Will your diet harm or heal your grandchildren?

You are what you eat right? And you also are the expression of your genes.  So which one is most important to your health and how do the 2 factors affect each other?

Recently I’ve been researching questions like do your genes determine your ideal diet? Does your diet change your genes? Can your eating decisions today have an impact on your children’s and grandchildren’s health?

To answer these interesting questions we need to look to the science of Nutritional genomics. This is a longish post so I’ll tell you my conclusions upfront:

  • epigenetics, especially the history of your parents and grandparents, is the number one factor in determining your predisposition to disease;
  • your diet can be the big factor that triggers that predisposition, i.e. what actually makes you sick;
  • fixing your diet can do wonders to improve your health and life expectancy (like you didn’t know that already!);
  • making the wrong eating choices can do your grandchildren some serious harm – but this may be limited to age 12 for boy and during pregnancy for woman; and finally
  • despite good intentions, fixing your diet is unlikely to do anything to change the genetic predisposition you pass on to your children. (Fortunately you can easily use RPT to change it, which is what yesterday’s post was about).

Let me explain why… I’ve spent the last month deep in my epigenetic research here in the South Pacific islands. As I wrote about recently, there is a clear epigenetic factor in the distribution of diabetes in these islands, and the epigenetics seems to outweigh the other big cause of diabetes – diet.

We know that diet is a factor in diabetes – for example when an indigenous culture adopts a Western diet;  studies suggest that diet can increase the rate of diabetes from 1% to 20% in ethnic Chinese and to over 50% in native American people.

So the big question I want to ask today is just how important is your diet in preventing or curing disease?

I was inspired to write this article after reading a really interesting blog written by my friend and teacher Anand.  Anand’s “living food” workshops are awesome.  Anand was sharing on his blog last week about how his children healed themselves from a genetic illness through adopting a live food diet.  He made a comment which I found interesting, that hopefully his children wont pass the disease on to their children.

This got me and others thinking and sparked a little discussion in the comments section about nature v nurture, and epigenetics versus diet. One of Anand’s readers introduced me to a new term: Nutrigenomics.

The role of diet: Nutrigenomics

Wikipedia defines “Nutritional genomics as the “science studying the relationship between human genome, nutrition and health.”   It has several aspects, one of which is Nutrigenomics, the study of how diet affects our health through altering the genome.  The other branch, Nutrigenetics looks (in simple terms) at how people with different genes will benefit from different diets – so that one day you can do a blood test and get a personalized health diet program.

A detailed study of Nutrigenomics is way beyond the scope of today’s blog, though I recommend this Wikipedia article.

What interests me is simple – can your diet alter the way your genes are expressed? Put a different way: if you can heal yourself of a disease by fixing your diet, does that prevent your children getting that disease?

My short answer is “no.”

A simple model of disease

In order to answer these questions I want to remind you of my simple model of disease from recent articles:

  • Some people are predisposed to get certain diseases, like cancer.  In the past we called this a “genetic” predisposition, but recent evidence suggests that it has more to do with how the genes are expressed rather than variations in the genes themselves.
  • This makes it an “epigenetic predisposition.”
  • Just because you have the predisposition doesn’t mean you’ll get sick, the predisposition is usually switched on by an environmental stress.
  • The environmental stress can be emotional (e.g. trauma) or physical (exposure to toxicity from food or environment such as smoking).

I believe that most disease processes can be explained by this simple model.

What about healing?

Since most diseases are made up of both a pre-disposition and an environmental stress, it follows that it might be possible to heal the disease by removing (healing) either one of these factors.  If you took away the stress, just having a predisposition wouldn’t make you sick, or vice versa.

In practice it makes sense to try to clear both the predisposition and the environmental stress, and this is what Reference Point Therapy is all about.

Back to Nutrigenomics

Back to our key question for the day: can your diet alter the way your genes are expressed?  I think a full answer to this question will take years of scientific research.  Fortunately for us, we don’t have to wait for this research because I think that scientists are asking the wrong question.

Reading academic papers on the subject like “The Epidemiology of Diabetes” made me realize that scientists are still looking for genetic answers when they should be looking for epigenetic answers.  Geneticists are still searching for the gene that explains why indigenous people have higher rates of diabetes than Anglo-Saxons when they switch to a Western diet.  Once the diet is the same, they reason that the difference is genetic.

The difference is not genetic, it’s epigenetic. There does not need to be a difference in our genes.  You cannot compare the health of Anglo-Saxons to the health of (say) African-Americans or Native Americans without considering the history of slavery and persecution.  My research in the Pacific Islands has convinced me that it is the family history of trauma that is the most important factor in determining how diet expresses itself as disease.

Back to the question of whether diet can alter the DNA?  My answer is “you are asking the wrong question.”  Unless the epigenetic history of trauma is cleared, the disease process will manifest itself in different ways through other genes.

We need to ask the right question, which might be: can we heal our epigenome through correcting our diet? My answer is “maybe.”

Nutritional epigenetics

This brings us to the crux of today’s article: how does diet affect the expression of our epigenome (which causes most of the diseases relevant to our work).  There is a new scientific study called nutritional epigenetics (e.g. see this excellent article).

We already know that our diet rewrites our epigenome – in fact one of the groundbreaking epigenetic studies (discussed in the videos we hosted in Part 1) looked at the history of famine and surplus food in Scandinavia.  The experience of famine and especially of surplus altered the epigenome for 3 or more generations. (Eating too much did more epigenetic damage than eating than too little. This is not as surprising as it sounds because the people who really starved didn’t live long enough to have babies, so it skewed the statistics.)

We know that food abuse (too much or too little) causes epigenetic change and disease.  But can food be used as therapy to cure this? Research is required, but I think the answer is “no.”

Studies with mice showed that an epigenetic changed caused by diet can take many generations (of supposedly “correct diet”) to heal.  The usual explanation is that the epigenome is self-correcting, that it goes back to “normal” after a number of generations without trauma.

Is there a quicker way to positively influence the epigenome through diet?  The only way I can think of that improving diet would create a short term epigenetic change is if the change in diet is itself a (positive) trauma.

For instance anyone switching from a high protein diet straight to a raw food diet is likely to experience some traumatic healing crisis symptoms.  Usually people feel sick as they detox, but their health significantly improves over a period of months.  The health improvement is attributed to improved nutrition and detoxification.  The interesting question is whether their children would also benefit because the trauma of the detox changed their epigenetics?  I don’t know the answer to that, and it would be almost impossible to test.

Remember from our recent epigenetics articles that the most critical moment in our epigenetic history occurs at age 12 for boys and in utero for girls.  Unless a woman was switching to a raw diet whilst pregnant (with a baby girl), the odds of the raw diet having an effect on the epigenetics are low.  If there was an effect at other times, it would be so hard to measure given the million other variables (in diet alone) that affect people over the course of their lifetime.

Conclusion – the role of diet in healing

My personal opinion is that correct diet plays a very important role in our healing journey – but very little role in the genetic legacy we leave our children.

Given the increasingly toxic environments people live in, and the decreasing rates of vitamins and minerals in store-bought food, proper diet is a huge factor in our health.  Poor diet might be the stress factor that triggers many different epigenetic conditions.

For this reason the reverse holds – correcting our diet can remove the stress and heal many epigenetic conditions. Anecdotally at least there are many cases of diseases like diabetes being healed on a raw food diet (e.g. see here).  However there is no reason to believe that correcting diet would change the genetic or epigenetic patterns.

In fact the safest answer would be to say that a good diet is a much more effective prevention than cure. If you keep yourself free from toxicity and have plenty of nutrients, there’s every chance that you will remain fit, healthy and disease free.  Even if you carry epigenetic or genetic markers for disease, a healthy diet can reduce the risk of those predispositions being activated.  I highly recommend a organic, healthy diet for this reason.  Prevention is so much more efficient than cure.

If it’s too late for prevention – if someone already has an epigenetic condition, then you should correct the diet and clear that predisposition.  The easiest way to do this is through Reference Point Therapy (directly acknowledging and clearing the ancestral trauma).

Diet remains an important factor in both preventative health (avoiding the stresses that cause disease) and in alternative medicine (aiding nutrition and detoxification).  The perfect healing system should account for both diet and epigenetic factors.

Comments and questions

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Blessings

Simon
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24 Comments
October 4, 2010 in Diet / lifestyle and health, Epigenetics
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24 Responses

  1. great article Simon, I appreciate all the research you did (the links you provided etc). You put a great deal of thought into your work.

    cheers
    John

    [Reply]

  2. I was just wondering about the importance of diet and how it relates. So you wrote this article at the perfect time for me. Very interesting.

    But what do you think about the role of diet in what we manifest in our lives? Do you believe that certain foods have different “tones” of vibrations that attract certain energies into our lives? And what do you think about the energy of alcohol?

    [Reply]

    simonrose Reply:

    hi Aya
    Those are excellent questions which go beyond the scope of this article. I put a lot of energy into trying to eat fresh organic or “live” food.

    Without a doubt malnutrition is one of the biggest causes of disease in the world. We all need to re-learn how to eat.

    I don’t really know much about your vibrational question. Perhaps you could share more of what you know on this subject?

    Evette is the expert on vibrational healing, not me. I asked her and she agrees totally with you. She said if you are drinking coffee you attract the energy of exhaustion into your life.

    I don’t know about that because I am from Melbourne – espresso runs in my blood! :-)

    As to alcohol – I am in the “all things in moderation” school of thought. I read Neale Donald Walsch’s diatribe on why the human body wasn’t designed to handle any alcohol and I thought … “nah, that’s just his (negative) spiritual belief.”

    I don’t like to preach about what people should and should not do / eat. Moderation is the key to happiness and health! :-)

    blessings
    Simon

    [Reply]

    guy Reply:

    Hi Aya. My opinion based on my own experiences around vibrations or “tones”around food is that life or the universe has no judgement around whether a food is bad for us or not. But your body does. It is judging or discerning everything you contemplate eating. It will respond as soon as you consider eating it (you will either feel good or bad if you think of eating it). So i reckon the reason that certain foods seem to ättract”negative” energies is not that the food is “bad”per se – but that it is bad for us. when we don’t listen or are habitually eating something that makes us unwell, we are often in a “habit” which suggests an unconscious relationship between us, the food and our body. To continue to eat this way is a denial of the feedback our body is constantly giving. It is this denial of our own internal wisdom that is the negative energy that seems to sttract negativity, not the food itself.
    having said that i totally agree that some food is more toxic and denser in vibration than others. Some say that alcohol drops your vibration but i don’t think this is absolute. At times it feels so right to have a light beer for me but i rarely ever drink. The joy of drinking a light beer when my body FEELS like it is an upper not a downer vibration wise. Others may differ in opinion. I honour that. thanks. Guy

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  3. I don’t know too much about this. But, in the past year or so, I’ve had dreams & guidance about certain foods repeatedly. That’s very interesting what Evette said about caffeine + exhaustion. A few that are true for me (not sure if these foods affect other people in the same way), are: beef = betrayal, potato = disappointment from father/men, duck = love/new beginnings, lobster = abundance, fruit (especially berries) = very positive energy.

    [Reply]

  4. Thanks for sharing this Simon.

    Although I would say I have always eaten healthily, I have only recently started thinking about how it could be influencing how I feel and after reading your posts, thinking about how food can be a trigger also.

    It would be interesting to hear what else Evette has to share :) .

    Ollie

    [Reply]

  5. Simon,
    thanks for the info.From what i’ve heard,consuming powered clay is a good detoxer.I don’t know from personal experience, but maccaws consume the stuff traight from the ground(not healthy for humans)& then feed on berries whose toxicity is lethal.
    Food for thought(no pun intended.Really).

    Till next time.

    [Reply]

    simonrose Reply:

    hi Tom, I believe that zeolite and benzonite clay are excellent detoxifiers.

    In terms of this article, which is about diet and genetics, the main issue would be about whether toxins can influence our genetic or epigenetic makeup. I’m not an expert on this but I think that mercury and similar toxins do have this effect. In this context a good clay bath is a gift to your unborn children!

    blessings
    Simon

    [Reply]

  6. Hm, I thought about this topic for many years so, thank you for this article. Not only considering food in the genetic/epigenetic question however, I found Deepak Chopra’s ideas about genes being the “memory” in all aspects really useful. I believe changing our genetic ‘memory’ is possible however, not explainable by mainstream science as they are not looking in the right places, or have no interest to. It may take a life time to heal,and we may pass on tendencies to illnesses (I’d rather call them challenges) but if we don’t give in I believe our children and theirs have a head start in dealing with those. I say ‘believe’ but, in some ways, I see evidence of this within myself, my family and my adult son. It is almost as if there’s a kind of choice involved which way (tendency) to go. We can do what we can do, keeping toxins to a minimum and having a positive diet, yet I really think joy is the key to it all (I have met quite miserable and worried people who do all the ‘right’ things). I might sound rather unscientific here but for lack of scientific evidence this is the best I could come up with in my life (and it took a while!)
    kindest regards
    Eva

    [Reply]

  7. Well written informative article. Thank you

    [Reply]

  8. Thanks for the info. I have only just discovered this and not yet had time to read the links and will soon. Great food for thought.

    [Reply]

  9. Thanks for this article also.
    A suggestion for further research:
    Can radiation cause epigenetic changes in humans (and animals and plants)?
    We know from episodes like the accident in the nuclear-reactor Tsjernobyl in ex-Sovjet that the new babys born had defects from the nuclear-radiation.
    I have not resarched whether they mean this is a change in the actual genes or epigenetic. Anyway, today we are surrounded with radiation from mobilephones, wireless networks, etc, and all the base station with senders all around us. My question to this is:
    Could this also create a epigenetic change in us humans, as well as the animals and plants?
    Which in turn could create a massive different symptoms and diseases?
    In the terms used in this article, will radiation be an environmental stress which can switch the genes epigenetically?
    And if some people are already predisposed for such sensitivity, diseases, etc, this radiation could be the environmental stress that switches the genes.
    This could explain why there are some people that feel the effects from radiation more than others, or get ill (they are predisposed). But epigenetically, if radiation changes the genes epigenetically, this means that our children and grandchildren are the ones going to experience the radiation we are expoing ourselves to today!

    [Reply]

  10. Thanx!
    I like the information on the blog. And you’ve been introducing me to epigenetics. I´m grateful for that as well.
    I have taken RPT level 1 and 2 in Norway. That gives me a huge freedom. And a healthy diet keeps me in the zone…

    I’m hoping for a level 3 in Norway soon.

    Love, Peter

    [Reply]

    simonrose Reply:

    thanks Peter, great to have you on the blog. I’d certainly love to meet you in Norway some time. I’m not sure about a Level 3 course there – at this time the only Level 3 is in Spain in November. Spain’s a lot warmer than Norway at that time of year, are you sure you don’t want to visit?
    blessings
    Simon

    [Reply]

    Jørgen Bøckman Mæhre Reply:

    Just wanted to add to Peter’s comment. Norway is quite warm in the summer, so why not plan a level 3-course here in 2011? If we begun planning now, we could get OK prices for hotels etc. I do not know how many participants you would like to have on a level 3 course, but I do know that many of our students have are interested in a level 3 course in Norway :)

    [Reply]

    simonrose Reply:

    hi Jørgen

    Thanks for your kind note, and thanks again for all the scientific support you have given us behind the scenes. We can certainly look at this for 2011.
    Please note though that people are traveling from all over Europe EXCEPT Norway to do the course in Malaga. Why do you think this would be the case? What’s different about Norway in this respect?

    We will probably just teach one Level 3 per year in each of Australia, USA and Europe, so oviously people will need to travel a little whether it is across the country or across the continent. Fortunately flights are cheap these days.

    blessings
    Simon

  11. “Please note though that people are traveling from all over Europe EXCEPT Norway to do the course in Malaga. Why do you think this would be the case? What’s different about Norway in this respect?”

    A good question, but I don’t have a good answer too it. In my case I have to prioritize, as I have exams during the Malaga level 3 course. Hehe, I’ll ask some of the students next time I meet them, perhaps I’ll get a good answer :)

    [Reply]

  12. concerning diet:
    vitamin B17 seems to be a great remedy for cancer.
    says the following video:
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6507136891691870450#docid=4312930190281243507

    greetings and blessings, sascha

    [Reply]

  13. Thankyou for the information Simon, much appreciated learning.
    I have always tried to eat healthily (not always successful)but since doing RPT on myself and ancestors my diet has changed in that I have renewed energy to grow my own vegetables and fruit. It is a great enjoyment for me. I have also changed from drinking too much alchohol to drinking occasionally. I am more aware of toxins etc that may be present in my body and helping it by detoxing slowly, without trauma….my weight has decreased by 16 pounds over the past 9 months and my body is ‘happy’….Looking forward to next article

    [Reply]

  14. George Duisman

    Simon: Thanks again for the post and info.
    Wrong question
    I quite agree with your analysis of stress and trauma being the big factor in disease.
    >”the family history of trauma that is the most important factor in determining how diet expresses itself as disease.”
    Very well said!

    But, you too have asked the wrong question. A better question would be; “Will RPT and other methods of releasing traumas become powerful enough to eliminate our concerns about how our diet will effect our children and grandchildren and their genetics? I say that the answer is a resounding YES! It looks to me as though you’ve made an assumption that progress in the world will be pretty much the same as it’s been for many decades. I say that is not correct.

    1. Trauma healing techniques like RPT, EFT etc. are spreading and improving rapidly. My opinion is that it’s very likely that this progress trend alone will undo our trauma / disease problem over the next 20 or 30 years.

    2. When you Simon, or someone with good skills at creating coherence understands the full power of coherence combined with the ability to manifest insights, a powerful exponential growth and spread of their processes becomes possible and thus probable. This exponential growth can do the job in just a few years.

    3. There is a huge quiet groundswell of disgust regarding the lack of truth and freedom in this world. This groundswell will according to my very studied opinion, break to the surface probably within the next two months or so. When this happens, we will have truth and freedom 10 times what you ever even thought you had and humanity will start progressing something like 100 times as fast as ever before. This I see as leading to the whole of humanity obtaining full consciousness rapidly. Does this sound like someone that has “lost his marbles”? LOL I’ve been accused of that several times before. One clear example was in the mid 1970′s I was predicting that “Someday computers would be household appliances.” This thought seemed crazy to many people back then. There were older family members that talked behind my back about getting me psychological help because “George is so into computers he has lost it!” LOL Let’s wait and see what happens with this groundswell.
    I think the question should be; “How do we help to speed up our progress to full consciousness? My present answer is find out how best to get people to coherence and use that to manifest the insights to make the progress in what will help us all get to full consciousness. i.e. use insight manifesting and coherence to “pull ourselves up by our boot straps!”

    [Reply]

    Simon Rose Reply:

    hey mate, thanks for the vote of confidence.

    So what do you know that I don’t know about the change in consciousness over the next 2 months? Email me if you don’t want to post it here!

    blessings
    Simon

    [Reply]

  15. George Duisman

    I think that the best way for me to share some of what I know about the coming changes is for you to tell me a bit about what you know. That way I won’t be guessing and throwing you into an area that might be almost totally foreign to you.
    One of the things that I do is to qualify my sources of info and none seem to be totally accurate on these coming changes. For instance, “source one” knows a lot about situation A, a little about situation B and almost nothing about situation C. This can make sharing difficult, because I do this qualifying without much thought and when I tell someone about “source one” having good info, they often notice that “source one” says something that is wrong regarding situation C and they “throw out the baby with the bath water.” Or I can take them too far, too fast, like “computers will someday be household appliances.” and they think I’ve lost it.
    So tell me a little about what you know or believe about what’s coming and I can likely give you some info that fits and expands your knowledge. I presume that you can access the email address that I enter here and can email me.
    P.S. Please note that I said “…probably within the next two months or so.” I’ve been over optimistic on this before.

    [Reply]

  16. interesting, and very relevant to something I have been ruminating about recently.
    I strongly believe that we should sooner or later see the circle closed between personalised medicine in the west, genomics, genotyping etc and traditional eastern personalised medicine like ayurveda. There are already studies showing that different doshas are refected in a different P450 distribution in different individuals (Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 249528)

    So the obvious comment/question to your article is… is ayurveda essentially nutritional genomics? I am tempted to think so.

    Thanks for a very interesting article. Only one small comment. I think reference to the original sources (for example the paper on Journal of Neurosciences for the LTP effects in mice) adds strength to any statement, so I would recommend citing as much peer-reviewed literature as possible

    [Reply]

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