What Runs in Your Family?

Posted: November 17, 2013 in Uncategorized
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For the last 10 years, the office of the surgeon general has declared Thanksgiving “National Family History Day.” Doctors are recommending that while everyone is gathered for the holiday, families should discuss what diseases and illnesses run in the family. This could save lives. According to a government study, 96% of adults surveyed claimed that knowing their family history is important, but only 30% have tried to keep track of their family health history.

There are many diseases and illness that can be passed down genetically, including hemophilia, cystic fibrosis, and sickle cell anemia. Genetics also correlate to the race and ethnicity of ancestors. Without speaking to members of your family, it would be difficult to see the patterns. Finding out about a reoccurring disease early could save you from it.

There are websites emerging such as Ancestory.com and Microsoft HealthVault that allow a person to research their family history and store/share medical records. The internet is helping people find information about their genetics and their health. Certain cancers and other terminal illnesses are known to be passed down.

A second important factor to a person’s health is lifestyle choices, so doctors are also suggesting portion control and moderate exercise of Thanksgiving Day as well as family health communication.

For more about talking with family about genetics visit this link:
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/11/19/health-history-thanksgiving/3626291/

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