Methylation and Testing

According to Dr. Mark Hyman, methylation is a biochemical process that occurs billions of times every second, affects just about every system in the human body and is essential for health and longevity. Methylation affects your digestion, nervous system, hormones, moods, energy and more. Some doctors, Naturopaths and researchers are starting to study our genes and how they affect our methylation.

You May Have Issues with Methylation If You Have the Following Symptoms:

  • Poor nerve function (muscle twitching, numbness, weakness)
  • Fatigue or chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Depression, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, mood disorders
  • Autoimmune issues, cancer, diabetes, thyroid issues
  • Abdominal issues – Crohn’s, IBS, digestive issues
  • Poor grown and development
  • Cholesterol issues
  • Hormone issues
  • Histamine problems
  • Difficulty detoxing
  • Chronic illness that doesn’t seem to get better, no matter what you do. Baffling, mysterious health issues that doctors can’t figure out.

Your Digestive Tract Health (Gut Health) is Key for Methylation

What’s so interesting is that gut health is such a star in methylation! One great example is the bacteria in our digestive tract. We all have a community of bacteria – both good and bad – inside our gut. They are our health team, working to get us everything we need. With today’s lifestyles – stress, lack of sleep, and especially sugar and processed foods, the good bacteria start to die off and the bad bacteria can take over.

There are Two Important Things to Keep in Mind

  • We now know from neuroscientists that this bacteria is considered “auxiliary DNA” and that they can turn on or turn off our gene expressions (also known as turning on or off symptoms). And studies are showing that over generations, these bacteria can change DNA. So they help us stay healthy way more than we previously were aware of!
  • We also know from researchers that the good and bad bacteria communicate with the brain. So if we have enough good, happy bacteria, they will send happy signals to the brain. If we have too much bad bacteria, they send messages of distress and anxiety to the brain.

The best methylation practitioners support their clients with healthy food protocols along with vitamins, minerals, lifestyle changes and even with Louise Hay’s work because the best practitioners know that changing how we think is critical to healing.

How Do You Know If You Have Gut Health Issues?

If your gut health is impaired, you may not be digesting or absorbing your food well. This can result in nutritional deficiencies that affect your body and mind.

Some symptoms of malabsorption are:

  • Abdominal pain and cramps
  • Constant cravings (especially for sugar or carbohydrates)
  • Constant hunger
  • Constipation
  • Diagnosis of parasites, fungal overgrowth or bacterial overgrowth (candida, SIBO – Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth, Clostridium difficile, etc.)
  • Diarrhea
  • Eating disorders
  • Fatigue
  • Feeling simultaneously hungry and full
  • Gas, including gas that feels trapped and painful
  • IBS
  • Joint pain
  • Low blood sugar or hypoglycemia
  • Mood issues (depression, anxiety, apathy, irritability, etc.)
  • Skin problems (acne, eczema, psoriasis, rashes, etc.)
  • Stool changes
  • Ulcers

Tests for Methylation

If you think you have issues with methylation, consider working with a doctor who is very knowledgeable about methylation or one of the more common related genetic mutations, mthfr.

Many people are getting genetic testing to do this. Talk to your doctor or health practitioner who is knowledgable about DNA testing with 23andMe or other methylation pathway tests. You will receive results showing your methylation genes and which ones could be causing symptoms.

To learn more about DNA testing or methylation pathway testing, a well-respected expert, Dr. Ben Lynch, talks about it here.

If you do get a test to identify your methylation genes, remember, genes are just a blueprint, they reveal predispositions, but having a predisposition does not mean you have or will have an illness or disease. Knowledgeable practitioners recognize that if you have a symptom related to a genetic predisposition, the gene is “expressing.” Your practitioner can work with you on a lifestyle, nutrition and supplement protocol to turn off that gene expression.

Click here to find a doctor who is knowledgeable about methylation or one of the most common methylation defects, mthfr


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As a coach, writer and recovered former executive, I understand the challenges of creating a balanced, healthy lifestyle when over-scheduled. In my journey to radiant health, I created a whole health system of eating, exercise, renewal and recharging -- a roadmap toward health & vitality. I empower clients to create their own whole health systems, in their own unique ways. I have seen amazing results in working with my clients!