Your Genes Are Not Your Destiny!

August 21, 2012 | By | Reply More

Annemarie Colbin, Ph.D.
Waking Times

How living things get to be what they are is a question that has occupied philosophers and scientists for a very long time.  In the past two or three hundred years, the focus has been on what Gregor Mendel has called units of heredity, or the physical elements that are transmitted from parents to offspring.  These are now called genes, and have become an integral part of the conversation about human beings and their health.

What genes are

The cells of living beings contain chromosomes, which are recognized as the bearers of inheritable information.  Chromosomes contain a double helix of DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) and protein.  DNA  is a long series of units called nucleotides.  It is believed that DNA makes RNA (ribonucleic acid), which differs from DNA in chemical composition.  RNA translates the information coded in the DNA and prompts the specific development of various proteins in the body.

Genes are stretches of DNA on the chromosome, and they may be thousands of nucleotide units in length.  Gene splicing, or genetic engineering, consists of snipping one (or more) genes out of the DNA of one organism and splicing it into the DNA of another organism, much like film or sound tapes are spliced to re-arrange the sequence of images or sound.

What genes do

Individual genes provide codes for the many thousands of proteins, including enzymes, that are found in the human body.  The theory called the central dogma of molecular biology is as follows: DNA makes RNA makes protein in a one-way, irreversible sequence, and no reverse feedback is possible — that is, the environment cannot influence the DNA, and acquired characteristics are not heritable.21(p104) The genotype is the total inheritable genetic line of a class of organism (e.g., A sheep), while the phenotype is the individual expression of those genes in a single organism (e.g., a particular lamb).

The chromosome theory of inheritance includes the following:

The collection of chromosomes in the fertilized egg constitutes the complete set of instructions for determining the timing and details of the formation of all the organs and tissues.

DNA is self-replicating.

DNA does not adapt to environmental stimuli.

DNA is the generator of the structure that emerges from the fertilized egg in sexual reproduction.

The reductionism of genetics was firmly established with the work of Richard Dawkins, whose concept of the selfish gene proposed that organisms are nothing but the way in which genes reproduce.

What they don’t do

Brian Goodwin, a British biologist and author of How the Leopard Changed its Spots: The Evolution of Complexity, is one of a number of scientists less than enamored with the gene/chromosome theory of inheritance.  I will paraphrase his objections to the list enumerated in the previous section.

This proposition is incorrect.  Genetic instructions, which create proteins, are insufficient to explain the processes that lead to the various organ formations such as those of the heart, nervous system, or limbs.  Genes are not sufficient to explain the morphology of the organism.

DNA is not an independent replicator; it can only replicate accurately within the context of the cell in which it resides.  That is, it needs a supportive environment, including an energy source and enzymes to help in the replication process.   This means that the whole unit reproduces, not the DNA by itself.

There is ample evidence that yeasts and bacteria can change their DNA in response to environmental information.

DNA stabilizes the morphology of the organism, but does not generate it by itself.
In addition, while a particular gene defect might be associated with a particular disease, it cannot predict if, when, and how that disease will manifest itself.

Genetic engineering, which is the splicing of genes from one organism into the germ cells of another, for all its magical promises, is a literal Pandora Box.   There are serious concerns about the irreversible effect that genetically modified organisms such as corn and soy might have on the ecosystem and its life forms, because these changes in genetic material are inheritable as well as laterally, (or horizontally) transmissible via pollen, insects, and wind-borne DNA particles.

Cloning, a procedure that allows the development of new individuals from individual cells of adult animals, instead of by normal egg and sperm union, theoretically should produce animals identical to the parent donor of the cells; however, many cloned embryos die before birth and the survivors often have growth abnormalities such as breathing difficulties, heart problems, and gross overweight.

Genetics is quickly becoming the new religion, and proposes to explain everything from breast cancer to personality trains as stemming from the simple action of genes.  There is a danger here.  As Ruth Hubbard and Elijah Wald argue in Exploding the Gene Myth: How genetic information is produced and manipulated by scientists, physicians, employers, insurance companies, educators, and law enforcers, The myth of the all-powerful gene is based on flawed science that discounts the environmental context in which we and our genes exist.  It has many dangers, as it can lead to genetic discrimination and hazardous medical manipulations.

Bruce Lipton, Ph.D., a former cell biologist and professor, in his book The Biology of Belief:  Unleashing the Power of Consciousness, Matter and Miracles (Hay House:  2005), clearly shows that genes are totally at the mercy of their environment – having a gene related to a disease does not in the least predict that one will get such a disease.  (By the way, everyone should read this book about mind-body medicine!)  This new understanding about the important influence of the environment is called “epigenetics.”

According to the Wall Street Journal (1/ 9/2010), the progression of coronary heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, prostate cancer, obesity, and other chronic conditions have been reversed with integrative medicine approaches such as plant-based diets, yogameditation and psychosocial support.  These approaches may change the expression of hundreds of genes in only a few months. Genes associated with cancer, heart disease and inflammation were downregulated  (“turned off”) whereas protective genes were upregulated (“turned on.”) Even drugs have not been shown to do this.

Genes and nutrition

The Central Dogma would assume that genes will always provide the same information and express the same proteins.  Interestingly, several environmental factors may limit or change the expression of genetic information, notably aging and dietary manipulations.  There was an experiment done with “agouti” mice, which have a genetic abnormality that makes them yellow, fat, and diabetic from birth.  But when “agouti” mothers were given a nutritionally enriched diet, their children turned out with the normal brown coat, thin, and healthy.  Interestingly, the healthy offspring still had the “agouti” gene, they just didn’t express it.

This experiment seems to show that nutrition can indeed influence genetic expression, for illness as well as for health.  In other words:  FOOD OVERRIDES GENETICS!  Keep that in mind when you are contemplating the difficulties of healthy eating.

Further References

About the Author

ANNEMARIE COLBIN, Ph.D., is an award-winning leader in the field of natural health, and a highly sought-after lecturer and wellness consultant. She is Founder and CEO of the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Artstm in New York City, the oldest natural foods cooking school in the US (since 1977).

This article originally appeared at, an excellent source for news and information about natural, preventative medicine. 

~~ Help Waking Times to raise the vibration by sharing this article with the buttons below…

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: Body, Evolution, Ideas, Resources, Self

Leave a Reply

Must Watch Videos

A Letter To My Siblings

A Letter To My Siblings

Zen Gardner, Guest
Waking Times

A note from Zen: An answer to a question from awakening siblings about how have I kept up with world and American events being outside the US so many years. This is part of a discussion on world topics that we’ve been debating including More

September 13, 2014 | By | 5 Replies More
5 Reasons to Expect Police Brutality to Get Worse Before it Gets Better

5 Reasons to Expect Police Brutality to Get Worse Before it Gets Better

Isaac Davis, Contributor
Waking Times

Few things are more disturbing than looking at the news each day to find yet another shocking case of American police officers using excessive brutality and belligerence against the public. There is no justification for this, and as the list of egregious rights violations by … More

September 11, 2014 | By | 11 Replies More
12 Little-Known Ways That Television Stifles Spiritual Awakening

12 Little-Known Ways That Television Stifles Spiritual Awakening

David Gardner, Guest
Waking Times

Television is a staple of almost every household in the developed world. Many kids spend more time watching TV than going to school, and the average time spent in front of the tube is 4.5 hours a day and rising. What effect does spending so More

September 8, 2014 | By | 9 Replies More
Blue Lotus : The Entheogen of Ancient Egypt

Blue Lotus : The Entheogen of Ancient Egypt

Waking Times

For over 3000 years the Blue Lotus was used by priesthood of ancient Egypt for its medicinal properties and as a spiritual sacrament. The Blue Lotus generally produces mild psychoactive effects that are purported to have a “divine” essence, which brings upon the feelings of tranquility and subtle … More

September 8, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More
3 Videos That Will Shift Your Perspective, Showing Just How Small We Really Are in the Universe

3 Videos That Will Shift Your Perspective, Showing Just How Small We Really Are in the Universe

Buck Rogers, Staff Writer
Waking Times

Keeping a sense of perspective in these crazy times is imperative, and as astronomy pushes the envelope, seeking an ever greater understanding of our place in the cosmos, we are sometimes rewarded with fascinating new visual interpretations of our universe that have the … More

September 6, 2014 | By | Reply More

Activism Works

Sweden Recycling 99 Percent Of Garbage, Edging Closer To Zero-Waste

Sweden Recycling 99 Percent Of Garbage, Edging Closer To Zero-Waste

April McCarthy, Prevent Disease
Waking Times

There’s a revolution happening in Sweden right now. Dubbed the “recycling revolution,” the Scandinavian country now recycles 99 percent of their garbage, edging closer to a zero-waste lifestyle, nationwide.

Wouldn’t it be great if no household waste was wasted? If each and every item … More

September 4, 2014 | By | 6 Replies More
Food as Medicine: How One Hospital Is Using Organic Produce to Help Heal Patients

Food as Medicine: How One Hospital Is Using Organic Produce to Help Heal Patients

Coach Mark Smallwood, EcoWatch
Waking Times

In 431 B.C. Hippocrates said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”

More than 2500 years later, we are inundated with advertisements boasting the latest, greatest cure-all super drug. From a young age, we learn that it doesn’t matter how or … More

August 23, 2014 | By | 4 Replies More
As Keystone XL Dominoes Fall, Time to Arrest Tar Sands Industry

As Keystone XL Dominoes Fall, Time to Arrest Tar Sands Industry

, EcoWatch
Waking Times

We’ve got this.

Thanks to the courageous and indefatigable efforts of pipeline fighters everywhere, the tide has finally turned on Keystone XL. As it becomes increasingly clear that Keystone XL’s northern leg is not going through, it is time to set our sights … More

August 4, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More
Seizing Control of Our Destinies

Seizing Control of Our Destinies

Julian Rose, Contributor
Waking Times

In 1381, at a time of great repression for the British agricultural work force, an extraordinary people’s revolutionary named Wat Tyler sprang to his feet and announced, “England should be a nation of self governing communities,” to which he added, “ No lord shall exercise … More

July 28, 2014 | By | 5 Replies More
Triumph For Citizens in Florida As Hughes Oil Company Drops Fracking Project

Triumph For Citizens in Florida As Hughes Oil Company Drops Fracking Project

Julie Dermansky, DeSmogBlog
Waking Times

On Friday morning, Dan A. Hughes Oil Company and the Collier Resources Company agreed to terminate their lease agreement, with the exception of the Collier Hogan 20-3H well, next to the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary in Naples, Florida.

Hughes Oil dropped its plans to drill … More

July 14, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More