Thursday, May 30, 2013

Things I’ve Learned

All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten
You’ve heard the saying above before.   Well, I’ve come to find out that’s not necessarily true.  I didn’t learn everything in kindergarten.  I’ve certainly learned a lot recently.

I mentioned a few days ago that it was raining cats and dogs.  Well, the rain has been intermittent but when it rains, it’s been really pouring hard.  There were many gorgeous days in April and the first part of May but the last couple of weeks we’ve had the rain just dump on us. The only alternative has been to stay in and find something else to do.  Other than the quick walks with Duchess, we’ve not done a lot of outside activities.  However, the weather is due to change.  This should be the last rainy day.  We have warm sunny skies ahead of us.  At least that’s what the weatherman is saying.

I have been getting educated though.  The DNA I had done on Terry is finally finished processing. He definitely has some inherited health traits he can blame on his mom and dad.  Even some of our weight gain is their fault and probably the fault of our grandparents.  Terry can attribute 7.9 pounds of his weight to his inherited genes.  I sure wish I could blame my parents for nearly 8 pounds of mine.  However, every pound I’m packing around is my fault except for 1.98 of those.  Those belong to what I inherited.

As we age (and the alternative is worse) our body is more likely to start having issues that it didn’t oldhave when we were young things.  Older folks tend to be more concerned about heart attacks, strokes and even arthritis.  Alzheimer's or Parkinson's strike more often than we like too.  Even though genetics isn’t entirely to blame, it certainly plays a role.

My risk of a heart attack over the next ten years is 4%.  However, Terry’s risk is higher.  His risk of a heart attack over the next ten years is almost 12%.  Now that’s not a good thing.  I’m thinking he should call his mom and complain.

Rheumatoid Arthritis is another thing none of us want to experience.  It would certainly mean that our activities would be cut back. The RV may need to be sold and we might be grounded.  The inheritability of rheumatoid arthritis is estimated to be 53-65%. Genetic factors contribute more to this than even environmental factors do.   Terry’s risk factor of obtaining this is 6.6 out of 100 and mine is 3.3 out of 100.. We may inherit the tendency for many things but what we do and the environment after that also can make a huge difference whether or not we will contract a disease.

A couple of good things were that neither one of us have the genes that most folks with Alzheimer's or Parkinson's have.  Now that doesn’t mean we won’t get dementia.  It just means we probably won’t have the excuse for it as folks with Alzheimer's or Parkinson's have.

I mentioned before that some foods are bitter to one person but not so to another. Sensitivity to bitter tastes is highly inheritable.   It was interesting to me to discover that Terry can taste certain bitter flavors and I have about an 80% chance of not being able to taste certain bitter flavors. The gene responsible for the ability to taste bitter flavors is dominant so both our kids probably inherited this from their father but certainly not from me.

ICK!! That tastes awful!   

Okay … one more thing on this bandwagon and I’ll get off of it.  Have you ever known folks who flush after drinking alcohol?  They can turn beat red, get a red itchy rash, become dizzy or even become nauseous.  This is an inheritable trait.  Even a single drink goes right to work on them.  Sensitivity to alcohol — the alcohol flush reaction — depends almost entirely on a person's genes and according to our DNA neither one of us has this…..  Wait a alcohol1minute.  I’m thinking this is wrong!

Terry definitely has it.  If he drinks anything with alcohol he looks like a tomato and both our kids have exactly this same thing. Alcohol causes them to turn beat red and an itchy rash isn't far behind.  Don’t know what to say about this one but I do know that's definitely one reason not to drink.

Some can drink it and some can’t!  It's genetic!

Okay … I’ll get off this bandwagon for now.  We’ve signed up for a Kayak tour on Saturday so with sunny skies and warm weather, we are definitely looking forward to that.  Who knows … if we like it enough, we may just change our winter adventures to places where we can kayak.  If we don’t like it, at least we will be able to say that we tried.

‘Tis life on the road.


  1. You've definitely found out some interesting stuff there. I probably couldn't blame any of my weight on my folks. It's all just me. Have fun kayaking.

  2. You are a lot braver than we are. We don't want to know what is coming. We have enough trouble with what is here.

  3. Dave's mother and grandmother both had early onset Alzheimer's. Dave and his sister are having a hard time deciding if they'd like to know their odds or not. The other brothers don't seem to worry about it either way.

  4. I don't need to know that I have the genes that make one crazy, I'm already there... ;c)

  5. Me too, I'd really rather not know. However I have no cancer, heart attacks or any of the killer things back three generations. Lucky me.

  6. As for me I'm already somewhere, just can't remember where it is. However I can remember 30 years ago like it was yesterday.


  7. As I sit here and type it is POURING outside !! Yippeeeee, FREE leak test being performed !! (stole that from another Blog)

    Next time you get the itch to take a little trip come up to B.C. and spend some time in his wonderful Park I'm in. ESPECIALLY if you discover you enjoy kayaking. I'm right on the water.

  8. Well if you can't taste bitter flavors I guess you probably love Brussels Sprouts!! Must make it easier to eat some of those "good-for-you" things that I don't especially like.

  9. Hope you enjoy your kayak tour. We are always looking for friends to get out and paddle with.

  10. Interesting about the DNA testing, thanks for sharing your new found knowledge.

  11. Great info...we would rather just enjoy today...and hope tomorrow will be just as much fun! Can't wait to hear about the kayak tour. We have been considering trying that too!


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