DNA Testing Used for Weight Loss

Genetics are helping scientists and doctors understand more about human body

There's an infinite number of diets and workouts out there to help you lose weight, but now there's a genetic test available that can find out which diet might work best for your body.

Genetic testing is helping scientists and doctors understand more about human body, especially when it comes to weight loss. It’s helping patients find out the best way to lose weight and keep it off.

At 5-foot-4-inches and weighing more than 300 pounds, Kourtney Kennedy was morbidly obese and said she had been losing and gaining the same hundred pounds for years.

After having surgery and losing 150 pounds, she's using the genetic testing to figure out how to get to her goal weight of 120.

Her genetic test showed her that her low-carbohydrate diet would not be as effective as a low fat diet. Her weight training workout wouldn't get her body fat down as much as an endurance workout.

“I always thought low carb was the way to go and they're telling me no, you have it all wrong,” she said. “Your body does best with low fat.”

In the past 3 months she's reduced her body fat 4 percent.

“So by changing the way I ate, and by changing the way I exercise based on this new knowledge I gained,” Kennedy said. “I'm no longer pre-diabetic, and I'm a little bit lighter.”

Her doctor, Sunil Bhoyrul, says it's an innovative breakthrough that allows doctors and patients to understand how their bodies react to different foods, exercises and even what foods patients are more inclined to eat.

The product they used is called Pathway Fit by San Diego company Pathway Genomics.  The company also analyzes the results.

“Sometimes the genetic test can even tell us behavioral tendencies,” he said. “There's a gene believe it or not for excess snacking. There’s a gene for excess sweating. There's a gene for drawing me constantly to this cup of coffee right here.”

But Bhoyrul said this isn't a quick fix. People will still have to diet and exercise, but the hope is that the effort will maximize results.

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