Should I get tested for MTHFR?
So you’ve heard about MTHFR variants. How? A friend? A magazine? A website? Or do you have chronic, unexplained health issues, and you’re wondering if it’s been a methylation problem all along?
As MTHFR experts, we’re willing to admit that, with the number of health problems that have been linked to MTHFR mutations and variants, even a generally healthy person could start thinking, “Geez. Maybe I have an MTHFR issue…” after getting into the reading for a while. Because even generally healthy people at least occasionally experience these:
- Weakened immune systems
- Difficulty focusing
- Symptoms or diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Hormonal imbalances
- For women–miscarriage
MTHFR variants and mutations DO occur more often than most people realize. The reality is that probably about 60 percent of the population has a genetic variation of the MTHFR enzyme. And while that is a majority, it’s not everyone. And while that majority has a genetic variant, not EVERY MTHFR variant causes significant health issues.
We’re science people. We like truth and facts. No fear-mongering, no telling everyone and his brother that they MUST get tested just in case and that anything less is irresponsible and unhealthy. That’s not how we roll.
But we are ALSO health people who want to give you your best shot at your best life.
If you’re dealing with any of the following, it may well warrant getting tested for an MTHFR genetic mutation:
- Multiple miscarriages with no clear explanation
- Known high levels of homocysteine
- You and/or close family members have a history of premature heart disease or blood vessel disorders
- A close relative has confirmed an MTHFR variant
- Persistent, debilitating migraines that haven’t responded to treatment
- You have a child with a neural tube defect like Spina Bifida even though you took folic acid before and during pregnancy.
- Depression and/or IBS is a significant factor in your life
- Chronic Fatigue and/or Fibromyalgia symptoms plague you
- You suffer from heavy metals, chemical sensitivities, and/or an environmental toxic burden that seems to tip you into chronic illness
Some of these conditions are strong indicators of reduced methylation, meaning that they often coincide with your body not getting enough of its needed nutrients, even when you generally eat healthy and take care of yourself. Others, like Autism, have been studied and show encouraging results when methylfolate is a part of a wellness plan. Raised homocysteine is often an indicator of reduced methylation, and elevated homocysteine levels can lead to blood clots and heart disease.
Several of these conditions are simply so painful, whether physically, emotionally, or both, that it’s just worth it to pursue all avenues for healing.
What would it be like to get tested for MTHFR variants?
A cheek swab DNA test.
A blood test.