The TRUTH about the viral weight & genetics claim…

Written by Joe Cohen, BS | Last updated:

This past week a clip from Dr. Fatima Cody Stanford – who’s part of the 2025 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee – went viral.

In it, she mentions that the leading cause of obesity is genetics.

Joe Rogan was completely on the opposite end of this, saying that her statement gave obese people an excuse as to why they’re not losing weight, while also taking away from people that were obese and worked hard to be fit and healthier.

So, who’s right?

In my mind, both.

If someone is overweight, then there’s certainly a genetic predisposition there. Think about those people who never try to lose weight and they are always just thin no matter what!

However, excess weight is one of those things that lifestyle can heavily control. If you are genetically predisposed to being overweight but are an elite athlete – running marathons, working out, and eating healthy – you aren’t going to be overweight.

What this means is that if you are taking health actions personalized for you, then even if you have a high risk for these traits, they likely won’t ever show up.

In my opinion, all cases of obesity, fatty liver, high blood pressure, and high blood sugar can be fixed with the optimal diet, lifestyle and supplement regimen for that individual.

When it comes to these topics, genetics plays a role in how hard you have to work to keep them in control.

For example, I have very low risk for obesity – 4th percentile. I never was overweight and never thought about it, to be honest. However, because of my health practices, I also have a visible six pack which would not have occurred otherwise.

Predispositions to being overweight can all be overcome with the proper health approach.

Genetics can help you build the optimal life based on YOUR body

We’ve just launched brand new Summary Reports, which look at all of our health reports that fit under one health topic, combine it into one easy to read report, and give you life-changing insights and recommendations.

So, in terms of weight, we have a Diet & Nutrition Summary Report that will help you build the perfect meal plan for YOUR body.

Here’s what my optimal macronutrient split is based on my DNA:

The report also takes it one step further by also showing you your susceptibility to micronutrient deficiencies, among other things.

My genes tell me that I’m more likely to be deficient in Vitamin B2.

And it’s very accurate, as I had my blood tests done recently and was low on B2, even though I was eating the recommended amount.

Because my genes predispose me to lower levels, I need to eat more than the recommended amount.

So, I used the personalized recommendations in my Diet & Nutrition Report to see what I should implement in my diet, and since then my levels have been in the optimal range.

Sneak peek: In the next few weeks, we’re going to be releasing a fully functional meal plan in this report, which will build out actual schedules of breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals that are perfect for your genes and your goals.

There’s also a Fitness Summary Report that will give you the optimal workout split for the best results.

These Summary Reports Are Only The Beginning

We’ve currently released over 15 Summary Reports covering topics like Sleep, Metabolic Health, Brain Health, and so much more.

If you sign up for SelfDecode today, you’ll get access to ALL of the current and future Summary Reports, and:

  • 300+ Health & Trait Reports
  • Unlimited access to Lab analyzer tool – upload your labs and track your results just like I did with testosterone
  • Access to Personalized Genetics Blog – over 600 blogs that change based on your DNA
  • Personalized supplement formula – instantly created based on your unique genes
  • SNP & Gene Explorer
  • Lifestyle Analyzer
  • NEW! Ancestry – discover where you’re from and track your maternal lineage (Only available on Premium Plan)

Unlock the power of your genetics and build the optimal life for you.


About the Author

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen flipped the script on conventional and alternative medicine…and it worked. Growing up, he suffered from inflammation, brain fog, fatigue, digestive problems, insomnia, anxiety, and other issues that were poorly understood in traditional healthcare. Frustrated by the lack of good information and tools, Joe decided to embark on a learning journey to decode his DNA and track his biomarkers in search of better health. Through this personalized approach, he discovered his genetic weaknesses and was able to optimize his health 10X better than he ever thought was possible. Based on his own health success, he went on to found SelfDecode, the world’s first direct-to-consumer DNA analyzer & precision health tool that utilizes AI-driven polygenic risk scoring to produce accurate insights and health recommendations. Today, SelfDecode has helped over 100,000 people understand how to get healthier using their DNA and labs.
Joe is a thriving entrepreneur, with a mission of empowering people to take advantage of the precision health revolution and uncover insights from their DNA and biomarkers so that we can all feel great all of the time.


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