***Today is bring a friend day***
3 rounds of:
12 Deadlifts (bodyweight)
21 Box Jumps (20″)
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Coaches Corner with Coach Ashley
How do our decisions affect us at the cellular level?
Don’t worry this is not going to be a cellular biology lesson by any means. The other day I was sitting in class and the discussion was genetics, but there was one topic specifically that was fascinating to me and I wanted to share it. Epigenetics…prior to class I had never heard of this word; but looking into it further, millions of dollars are being invested into this research and some say this will be more telling than studying genetic diseases. Basically what this refers to is the ability to alter genes in the DNA or mRNA without causing a mutation by either “silencing” or “turning on” these genes (mRNA is messenger RNA which is responsible for translation of genetic material from DNA to make proteins). We can do this by the environment we create for ourselves: what we eat, are there pesticides on our foods, smoking cigarettes, and other behaviors that we already knew affected our health but now we know takes effect at the genetic level. AND here’s the kicker, even though it is not causing gene mutation, you can still pass these alterations onto your offspring. Epigenetic diseases such as cancer, neuropsychiatry (e.g. Alzheimer’s disease), and autoimmune diseases are being studied as well as epigenetic changes: looking at how nurture shapes nature and the effects of social experience, diet and nutrition, and exposure to toxins cause change to our DNA.
Cancer is probably the most studied epigenetic disease and we know as a general population there are so many environmental factors that can cause different forms of cancer. It is by either suppressing or expressing cancer associated genes, which research continues to work to create a well identified list of genes that are more susceptible to changes and mutation in the setting of cancer. There also have been studies done looking at generations that experienced famine as well as generations that feasted and there were changes seen in the grandchildren of those studied. The grandchildren of those that feasted died earlier and had diabetes. Current research is being done to trace back the epigenetic changes linked to the issue of obesity and cancers in our population now.
As a community, we all strive to live our healthiest lives. This bit of information just gives us more of a reason too. This should also continue to drive us to educate those around us, especially those that can effect generations to come!