(Excerpt from Mercola.com)
Far from being “written in stone,” genetic expression can be altered by influences coming from outside the gene. This influence alters the operation of the gene, but does not affect the DNA blueprint itself. This process is known as “epigenetics,” and occurs mainly through methylation. As described in the featured article:
“In methylation, clusters of atoms, called methyl groups, attach to the outside of a gene like microscopic mollusks and make the gene more or less able to receive and respond to biochemical signals from the body.”
Methylation patterns can be altered by a variety of lifestyle changes, such as diet and exercise. Toxic exposure also tends to affect genetic expression, by altering the types of proteins a particular gene will express.
In this way, your environment, diet, and general lifestyle play a significant role in your state of health and development of disease. When it comes to exercise, previous research has found that exercise can induce immediate changes in the methylation patterns of genes found in your muscle cells.
A study published in the journal Cell Metabolism2 in 2012 showed that while the underlying genetic code in the muscle remains unchanged, vigorous exercise—even if brief—causes structural and chemical changes in the DNA molecules within the muscles.
Full article: http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2015/02/13/exercise-affects-genes.aspx
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