Following our second exclusive Beauty Warriors event, held at Anti-Aging Art in Houghton, we met up with Dr. Tamara Pheiffer to discuss bio-hacking with her.
Find out more about this interesting topic below.
What are biohacking and biogerontology and what does this mean for me?
Medical Biohacking is the study and practice of healthspan extension. It is a way of analyzing your unique biochemistry and genetics as well as your medical history and environment to create a designer way of life that will optimize your health and wellbeing in every aspect.
Stronger. Faster. Smarter. It also allows us to pick up trends toward disease before there is functional damage and reduce the risk of you falling ill by around 75%. It allows us to be strong and agile to an older age and be the life of the party at your great grandchildren’s wedding.
Biogerontology is the study of cleaning up the accumulative damage caused by our environment and day to day biochemical processes in the body. The accumulation of this damage over time leads to age-related diseases, pain and inflammation, and the entire aging process. If we are able to clean this damage up, almost like an annual spring clean, we may be able to stop it from getting to that tipping point where aging and tissue damage occurs. This will significantly increase the number of healthy, vibrant years in our lives, while simultaneously reducing the number of years where we feel sick and tired and sore.
There are 2 different types of gene testing, please elaborate
Yes, we have high penetrance genetic testing and low penetrance genetic testing.
High penetrance genetic tests are used to establish a very high risk of getting a particular disease. If you test positive in these genes you have a very high risk of getting the disease and there is very little that we can do to change the outcome.
Low penetrance genetic testing shows us where your body’s strengths and weaknesses lie. They show us how easily your body is able to eliminate waste and get the damaging molecules out of the cells before they can negatively affect your genes, cell health, and cell death.
We can pick up heart risk factors, sugar metabolism and diabetes risk, bone and joint health, injury risk and even whether you are better designed for endurance or power exercises and how many days a week you should be training to get optimal results. With this kind of testing, by knowing your exact genetic map in these areas we are able to build the bridge before the gap appears. This gives the incredible opportunity to have up to 75% control of our health and wellness destiny and to work smartly rather than very hard to attain energy levels, strength and mental agility beyond anything we could have imagined before.
At what age should you consider DNA testing for the purposes of anti-aging?
I believe that the earlier we start the less damage has had time to accumulate. Although we are working on strategies to reverse this damage, the science is not entirely where it could be just yet. It is also easier to make these changes when you are younger. These tests can be done at any age. My advice is… You are never younger than you are today. It is never too late to feel better and stronger.
Can I get it done in SA or only via labs in Denmark or the states?
South Africa has some of the best labs for low penetrance genetic testing. What is incredible is that we are able to utilize the latest science and technology here. We have SkinDNA from Australia which is the most accurate genetic test for your skin in the world. This can tell you exactly which ingredients to use on your skin, which treatments to do and diet and lifestyle factors that will play a role. The results when you personalize your skincare are incredible.
For health and biohacking, we use 3×4 which is testing full genetic pathways rather than single-gene mutations. This gives us a much more holistic and accurate view of your genetic potential and risk factors so that we can provide the best solutions. In order to provide this test to patients, you have to have a masters level education in nutrigenomics.
It is incredibly important to have the most accurate information when making these decisions and that is why we partner with specific testing companies.
What is the process of DNA testing in SA?
It is important to choose a medical professional who is well versed in genetics and nutrigenomics so that you can get the best outcomes
It is a simple cheek swab and 2-3 weeks later your results arrive and now is where the fun begins. We get to have a glimpse into 2 possible futures. One where we live our designer life and feel younger, stronger, faster smarter for longer, or one where we get sicker and slower for the next 30-40 years.
It is a massive opportunity to be your healthiest self right into old age.
We have the tools, will you use them?
If you would like to book an appointment with Dr. Pheiffer, please book through Anti-Aging art, use the discount code BeautyWarriors8 to get a 10% discount on select procedures.