Have You Ever Wondered

. . . what nutrigenomics is-and what it may mean for you? Decoding the human genome, a remarkable feat completed within this new millennium, will offer a personalized way to approach health and nutrition decisions. Nutrigenomics is the study of genes and their link to nutrition. It's how nutrients and other food components interact with a person's genetic makeup, regulating particular genes to increase or decrease the risk for certain diseases.

Nutrigenomics offers a huge opportunity to customize what people eat for their unique genetic makeup. The goal: the potential to slow and even prevent all kinds of diseases-some directly nutrition-related, such as celiac disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and heart disease, others not, such as sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis, and Alzheimer's disease-for those at risk. Understanding functional foods and nutrigenomics goes hand in hand, as science reveals the unique ways that foods' many substances work and interact within body cells.

That said, a great deal of research is needed before gene-based nutrition advice becomes a reality. But the first steps are being taken, already within our lifetime! ...if antibiotics used in agriculture affect human health? Antibiotics have been used in animal agriculture for many years to prevent or cure diseases in animals. The FDA and the FSIS work together to provide safe food by ensuring the proper use of animal antibiotics in agriculture. The FDA regulates and monitors the use of animal antibiotics to ensure that any residues are minimal and at very safe levels. Currently, questions have been posed about the possibility of "antibiotic resistance" in humans if animal antibiotics are used in cattle production; definitive research is needed to determine any effect from the use of animal antibiotics on human health. (Penicillin, important to human health, is not used with cattle.) Meat and poultry may be labeled "no antibiotics added" or "raised without antibiotics" if there's enough substantiated proof to the FSIS that animals were raised without them.

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