Doctor’s Review: The 21st-century diet

August 17, 2012

The next phase in diet therapy has hit Canada. Research has pinpointed some of the genes that interact with nutrients which, in turn, impact heart disease, diabetes and other degenerative diseases.


The NOS3 gene regulates the production of the enzyme nitric oxide synthase for the production of nitric oxide. People with one of two variations in the gene are at greater risk for having high triglyceride levels when consuming a diet low in omega-3 fats.


The CYP1A2 enzyme metabolizes caffeine in the liver. Variances in the gene can cause variations in the activity of the enzyme. Metabolizing caffeine at a slower rate seems to be associated with an increased risk of heart attack, even when caffeine intake is within four cups of coffee daily.


The GSTT1 gene produces a protein from the glutathione S-transferase enzyme family, which plays a role in the utilization of deficiency when they don’t meet the RDA for vitamin C.


The MTHFR gene produces methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase, an enzyme that plays an important role in the way the body uses folic acid. People with a variant of this gene are at greater risk for folate deficiency when folate intake is low.


The TCF7L2 gene produces transcription factor 7- like 2, which affects how the body turns on or off some other genes. People with one of two variants of TCF7L2 have a 67 percent increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


APOA2 directs the body to produce apolipoprotein A-II. This protein plays an important role in the body’s ability to utilize different types of fat. People with one variant of this gene are at a greater risk for becoming obese when they consume a diet high in saturated fats.


The ACE gene regulates the production of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE). People with one of two variants of this gene have a 230 percent increased risk of having high blood pressure when their sodium intake is high.
So how do we know if our patients have variants of these genes? Nutrigenomix, a University of Toronto spin-off biotechnology company spearheaded by Dr Ahmed El-Sohemy, Canada Research Chair in Nutrigenomics and an Associate Professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the U of T, has developed a genetic test kit that will be available through dietitians offices beginning this month. For info:

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.

Original Post Darte: Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Author: Kim N. Arrey

Original Article: