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Last week I shared my ancestry with you here. This week, as promised, I am sharing some of the results of my health.

23 and me stresses “that It’s important to note that these reports show your results for specific genetic variants that are associated with a higher risk for developing certain health conditions. However, these reports cannot tell you whether you definitely will, or will not, develop the condition. Note that there are other genetic variants linked to these conditions that are not covered by these reports. Environmental and lifestyle factors can also contribute to these conditions.”

So without further ado, let’s get to it!

Genetic Risk Factors

Celiac Disease

This report covers a genetic risk factor called HLA-DQ2.5 that is found in over 90% of people with celiac disease. Since only about three percent of people with this risk factor develop celiac disease, having this factor does not necessarily mean you will develop the condition. Similarly, you can still develop celiac disease even if you don’t have this risk factor. Additional genetic risk factors may also influence a person’s risk for celiac disease, but are not reported here.

So it seems I have higher odds of developing Celiac Disease, but so far so good. The good news is that I do not have the mutations that would give me a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s or Breast or Ovarian Cancer. Having said that, it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t get those diseases at some point, I just don’t have a higher than typical risk in my genetic makeup.

Inherited Conditions

MCAD Deficiency


MCAD deficiency is inherited recessively, so individuals must receive an ACADM mutation from each parent to be affected with the disease. Many mutations in the ACADM gene have been identified. 23andMe reports on five mutations, one of which accounts for about 70 percent of mutations found in affected individuals. For people with the disease, certain environmental triggers—including common diseases that increase the body’s energy requirements or decrease appetite—can bring on acute episodes. Keep in mind that it is possible to have another mutation that causes this condition that is not included in this report.

This doesn’t seem to be a high risk for me either. However, if Michaela’s dad has an ACADM mutation in a gene, it could be a higher risk for Michaela.


Here is a quick glimpse of some of my traits

I do have blond hair even though it indicates only a 53% chance and I’m thrilled to discover that my earwax type is wet – whatever that means! Some of these reports weren’t exactly right but as with the hair colour, they are stated in percentages and with eye colour, for instance, the report says that if my eyes are not brown, they are more likely to be blue than green and they are indeed blue!

I also learned that I probably drink more coffee than most, which I do and also that I metabolize caffeine quicker than others. I am probably not lactose intolerant as is typical with most Europeans, which is also true of me. And I have no resistance to Malaria – good to know!

What I found really fascinating was this Alcohol Flush Reaction report.

Alcohol Flush Reaction

Sensitivity to alcohol— the alcohol flush reaction—depends almost entirely on a person’s genotype at two genes, ALDH2 and ADH1B. 23andMe currently reports your genotype at a SNP in ALDH2. It is possible that those with the AG or GG genotypes at the SNP are more sensitive to alcohol due to their genotype at ADH1B (which 23andMe does not report).

If I read the entire report correctly, the lower your flush reaction, the higher the chance of alcohol dependency is. Interesting to note is that on both sides of my family, relatives did struggle with alcoholism.

When I got my health results, I had to confirm that I actually wanted to read them by clicking a box giving 23 and me permission to share them with me. And then I had to choose to unlock the results that addressed Alzheimer’s and Breast and Ovarian Cancer. I guess some folks would rather not know.

Although my genetic health overview and traits are somewhat interesting to me, I have to admit that I’m way more interested in my ancestry and potentially learning about relatives I did not know I have.


If you sent away for your DNA results, would you want to read your health and traits results?

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