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Genetic Test Determines Best Diet Type

Would You Pay For a Genetic Test If It Helped You Lose Weight?

A closer look at your genes may determine what type of diet is best for you — at least that's what Interleukin Genetics is hoping. The company has developed a genetic test that tells researchers if an individual will lose more weight on a lowfat or low-carb diet.

Researchers randomly assigned one of four diets — Atkins, Ornish, LEARN, or Zone  —  to a group of 140 overweight and obese American women. After a year's time they then compared the genetic makeup of the women to their assigned diets to see if those on diets that were better matched to their genetics lost more weight. The study showed that participants who were on better matched diets lost about five times more weight than those on diets that were not as good a genetic match. Researchers say the $149 test works by looking for mutations in three genes. The mutations affect the amount of fat the body absorbs or how the body metabolizes sugar. Sixteen percent of individuals will have a combination of both mutations.

I'm not quite sure if I'm buying it though, at least not yet. The study group seems really small, and overall, neither group lost that much weight. It makes me think that the diets may not have been closely monitored, or that diets simply don't work. Since the company is planning to broaden its study, I'll be keeping my eyes open for any new developments.

In the meantime . . .

Image Source: Getty
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