Nutrigenetics, Nutrigenomics and the Global Obesity Crisis


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The future of Nutrigenetics & Nutrigenomics: Biomarker evolution. Image courtesy of Maria Koziołkiewicz

Although nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics hold immense promise for the prevention of chronic disease and obesity, we are advised not to put away our running shoes.  An expert in the field provided Decoded Science with her private opinion that “…a nutrigenomic ‘pill’ instead of physical activity is a fantasy.”

Decoded Science recently interviewed Professor Maria Koziolkiewicz, PhD, Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Services and lecturer on genetics and microbiology at the Technical University of Lodz (Poland). Professor Koziolkiewicz presented  “Nutrigenomics and Nutrigenetics – are they the keys for healthy nutrition?” at the conference on “Food and nutrition in the 21st century,” in Warsaw, Poland, September 8-9, 2011.

Can Nutrigenetics and Nutrigenomics Resolve the Global Obesity Crisis?

Decoded Science asked Professor Koziolkiewicz for her opinion on this topic, and she responded:

In my opinion, in the case of adult persons suffering from obesity, it is too late to apply results of nutrigenomic studies and to help them. We have to remember that nutrigenomic studies are in the preliminary step of their development and there is still a long way to go before dietary recommendations based on results of these studies will be elaborated. But I do hope that in the case of children or young people who will have their own children in the future, studies in nutrigenomics will give some positive effects.”

 With regard to the day in which nutrigenetics will begin producing the “personalized diet,” Decoded Science asked Professor Koziolkiewicz to comment on the role of functional nutrigenetics in maintaining a normal life span as the human race becomes ever more sedentary. Ms Koziolkiewicz expressed her views on the subject:

“I think that a development in the field of nutrigenomics will give at some point in future a chance for some of the population of ‘sedentary human beings ‘ to maintain [a] normal healthy life span. But because of genetic diversity, a lot of people will not been “diagnosed’ properly in terms of their nutritional requirements which will have to be fulfilled for “normal” life of these people.

On the other hand, physical activity should be considered as a kind of therapy for many people, not only now but also in the future.”

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