by Ed Barillas, Staff Writer
A reader sent in a very important question, he asked, ”Do people have control over their genes that they pass down to their offspring and can they improve them? Is it hard coded to the point where nothing you do will make a difference no matter what kind of training, nutritional diet, lifestyle etc. you live?”
Or to pose the question another way: Take a person who comes from a long line of un-athletic overweight people. If that person chooses for years to workout extremely hard, changes his nutritional diet for the better eats the right foods at the right times, stays off ALL processed foods and drinks, only drinks water, fresh homemade juices and loads of organic milk, develops a proper sleeping routine, even down to ceasing to watch television and reads highly educational books and turns out a highly intelligent mind and an incredible muscular physique, stronger metabolism and immune system, when he starts to reproduce, will his kids be more likely to have more athletic, muscular and smarter genes? Or will his kids turn out the same if he would of just sat on the couch and watched Oprah (or played video games) all day long, with little exercise other than reaching for the cell phone to order fast food and wash it down with a liter of soft drink?
Some say that the overweight and un-athletic parent will usually have overweight and un-athletic children not from genetics but from lifestyle. It has been said that healthy, active parents will have health active children. One could add that the upbringing of the children will have a lot to do with this.
The way you treat you own body will not change the outcome for your children unless you feed your children large amounts of unhealthy food, but “then that isn’t DNA or genes that’s just overfeeding” one could add, but if you take a good and solid look at all the chemicals that are in these unhealthy foods and drinks and all the harm Monsanto products do nowadays I would guarantee that it does have an effect on those poor kids genetics and their children’s children’s etc.
I would be willing to take the Pepsi challenge and take 2 kids and test them over a period of 30 years and feed one all organic foods and drinks, proper exercise and feed the other one all processed foods and drinks and no exercise and I would be very willing to conclude that the first child will turn out to be a healthier person and live a life free from illnesses, pains, aches and die at a ripe old age. As opposed to the latter child who will live a life full of pains, aches, illnesses etc. and kick the bucket at 35 from cancer. Just look around you now, overweight kids are as common and as American as apple pie now a days and sadly these kids will not be able to live to their full potential to say nothing of what offspring they produce, if any.
Remember that your body type is determined by large amounts of genes, not just one. Many have said that by working out and building a muscular physique and eating the right foods you change your natural body, but this has no affect on your genes. Your DNA should never change and many others that say that there are things called mutations where your DNA can change, but it is only a specific part of your gene that mutates.
Now the big question for me is, what stops you from being able to alter your genes? People constantly change over time right? Certain races become taller than others, or races darker, as well as other races becoming weaker and stronger than others. If their genes have gradually changed, based on lifestyle factors, why can’t everyone else’s change? Would bodybuilding indeed make a small change in a person’s gene or is it too miniscule a concept to measure over one generation? One might add that this change in the genes would have to take effect over a course of many generations abiding with the same diet and exercise lifestyle.
So DNA is hard coded but that doesn’t mean that you cannot improve your lifestyle for the betterment of your future children. There are many studies out there that contribute exercising like weightlifting and cardio to stronger sperm. It will be much easier for your partner to get pregnant if you live a healthy active lifestyle and thus produce healthy children with a better DNA factor and code. Will this make your future child better than if you were a couch potato eating junk food all day while watching TV? For the reasons others have said I think living that active healthy lifestyle would be a much better influence for your children and have a greater impact in their lives and DNA. Sadly with science being what it is today and in the future, if you want a blonde hair blue eyed handsome son who will be 6″4 and destined for greatness for a few hundred thousand bucks that will be possible.
There is a chance for their offspring In everyone’s DNA to be tall, short, dwarf, autistic, genius, fat, skinny, muscular etc. I know of someone who is a giant and both of his parents are short. Then look at the little people on TV who conceived 3 regular sized children and another one who was a little person. Sadly future science will change that, and not for the better.
You are what you eat never sounded truer.