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About Gene Food

“The more a law lays claim to universal validity, the less it does justice to the individual facts.”

Carl Jung

Founding team

Gene Food was founded in 2016 by health entrepreneur John O’Connor and Dr. Steven Brody, a prominent San Diego physician. While working with Dr. Brody as a patient, John saw the need for a personalized approach to nutrition when it became clear he didn’t fit into the usual health template.

Science first

Gene Food was founded with a science first approach. For the first two years of the company’s existence, the Gene Food team conducted research on the science of personalized nutrition. Our head of research and lead geneticist, Dr. Aaron Gardner, assembled a team to review hundreds of peer reviewed studies on genetics and nutrition, ranking the genes with the most scientific validation, and assigning each a Science Grade.

The product

Using the research and scoring system created in the exploratory phase, Dr. Gardner’s team built a proprietary nutrition algorithm which classifies customers into one of twenty diet types based on over 120 vetted genetic factors. Gene Food can score existing genetic data from providers like 23andme, or test customers for the first time.

Who we help

Since launching our product in 2018, we have helped close to 5,000 customers personalize their nutrition. Why do some people experience large increases in LDL when eating saturated fat, while others see little or no increase? These are the questions Gene Food is on a mission to help answer.

The future

The American public is bombarded every day with ever changing, and often conflicting, nutrition advice. While we do not believe genetics are the only factor in evaluating dietary choices, we do see genetics as a foundational tool to help people find lasting diet solutions. Personalized nutrition is the future, and we look forward to being a part of that future for many years to come.

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Core Values

  • Security

    Our website and software are fully HIPAA compliant and SSL encrypted, and our genetics laboratory in San Diego is CLIA certified. We never sell or share your genetic data with third parties.
  • Science

    Gene Food operates with a simple, scientific first approach. We are constantly reviewing the latest peer reviewed scientific research to improve our algorithm.
  • Empathy

    We understand what it is like to be confused, tired and overwhelmed with mountains of competing nutrition advice. We are here to offer practical, science based solutions for people who don’t know what to eat and don’t know where to turn for help.
  • Inclusion

    Gene Food is committed to diversity and inclusion. Our science team utilizes a research process that highlights often overlooked studies focusing on underrepresented communities, and this research is factored into our Science Grade scoring system.

Our Team

John O’Connor

John O’Connor

Founder

John O’Connor is the Founder of Gene Food and host of the Gene Food Podcast. Like many who make their way into the wellness world, John was inspired to create a platform that could empower people to find personalized health solutions after he realized his health and dietary needs didn’t fit the template offered by conventional nutrition and medicine.


Dr. Aaron Gardner

Dr. Aaron Gardner

Lead Geneticist & Head of Research

Dr. Aaron Gardner holds a BSc in Genetics, a Masters of Research in Medical and Molecular Biosciences as well as a doctorate in immunology. He has worked in a variety of medical research laboratories including those at Durham University and Newcastle University in the UK and Columbia University in New York. His work has concentrated on understanding the genetic modulation of various fibrotic disorders. Through his clinical experience, Aaron became fascinated with the potential for targeted personalized medicine to stem the tide of disease. His work at Gene Food is an extension of that passion. At Gene Food, Aaron created the scoring system used for Custom Nutrition Plans as well as the Guide to Nutrigenomics.


Danielle Moore

Nutritionist

Danielle Moore holds a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and a graduate degree in Nutrition. Danielle has seen firsthand the healing power of personalized nutrition in her successful journey to overcome an autoimmune condition. At Gene Food, Danielle weighs in on the nutritional impacts of some of the work we’re doing.


Leigh Matthews

Leigh Matthews

Features Writer, Nutritional Therapist, Researcher

Leigh Matthews holds a degree in Nutritional Therapy from the University of West London in the UK. She has been working as a medical writer since 2010 and in the natural health industry since 2006 and is the author of Eat to Beat Acne: how a plant-based diet can help heal your skin, as well as four novels. At Gene Food, Leigh is a features writer and indispensable member of the research team.


Dr. Dan Deakter, MD

Dr. Dan Deakter, MD

Medical Advisor

Dr. Dan Deakter, MD, holds a medical degree from the University of Pittsburgh Medical School. He trained in General Surgery at The Albert Einstein School of Medicine in NYC and is an ABEM certified Emergency Physician. His current medical practice is focused on improving health span and longevity for his patients. Dr. Dan brings 43 years of medical experience to the Gene Food team where he advises on product developments and editorial decisions.


Ned

Ned

Official Mascot

Ned O’Connor is an Australian Labradoodle and the official Gene Food mascot. Ned’s nutritional awakening began upon realizing he couldn’t tolerate poultry or beef based dog food. Making the switch to kibble made with fish as well as adding venison and sweet potato resolved Ned’s digestive issues and made him a believer in the personalized health revolution. When he’s not at work, Ned enjoys counter surfing, playing with tennis balls and napping on cool tile floors.

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