionals

You are the product of your mother and father. That fact becomes clearer with each new genetic discovery. Very specific genetic testing can determine whether your blood is likely to clot and cause a heart attack, whether you are likely to have diabetes, and whether you are at risk for dementia or schizophrenia.

Genes don’t have to be the final sentence in all cases, though. The most empowering aspect of genetic testing is the options it gives us to be proactive about the rest of our lives. Already, many women with the BRCA mutation have had breast or ovary removal surgery to ensure that they will never die of a deadly gynecologic cancer. People with a predisposition to high cholesterol are taking statin drugs at the age of 25. Descendants of diabetics are giving up sugar and exercising more.

Practical considerations help us to offset family history, too. Maybe your mother had skin cancer; our knowledge about SPF in this generation means you don’t necessarily have to.

Even difficult illnesses like psychiatric conditions can be prevented in some instances. Careful nurturing of emotional health can potentially prevent the onset of depression or schizophrenia in young adulthood. On the flip side, children who have been abused and have these types of genes are more likely to suffer from mental illness. So, parents who know that they have these genes can spend extra time teaching their kids socialization and stress management, and expressing reassurance and kindness.

Be proactive. Tell a doctor about any medical conditions in your family, even ones that seem “unimportant” like thyroid disease or arthritis. They are important. Your doctor can come up with a plan to test your genetic tendencies and help you to make informed choices.

Enjoy Your Healthy Life!

The pH professional health care team includes recognized experts from a variety of health care and related disciplines, including physicians, attorneys, nutritionists, nurses and certified fitness instructors. This team also includes the members of the pH Medical Advisory Board, which constantly monitors all pH programs, products and services. To learn more about the pH Medical Advisory Board, click here.