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How can I get tested for MTHFR? A single test or a full DNA Report?

Updated: 2 days ago

If you are one of us who like to keep up with new research coming through on health, you may have heard or read about the MTHFR gene.

Approximately 50% of the population have this SNP/ mutation to some degree.

A couple of years ago I had this test. There were a number of reasons why I wanted to get this test done; I was keen to know my own MTHFR profile (see below) and secondly when I recommend a test to my clients it is helpful to have personal experience with the testing procedure myself. This also helps me answer and identify the concern/questions that a client may have.

I also wanted to be able to share the information with my family about whether there are specific health issues that they may be predisposed to, and this gives them the opportunity to implement the necessary lifestyle and dietary recommendations that may be important to implement.

However, my main motivation for getting this test done was so that I could have insight with where I need to support my own detoxification health. I have had some ongoing health issues, and the new research out links quite a few of them (fibromyalgia, many female hormonal health problems over 3 decades, and a past history of migraines, pre-eclampsia, and insomnia, plus growing up on an orchard where there were many sprays used) Plus I was coming up to my mid 50s, so high time to get serious about having great health!

I suspected there was a serious likelihood of reduced MTHFR enzyme activity, and I was interested to see whether I have this defective gene and to what level the enzyme activity is affected. (Of course, as mentioned below, just having the mutation does not mean everyone develops serious health issues, that depends on many factors).

A simple explanation:

This simple test will determine how your MethyleneTetraHydroFolate Reductase (MTHFR) enzyme is functioning. This enzyme helps to convert folic acid to folate. Having a 'weakness' or genetic SNP with this gene can be associated with a range of health conditions such as: cardiovascular disease (such as migraines and blood clotting disorders), some mental health conditions (such as depression, anxiety), some hormonal issues, and a reduced ability to methylate.

Methylation is involved in many, many processes in the body including fighting infection, switching genes on and off (epigenetics), detoxification of environmental toxins and making neurotransmitters.

Environmental toxins are widespread in our current world - from herbicides, insecticides and other sprays, to heavy metals, fuel, paint fumes, other chemicals used in various industries, to additives and preservatives in foods, cleaning products, skin care, hair dyes and more.

The 2 MTHFR genetic SNPs* that are most commonly tested are A1298C and C677T.

We each have 2 copies of both A1298C and C677T.

A heterozygous result means we have one good copy and one mutated/ weak copy of the gene variant.

A homozygous result means we have two mutated or weak copies of that gene variant.

(And those who have 2 good copies of the SNP are called homozygous wild type.)

So my results came back as heterozygous for the A1298C gene mutation.

This means I have one copy of the A1298C mutation (and one good copy.) For the C677T I don't have a mutation (so two good copies)

What does that mean? It means that my MTHFR enzyme has a 20% reduction in activity. (It could have been up to an 80% reduction if I'd had more defects.) Other people I have had tested have had mutations for the C667T, which causes up to 30-40% reduction of the enzyme activity, or one of both which has an added cardiovascular risk, and 40-50% reduction in enzyme function.

Some further information for those who like me have the MTHFR 1298 SNP

These things decrease the MTHFR 1298 Gene Function: Chronic stress, oral contraceptives, high levels of mercury, arsenic, lead and aluminum, synthetic folic acid, phenylalanine, aspartame, oxidative stress and high protein diets.

To improve MTHFR 1298 Gene Function: Vitamin C, L-arginine, folate, B6, magnesium, holy basil, selenium, royal jelly and deep breathing techniques

My recommendations for those who have the MTHFR SNP

Firstly, we are born with our genetic profile, and having a genetic weakness/ mutation doesn't necessarily mean that we will develop the symptoms or diseases. There are many factors involved: which includes our lifestyle, how we manage stress, whether we get enough sleep, what we eat, how toxic our environment is, as well as other factors in our full personal genetic profile.

Stress plays such a big role in our health! Never underestimate the effect that chronic stress can have on your health.

In general, the first steps you can implement are:

1. Eat foods to support methylation such as those containing folate and B12 (citrus fruits, avocado, nuts and seeds, legumes, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, fish, eggs, beef, shellfish, seafood)

2. Drink filtered and chemical free water

3. Reduce exposure to foods that contain synthetic folic acid (cheap or lower quality supplements) contains this synthetic folate, which is difficult to process and interferes with the natural folate conversion into methyl folate. Folic acid is found in processed food and fortified (enriched food): rice, pasta, cereals, white flour, bread (look at the label) Since August 2023 it has been deemed mandatory to add it to non-organic flour in New Zealand.

4. Limit exposure to toxic substances in foods. This includes alcohol, GMO foods, processed foods, sugar, additives etc. (See the Chemical Maze book to learn more)

5. Eat organic, free range foods wherever possible.

6. Avoid environmental toxins. These include sprays, heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides. Read my article here

7. Use a good Hepa air filter to purify the air in your home

8. Choose natural fibre clothing and furniture (they won't contain flame retardant chemicals)

9.And most importantly manage and reduce your stress wherever possible.

If you would like to have this MTHFR test done book below. The test cost is $185.00 You will need to book a naturopathic consultation to discuss the results and so I can advise you on the best plan of action for your future wellbeing.

Other more comprehensive testing options that include methylation:

The comprehensive DUTCH Test which discusses methylation in relation to oestrogen metabolism. Read more here

The My DNA Comprehensive Report

The test covers an extensive 92 genes, and 113 SNP’s across the following categories:

  • Digestion

  • Energy

  • Hormones

  • Stress & Cognitive Performance

  • Inflammation

  • Athletic Performance

  • DNA Protection & Repair

  • Detoxification

  • A thorough analysis of methylation including which

A genetic strength and weaknesses summary for each section is included as well as

a personalised shopping list that highlights good sources of macro and micro-nutrient that suit your unique DNA profile.

Sample Test below

My DNA Comprehensive Report
Download PDF • 3.42MB

This test is via a cheek swab. $659 includes the test and a 1 hour session with Jasmin and a written test overview with diet, lifestyle and supplement recommendations.

*SNP stands for single-nucleotide polymorphisms

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