Epigenetics is the study of how we can change the expression of our genes without changing the sequence of the actual DNA or the genetic code. “Epi” comes from the Greek word meaning over, above, or outer. So, epigenetics is the study of changing genetics without actually touching the genes – cool right?
This new biology of epigenetics is proving that cells are very responsive to the environment, and that the impact of the environment reaches deep into the DNA of the cell.
Research has shown that cells have dynamic intelligence and that the environment can turn certain genes on or off. For example, if an environmental factor that turns on a gene that is linked to a disease process is eliminated and replaced with a healthier environment, then the predisposition for that genetic disease will not be supported and is less likely to manifest. (2)
The New Environment
New research has revealed that cells are responsive to the internal environment of our thoughts, beliefs and feelings as well as the physical environment. This research states that: (1,2)
- Genetics are controlled by the perception of the environment rather than genes themselves.
- Genes do not control who you are or your biology – your environment does.
- Genes adapt to your belief systems and identities.
- Genes cannot turn themselves on or off – only the environment can do that.
There is an old saying in Ayurveda that goes, “what you see, you become.” It’s an ancient take on epigenetics. If your environment can change your genetic expression, then it seems wise to surround yourself with a healthy environment rich in peace, love and joy rather than stress, violence and exhaustion.