Genes and Eating Preferences, Their Roles in Personalized Nutrition

Genes (Basel). 2020 Mar 27;11(4):357. doi: 10.3390/genes11040357.


At present, personalized diets, which take into account consumer genetic characteristics, are growing popular. Nutrigenetics studies the effect of gene variations on metabolism and nutrigenomics, which branches off further and investigates how nutrients and food compounds affect genes. This work deals with the mutations affecting the assimilation of metabolites, contributing to nutrigenetic studies. We searched for the genes responsible for eating preferences which allow for the tailoring of personalized diets. Presently, genetic nutrition is growing in demand, as it contributes to the prevention and/or rehabilitation of non-communicable diseases, both monogenic and polygenic. In this work, we showed single-nucleotide polymorphisms in genes-missense mutations that change the functions of coded proteins, resulting in a particular eating preferences or a disease. We studied the genes influencing food preferences-particularly those responsible for fats and carbohydrates absorption, food intolerance, metabolism of vitamins, taste sensations, oxidation of xenobiotics, eating preferences and food addiction. As a result, 34 genes were identified that affect eating preferences. Significant shortcomings were found in the methods/programs for developing personalized diets that are used today, and the weaknesses were revealed in the development of nutrigenetics (inconsistency of data on SNP genes, ignoring population genetics data, difficult information to understand consumer, etc.). Taking into account all the shortcomings, an approximate model was proposed in the review for selecting an appropriate personalized diet. In the future, it is planned to develop the proposed model for the compilation of individual diets.

Keywords: eating preferences; functional product; genotype; nutrigenetics; personalized nutrition; polymorphism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diet*
  • Food Preferences*
  • Genes*
  • Humans
  • Nutrigenomics*
  • Nutrition Therapy
  • Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
  • Pharmacogenetics
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide*
  • Precision Medicine*