If you have a family history of obesity, you don't have to sit back and accept that you're destined for weight gain and chronic disease. Sure, in rare cases, genes can predispose people to obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. But this does not render you powerless.
In a comprehensive 2013 study on genes and obesity, researchers identified 32 different genes that can contribute to obesity. But even in the incredibly rare case you actually have all 32 genes, the research suggests that it'd likely only account for about 22 pounds of extra weight.
And even in that unlikely scenario, you're not doomed. Familial disposition to certain conditions doesn't mean they're inevitable. The truth is, by eating well and exercising, you can prevent obesity and Type 2 diabetes, or what I collectively call diabesity.
So rather than obsessively worry about genetics, look to your body for the best way to gauge how you should eat. For example, how do you feel after eating certain foods? Are you feeling alert, vibrant, with abundant energy—or are you feeling sluggish, bloated, and in a fog?
Some people do better with more carbohydrates or less fat. Again, your body will let you know by how you feel and what works best for you. Interestingly, once you heal your body and reverse diabesity, you may be able to handle more varieties of foods as your body becomes more resilient.
In other words, what works for you might not work for other people. Everyone is different and has different biochemical needs. And yes, some people have genes predetermined for obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other complications—but there is never any reason to lose hope.
Regardless of your genes or other conditions, everyone can start with these seven strategies for weight loss and optimal health: