DNAfit Review: A DNA Test for Weight Loss?


Sometime after writing a 23andme vs AncestryDNA review, DNAfit reached out to me and asked if I’d also like to write a DNAfit review. Being a mom of four who still has a wee bit of postpartum fluff as I like to call it a whooping three years later, the idea of a DNA test that focuses on helping folks tailor their diet and exercise regimes around their DNA definitely seemed interesting. I’d already had some luck with weight loss after finding out I was likely to respond better to HIIT exercise via my Promethease health report. So, I said yes.

I want to disclose upfront that DNAfit’s invitation did include a free report using my results from 23andme.  I was not paid for this review, but I didn’t pay for the product either. That out of the way, let’s get started…

What is DNAfit?

A mentioned above, DNA fit offers DNA testing to determine genetic factors that may contribute to your success while dieting or exercising. Testing is via Helix labs, though you can also use AncestryDNA or 23andme raw DNA to receive reports at a slightly lower price.

They offer two tests, the DNAfit Diet Pro and DNAfit Diet Fitness Pro 360. Below you’ll find a comparison table of the two, but basically the biggest difference is that with the Diet Pro report you only get diet/food related information, while with the Diet Fitness 360 you also get information on exercise/fitness. You can also use my referral link to receive a 20 percent discount should you chose to try DNAfit. The prices in the comparison below don’t factor in this discount.

dntafit review

Nutrition Reports:

These are included in both products. There are 11 in total.  All of the reports mentioned here have the same layout. You’ll see a brief explanation of the report itself (what it tested, etc.), a section explaining what the report can and can’t tell you, your result, how that result was calculated, and any recommendations made based on that result. I won’t post screenshots of every result I received, because that would make for an excessively long DNAfit review. Instead I’ll just include shots of one report along with the summary provided.

-Carbohydrate Sensitivity

Ranging from “very low” to “very high,” this report shows how well your body processes carbohydrates. This can factor into how likely you are to gain weight or develop insulin resistance from high carb intake.

Here’s a screenshot of the area that shows you what the report can and can’t tell you. Each area is a simple pull down.

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Here’s an example of the results area where it explains your results and what they mean.

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Followed by what was used to determine that result.

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And finally here’s where they give a recommendation based on all of the above.

dnafit rerview

-Saturated Fat Sensitivity

Much like the carb sensitivity report, this shows you predisposition to gain weight or suffer health issues as a result of high saturated fat intake. It also offers recommendations on how much saturated fat you should consume based on your genes.

-Detoxification Ability: Risk of DNA damage from Smoked/Char-grilled Meats

This one I thought was kind of a weird report to get. It’s based on your genetic ability to process certain chemicals that are produced when meat is smoked or char-grilled. Mainly, I suppose labeling that as “detoxification ability” seemed odd to me as that’s not what most people think of when they read detox. Either way, you’ll get a result of either “normal” or “raised risk” along with a recommendation on how to prepare meat for your meals based on this.

-Antioxidant Need:

Based on your genetic ability to process free radicals, this report tells you whether or not you have a “normal” need for antioxidants or “raised” meaning you should consume more antioxidants than most.

The next three reports are about the same as the antioxidant report, but are for Omega 3; Vitamin B and Folate; and Vitamin D.

-Alcohol Sensitivity:

This tells you whether you metabolize alcohol quickly or slowly as well as the effect alcohol is likely to have on your HDL cholesterol. It also makes a recommendation on whether moderate alcohol consumption may be good for your cholesterol based on this.

-Caffeine Sensitivity:

Similar to the alcohol sensitivity report, but for caffeine, this report tells you if you metabolize caffeine fast or slow as well as if caffeine consumption is more likely to increase your risk of hypertension and heart attack.

-Salt Sensitivity:

Recommends your daily salt intake limits based on your genetic susceptibility to sodium-related hypertension.

-Celiac predisposition:

This is exactly what it sounds like, a test for a genetic predisposition to celiac disease (an immune reaction to gluten).

-Lactose Intolerance:

Another fairly self-explanatory report, this one shows whether or not you’re genetically predisposed to lactose intolerance (found in dairy products).

Fitness Reports:

The fitness reports you receive with Diet Fitness 360 include:

-Training Intensity Response: Power vs Endurance

Judges whether your genes predispose your body to respond better to high intensity exercise (HIIT, heavy lifting/short sets) or long-duration workouts such as distance running.

-Aerobic Response: VO2 Max

Determines how your genetic variants affect your ability to utilize oxygen during exercise. This is shown on a scale of “very low” to “very high” with a recommendation on how best to improve your VO2 max based on that information.

-Post Exercise Recovery: Recovery Time After Exercise

Shows how quickly you should recover after exercise based on your genetics on a scale from “very slow” to “very fast.” A recommendation is given for time between workouts you should wait (ex/ 48 hours) to let your body recover. Some nutrition recommendations are also given to reduce inflammatory and oxidative metabolic stress. Things like how much Vitamin C and Omega3 you should be consuming a day.

-Injury Predisposition: Chances of Soft-Tissue Injuries

Based on genes tied to collagen production, this report judges your chances of soft tissue injuries during exercise from “very low” to “very high.”  Recommended stretches or exercises to help prevent these types of injuries are given based on your results.

Meal Planner:

Both Diet Pro and Diet Fitness 360 offer access to this. It’s a meal planner/food diary that automatically provides meal and snack recommendations based on the diet your genetic reports implied would be best for you. It also allows for goal tracking.

Muscle Builder or Fat Burner:

These programs create workout plans based on your genetic reports. The muscle builder is for those looking to build muscle and the fat burner is for those (shocker here) looking to burn fat. With the Diet Fitness 360 program you can chose one or the other. Neither come with the Diet Pro program. They are essentially the exercise version of the meal planner.

My report also came with a few other addons which I can’t seem to find any info on whether  are included in both programs or not. My access was to the Diet Fitness 360.

Infographic and Stress Profile Downloads:

Both of these were downloads rather than loading on the DNAfit website. The infographic just neatly presents all the information that was in my reports. The stress profile appears to be another report (perhaps a beta of something they plan to offer in the future?). It shows your genetic predisposition to respond to immediate and chronic stress in different ways.

dnafit review

Amplify:

This section is not actually a report, it allows you to order custom made daily multi-vitamins based on the needs presented in your reports. The pricing here was in British pounds but came out to about $79 US. There was no indication of how many days of supplementation this provides or any real information beyond a breakdown of my “custom” blend. I didn’t order it as a result, but it’s a section at DNAfit in the report section, so I mentioned it here to offer a complete DNAfit review.

Consultation:

You book this with either a dietician (Diet Pro) or a sports scientist (Diet Fitness Pro). It can be done over the phone or by email. You can ask questions, but you’ll also get a complete explanation of your reports. I didn’t have any questions and did my consult via email. I only provided a little info about where I was now health wise, where I wanted to be, and what I was doing already. what I received was mostly regurgitated info from my reports, but there were also some helpful tips on how to transition from the diet I’m currently on to the one suggested in my reports, and a bit more personalized fitness recommendation. I think that someone with more questions might get a lot more out of this portion of the product.

DNAfit VS. 23andme:

As 23andme is one of the other well-known providers of DNA health reports, I thought it might be worth talking a bit about how the two compare. 23andme’s health reports focus much less on fitness and diet than DNAfit (which does make sense), but there are some report overlaps including the info found in the saturated fat sensitivity, training intensity report, lactose intolerance, and celiac disease reports. 23andme only has a few other diet/fitness reports that DNAfit doesn’t have including your genetic weight tendency, fructose intolerance, and several blood sugar related reports.   If your main interest is in the fitness portion of health reports and not in more genetic diseases, then DNAfit is likely going to be a better option for you.

However, there is also a third option, far less known than 23andme’s health reports—Promethease. You can read a full review here, but Promethease runs your DNA against a large SNP database, the same one that both 23andme and DNAfit use for their reports. You get a lot of data. I had over 22,000 results. Now while that report will get you all the information you’d get from both 23andme or DNAfit, you also have to dig and draw your own conclusions.

For instance, to find out if you should be eating a low carb diet, you’d have to search out all the genes flagged for that topic, read them all, and come to a conclusion. It can be far more work intensive. Promethease is $12, though you do need a RAW DNA download, so it really only becomes cheaper if you’ve already tested somewhere else.

DNAfit review final thoughts:

Honestly, while I found the information in these reports helpful, I don’t think I would pay the prices being asked for them. The Diet Fitness Pro program is $99.99. The same price as testing at AncestryDNA or 23andme’s basic DNA test (no health reports), but the focus is different. That price at those companies gets you ancestry composition and DNA matches to find family, not just health information that may or may not even apply for you. A predisposition is not the same as a diagnosis. The recommendations given may not even help you, they’re just a good place to start.

For instance, while my DNA may say I handle carbs just fine, and suggests I follow a Mediterranean diet, I’m also glucose intolerant and have been told by my health care provider to follow a low carb diet. My DNAfit consultation said I should avoid dairy, because of my results for lactose intolerance, but I have never had any issue eating dairy. I’m not suggesting DNAfit isn’t clear about this, they are, on every report they are very clear on what your result does and does not mean. I’m just saying that, for me at least, I’m not sure that information would be worth the price tag. It may or may not be for you.

I also do like that DNAfit offers the option to save a bit of cash by using existing 23andme or AncestryDNA raw DNA, but at the same time the savings there are also not as much as you’d expect given, at least by my assumption, a fair piece of the DNAfit price tag was in testing cost. You only get $10 off Diet pro or $20 of Diet Fitness 360, even with a 20 percent referral discount, you’d be looking at $48 to $64.

I would be far more likely to recommend DNAfit to others, if the price were a bit lower with existing test results.

Did you find our in-depth DNAfit review helpful? Check out our other DNA product reviews:
23andme
AncestryDNA
Promethease
GenomeLink

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