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Are DNA tests useful in personalized lifestyle holidays?

Recently the New York Times reported that the FDA got involved in “regulating consumer genetics”. This might be useful to ensure the value of DNA tests in a positive outcome.

It is on this last point that I hope to enlighten readers. In this case, a positive outcome implies that the client is able to minimise his health risks by aligning his lifestyle as closely as possible to his DNA risk profile.

The problem with consumer genetics (buying your test over the counter / internet) is thus that you have the information, but might not apply it, and thus have no guarantees that it will ensure any lasting lifestyle change.

A DNA test is only meaningful when it is used to prevent cumulative risk and can be used to formulate an individualised treatment plan. Blueprint Health incorporates DNA tests as part of our luxury health and wellness holidays in the Western Cape, South Africa because we know genetic information is of more value to plan health interventions rather than as a tool to diagnose disease.

Knowing which genes put you at risk, allows for pro-active planning of a healthy lifestyle that can “switch off” gene effect. During your stay, a physician-lead team will design your unique health plan to empower you to target your health risks –a truly individualized health plan. Such “personalized medicine” allows our clients to benefit from long-lasting, practical health guidelines for every-day life.

These 7-day retreats are designed and implemented around a DNA test to identify future health risks. Work-life balance, burnout, high performance, lifestyle diseases and inherited health risks are all issues that are dealt with in these ultimate lifestyle holidays.

The test combination and professional services will be determined by the choice of package, be it the “Love my Heart”, “Defy Age” , “Life in Balance” or “Beat cancer” options.

These wellness packages are designed to coalesce with the timeless magic of Africa and are offered at 3 luxury destinations in the Western Cape. Each destination has its own magic, and the theme is selected to tie in with the unique natural environment – and to what suits your mood and the space you are in.

These packages are naturally well-suited to meet your executive health needs. Also it can be used as incentive travel for corporate groups – ideal to maintain your highly functioning human capital.

Dr Heliose Avenant – 7 September 2010