Genomic medicine: invaluable tool for high performance sports

Looking and feeling in physical fullness is not just an axiom of Greek culture. Not an almost unattainable ideal of nutritionists and gym trainers. It is a real possibility thanks to genomic medicine, a branch of specialized medicine that offers therapeutic procedures for internal and external renewal, health, beauty and rejuvenation for each patient based on the information contained in the DNA. The discipline, which uses nutrigenomics (the study of the components of a diet and its chemical reaction at the cellular level), allows guiding decision-making based on the characteristics of each genome. The final objective of genomic medicine is the physical well-being, external and internal, of each patient. His method, therefore, is perfectly applicable to high-performance sport to optimize the results of each athlete and extend their physical potential beyond their trajectory.

Dr. Marimar Guerra is a pioneer and one of the main promoters of genomic medicine in Mexico. Founder and medical director of MEDAE Life Science, the first and only clinic in the country dedicated to this specialty, explains the benefits. “It serves to establish the risks that patients have to suffer from diseases, injuries, the type of diet they must take, the type of drugs they may or may not process. It is a tool that allows us to make tailored suits in a very personalized way and accurate for any patient “, explains in an interview with AS. How many carbohydrates, how many proteins and how many fats does the patient need from birth? findings possible thanks to genomic medicine.

Genomic medicine can be combined with other types of disciplines, such as functional medicine, food medicine, sports medicine, physical therapy, to establish development plans and physical well-being. High-performance sport can find notable dividends from genomic medicine, not only to empower brands, but to cope with the burden the body is subjected to. For this, the analysis is personalized. Each body, as a different DNA, carries a specific plan. “It is not the same as a high-performance athlete, a triathlete who is in preparation, a boxer who is dehydrated in the middle of combat, or in recovery. Genomic medicine tells us if our patient has short or long fibers; that can be known from birth and reduces the risk of injury “, develops Dr. Guerra.

“The first thing to do is a test to find out who you are, no matter what sport you do, I just want to know what the patient’s weaknesses and strengths are. I am going to use three tools: genomic medicine, with regard to prevention; then we will do a study of nutrigenomics; and pharmacogenomics, which tells us the basic supplements, plus the preparation rates. Supplementation of a patient in an active phase of long distance runner, to recovery after competition, is not the same. We evaluate how much you need folic acid, how much you need ‘x’ vitamins, “Dr. Guerra talks about the process to outline a strategy in favor of a high-performance athlete. The difference between a desired result, or a second behind the winner, it can be a mineral, a vitamin that unleashes a chemical reaction necessary for the body to exploit its maximum performance. “The plan must go hand in hand with functional medicine, internists, rehabilitation doctors; It is a gear that leads not only to the health of the body, it leads the patient to high performance. We cannot break their balance. You have to take it very carefully, “says the specialist.

Planning is also focused on the athlete’s body arriving in good condition at the end of its trajectory. “We have to understand that a high performance athlete is consuming his cartridges much faster than a patient who does his 150 minutes of ‘cardio’. Athletes claim to have a healthy life, but they are pushing their body to the limit all the time and that collect an invoice “, Dr. Guerra details. “The plan has to look towards quality of life. That you manage to reach the third age without injuries that do not allow you to walk. That you have achieved professional fulfillment as an athlete and, at the same time, completely recover what your body has given you Given. That is only done with preventive medicine, “he adds.

Genomic medicine in Mexico

Today, MEDAE collaborates with the prestigious Mayo Clinic (Minnesota) and provides its services to the general public, including athletes. “High-performance athletes already have their coach and physical trainer. What we do is approach them, provide them with the information and guide them on how they can use it”, says Guerra. However, the development of genomic medicine in the country is still in the making. Not in the arrangement of technology and methods, but in accessibility and dissemination. Genomic medicine as a path to optimal physical well-being should be within the reach of public institutions. “We are going back years (…) We are lacking both in investment and in the database. Lack of dissemination, investment in the public sector. It has been booming and provides information that is used for everything”, concludes Dr. Guerra.

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