September 19

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Epigenetics, methylation, and dopamine addiction with Dr. Ben Lynch

By heheals

September 19, 2020




Many of us believe our genes doom us to the disorders that run in our families but today’s guest, Dr. Ben Lynch argues that with the right plan in place, you can eliminate symptoms, optimize your physical and mental health—and ultimately rewrite your genetic destiny. Dr. Lynch is the author of Dirty Genes, and in it, he discusses eight genes whose correct functioning our health depends on and how to optimize their functioning. Dr. Lynch starts by talking about how he got interested in the field of epigenetics before giving listeners an idea of what this field of research entails. He talks about the concept of translational epigenetics next, according to which our decisions and experiences affect our children and even grandchildren. We spend a great deal of time on the topic of dopamine too, and Dr. Lynch sketches out how people either have less or more of it overall thanks to the functioning of their COMT gene. People with higher or lower dopamine respond completely differently to stressors, and dopamine can become addictive, but the good news is that it can be managed to help accommodate an abundance or scarcity. From there, we talk about the body’s microbiome and its effects on health as well as ways to test it and regulate it, before Dr. Lynch shares about the importance of methylation for the body’s healthy functioning. Dr. Lynch then runs listeners through the eight genes he discusses in his book, talking about the effects they have on our bodies of not functioning correctly and also touches on some of what we can do to optimize them, including healthy eating, good sleep, stress relief, and environmental detox.

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Timestamps

Introducing today’s conversation with Dr. Ben Lynch. [0:17]
What epigenetics is and how Dr. Lynch got into it. [4:20]
Research questioning how much genetics really is responsible for different health conditions. [7:28]
Protecting children from events that cause negative epigenetic shifts. [10:12]
Understanding translational epigenetics: passing genetic programming onto offspring. [11:30]
Preparing for a predisposed weakness using epigenetic knowledge. [16:11]
The problem of dopamine addiction from things like computer games. [19:45]
How a genetic susceptibility can result in dopamine addiction. [21:27]
Connections between dopamine crashes and other addictions. [21:50]
The connection between COMT, dopamine, and addictive/successful personalities. [22:56]
Supplementing to accommodate for the inheritance of a typical COMT gene. [26:17]
The danger of only supplementing one gene who relies on others to do its work. [26:54]
Effects of having naturally high dopamine levels and how to accommodate that. [28:06]
The connection between high dopamine and Parkinson’s. [30:30]
Coping mechanisms to help accommodate naturally high or low dopamine. [31:10]
Different stimulation resistance and career suitability according to dopamine levels. [34:28]
The necessity of being aware of processed food’s effects on dopamine. [36:44]
Dr. Lynch’s perspectives on ‘good-tasting alternatives;’ are they any better? [41:57]
Treatments for acne and odor and food’s effect on the microbiome. [45:30]
How to test your microbiome. [49:34]
Initial steps for self-diagnosis and treatment for dysbiosis. [51:10]
What methylation is and its use as a component of health. [53:31]
Checking methylation status by measuring homocysteine levels. [56:18]


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heheals

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  1. Have you covered ΔFosB? It’s the centerpiece to dopaminergic addiction. The gene’s expression leads to methylation which downregulates D1 and D2 expression, while upregulating its own expression. It’s evil, since neurons which express it heavily cannot unwind the changes without being replaced. Particularly, behaviors/substances known for cross-tolerance with amphetamines make it way worse.

  2. Explaining your kids several times why is bad why they need decipline will make the trick. I was very addicted to video games during my college and high school years. My dad always explained to me you can play but you need good grades in a way it helped me to have amazing grades because I was looking to play all day. Bad thing of it is that I was 285 pounds because I was eating all day playing video games and reading. When I discover the gym in my life it kind of replaced the video games so I decided to sell my playstation because was interfering with my gym goals. I guess the source of dopamine stimulus changed for me.

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