Unique Valentine’s Day Gift Idea

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Coming up with unique and thoughtful gifts for Valentine’s Day isn’t always easy. Until now.

You know how giving someone the gift of an ancestry DNA test was one of the hottest gifts during the holidays? Well, why not take that a step further and give a similar gift, but one that helps your loved one keep their New Years resolutions to be healthier and look better?

I wrote a post this summer detailing my results with the Home DNA Skincare test, which gave me insight into how my skin is aging, how to protect it,  and what products I can use to help combat the signs of aging. I now use the kinds of products and ingredients the test recommended, and it’s been going great. So, when I saw Home DNA offers the Healthy Weight™ test, which is a simple at-home cheek swab that provides you with in-depth, info about your body and the types of training, diets and supplements it responds to best, I had to try it. Not only that, but a lightbulb went off in my head, and I realized it would make the perfect gift for my husband, too! We’ve been trying to set goals to lose weight and exercise more often, so this was a fun and easy way to do it. I ordered the kits, we swabbed the inside of our mouths, and sent our DNA sample in.  Within a few weeks, we were sent a DNA fitness profile with personal recommendations for food, nutrition and exercise for meeting our body’s optimal weight for our genotype. What I loved about this is that it gave us a baseline to start from instead of trying to eliminate diets, workouts, and supplements that weren’t the best fit.

In this post, I want to share my results with you. In a separate post, I’m going to share what my husband thought about the gift and what he learned. It’s been a super fun thing to do together, but since it’s so much information, I decided it’s worthy of two posts! 🙂

Here are my results, and some of them were definitely surprising:

Coming from an extremely athletic family and a sharing DNA with a sister who can lose weight just by breathing, I was surprised to see that my results said I have below average ability to lose weight with diet and exercise! I also fell below average in fat loss response to cardio, and fitness response to cardio. My Vitamins B9, B6, and B12 were also low, which was a little unsettling, too. The rest of my results looked normal, which was a relief. But I had to wonder why my body has such a hard time losing weight with diet and exercise?! This prompted me to do more research…which included realizing factors like lack of sleep and medications can alter your body chemistry and make it harder to lose weight. I have to confess that my old work schedule of 5-6 hours of sleep per night and taking some very strong medications for health reasons for a time were certainly contributing factors to a weight gain I experienced. So much so, that none of my clothes really fit anymore. I looked heavy on camera. And I was downright uncomfortable. Heck, at my last job, someone who shall remain nameless told me I looked “too curvy” on camera and that I should stand differently so it wasn’t “so noticeable”. Curvy didn’t mean voluptuous; it meant fat. It hurt my feelings at first. But then I realized that this didn’t have to be a problem. I (very) recently began running almost eight miles a week (with these On Cloud running shoes that are like a dream), started doing strength training at home with my Peleton Beyond the Ride video library, and quit eating such heavy meals for dinner. I quit all those medications and started going to a naturopathic doctor. And you know what? I’m getting back to a weight where I feel comfortable again. And I’m healthier than I’ve been for a long time.

Another great thing about my Home DNA test is that it also provided a custom meal plan with super easy meals (like yogurt with honey and almonds, or tuna salad,) and a custom workout plan. That’s amazing, right? If you work with a nutritionist or trainer, it would cost you quite a bit more of these important bits of info. It’s all included in the price of the DNA kit.

There you have it. A win-win couple’s gift for Valentine’s Day! And a fresh start towards eating and exercising for my genetic makeup…one hummus and veggie at a time.

Photography: S.Jackson

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