Do you find it difficult to manage your weight at a healthy level or are you someone always struggling with losing that last 5-10 pounds?

Do you often blame it on something “out of your control” like genetics or your family DNA?

Genetics linked to body fat

Research suggests that 40-70% of the differences between 2 individuals with respect to their body fat can be linked to their genetics.

However, the genes that influence our weight only cause obesity in rare cases. Our DNA can make us susceptible to increases in body weight but that usually happens when our environment supports eating excess calories and being less physically active.

There have been numerous advancements in the role of genetics and body weight in the last decade.

One important aspect of this science is that it’s not just one gene that influences our weight but many genes. Also, genes interact with each other to further complicate the obesity puzzle.

What can genetics influence?

Genetics can influence glucose metabolism, behaviors around food selection, appetite regulation, as well as how much physical activity can affect weight loss.

For example, through personalized genomic testing, one can determine what specific genes impact their ability to lose and maintain weight loss.

FTO gene

The FTO gene is one such gene.

Certain variants of this gene can be correlated to obesity in humans. One type of variation has shown that those individuals who eat a high protein diet are more likely to lose weight than those who eat a lower protein diet no matter the ratio of fat and carbohydrate.

Also, individuals with this variant who normally have a higher appetite, the appetite can be suppressed when he or she eats more protein.

dna weight loss_3If you have this specific variant it would be critical to engage in aerobic activity to maximize weight loss and if you didn’t it would still be important for health, but may not impact your weight loss efforts.

PPARG gene

The PPARG gene appears to influence our weight and is sensitive to the type of diet we eat. It affects how our body stores and breaks down fats. Individuals who carry a certain variant in the PPARG gene and eat a Mediterranean style diet (high in monounsaturated fats) seem to be less likely to be overweight.

However, another variation in this same gene shows that actually a lower overall fat diet is more beneficial to for weight loss.

Those with the Plin1 genetic variation find it difficult to lose weight even on a low calorie diet; however, it does become easier for them if they consume a diet high in complex carbohydrates like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

People tend to think everyone who wants to lose weight should be on a high protein diet but here is an example where high protein may actually hinder weight loss.

Losing weight can be extremely challenging and keeping it off can be even more difficult

You may want to try using nutrigenomic testing to determine how your DNA influences body fat reduction and what specifics you should focus on for better weight management efforts.

To learn more about gene specific diet programs, connect with me on WatchFit where I can create a personalised diet plan for you.

Connect with Expert Angela B Moore, MS, RD, CLT




Herrera BM, Keildson S, Lindgren CM. Genetics and epigenetics of obesity. Maturitas. 2011 May;69(1):41-9. Epub 2011 Apr 3.

Rankinen T, Zuberi A, Chagnon YC, et al. The human obesity gene map: the 2005 update. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2006 Apr;14(4):529-644.

Yu ZB, Han SP, Zhu GZ, et al. Birth weight and subsequent risk of obesity: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Obes Rev. 2011 Mar 28. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-789X.2011.00867.x. [Epub ahead of print] .

Krom M, Bauer F, Collier D, Adan RA, la Fleur SE. Genetic variation and effects on human eating behavior. Annu Rev Nutr. 2009;29:283-304.

Coady SA, Jaquish CE, Fabsitz RR, Larson MG, Cupples LA, Myers RH. Genetic variability of adult body mass index: a longitudinal assessment in framingham families. Obes Res. 2002 Jul;10(7):675-81.

WatchFit Experts change lives!

And they can do the same for you.


Pollyanna Hale Health and Lifestyle coaches
Lost 13 Kg in Total
Mel, 32y Location: London, United Kingdom Working with Pollyanna changed everything. I lost 13kg, got toned and have more energy than ever! Get same results!


Chriz Zaremba Fitness Consultant
Lost 45 Kg in Total
Chris, 50y Location: London, United Kingdom Lost 45kg after the age of 50 and now competes and wins physique competitions and runs marathons Check our weight loss plans