It’s no debate that genetics play a crucial role in our health. Medical conditions and genetic disorders inherited from ancestors can impact your everyday health and lifespan.
With the explosion of take-at-home DNA tests, there has been a huge push to evaluate your DNA. However, there are many problems with take-at-home tests.
Tests promise results that they can’t predict. Not all take-at-home genetic testing companies provide scientifically supportable tests, and not all tests are covered by health insurance.
It can be confusing to know which test is right for you. Further, genetic counseling (professional interpretation of your DNA results) is crucial to understanding your results, yet this is often cast aside.
“Family history and genetics play an important role in our overall health, including improving health outcomes or preventing possible disease,” says Joanne Armstrong, M.D., MPH, Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Women’s Health and Genomics for CVS Health. “But the direct-to-consumer genetic testing products available today may provide inaccurate, incomplete or misleading results.”
In general, it’s best to stay away from take-at-home DNA kits. These usually prey upon your curiosity without giving you much scientific accuracy. Be wary of tests that claim to give medical answers. If possible, seek out genetic counseling upon receiving your results.
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