All my life, I’ve gotten the questions “What are you?… What’s your ethnic background?” almost daily (if you’re also racially mixed, I’m sure you can relate!), and I always respond with “multi-racial,” but I’ve never truly known exactly what my ancestry is. I’ve been going off of what my grandparents have told me, but according to them it might not be accurate since their ancestors were told to lie about where they were originally from after migrating to the US! What I’ve been told though, is that I’m Russian, German, Dutch and Irish from my mother’s side and Jamaican, Cuban, Creole and Native American from my father’s side. Now though, thanks to genetic testing through 23andMe, I know more than I ever have before!
23andMe is a super easy way to find out more about your ancestry, health, traits and more. The process is simple, you receive your at home genetic analysis kit, provide a saliva sample and send back to 23andMe’s lab in the pre-paid package for processing. The name is inspired by the fact that human DNA is made up of 23 pairs of chromosomes.The company’s Personal Genetic Service was created to help people understand their DNA and how it can influence everything from how you look to the foods you like to eat, as well as your risk for certain diseases.
A friend told me about 23andMe a while ago, and with my curiosity to not only learn my ancestry once and for all, but also a personal goal to lead an overall healthier lifestyle this year, it was the perfect opportunity to get a better idea of the DNA I inherited. I was especially curious to find out more about my genes, so I can possibly make better lifestyle choices, as well as share the results with my kids when they’re old enough to appreciate it.
It’s amazing how much insight 23andMe offers to help you understand how DNA can influence your health — for example, whether you’re predisposed to certain diseases. I already know my risks of inheriting certain diseases is a bit higher based on incidences within my family, so I was particularly interested in genetic health reports that 23andMe offers.
The process was super easy and the company makes it even easier to follow the step-by-step instructions on the kit, provide your saliva, register your kit online and drop it in the mail with the prepaid shipping label. It’s also super convenient to be able to go online and specify the details of what you’d like to learn through your DNA, which was really interesting for me, since I wanted to know everything I could!
I wasn’t surprised to see that I’m not likely to be an especially deep sleeper, as well as some of the other data in the wellness report section. And as for the answer to what my true ancestry is, I’m 68.3% European (mostly British, Irish, French & German, as well as Ashkenazi Jewish) and 29% Sub-Saharan African (mostly West African), which isn’t far off from what my grandparents have always told me! If you’re wondering about your own ethnic background or want to know more about what may influence your health through your DNA, I highly recommend 23andMe – both of my parents and one of my sisters have already sent their own kits in and we’ve even been able to find second and third cousins we didn’t know we had, through the DNA relative tool on the website! To order your own 23andMe kit, click here.
Thanks to 23andMe for sponsoring this post.