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Genetic Counselors and You

Genetic Counselors and You

By National Society of Genetic Counselors

Brought to you by the National Society of Genetic Counselors, Genetic Counselors and You answers your genetic health questions, by genetic counselors. For more information about genetic counselors, including who they are and why you might see one, visit
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How Secure is Your DNA with At-Home Genetic Tests?

Genetic Counselors and YouApr 29, 2020

How Does Family History Impact My Risk for Diabetes?

How Does Family History Impact My Risk for Diabetes?

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) estimated last year that around 1 in 10 Americans has diabetes. And since November is a time when we often get together with relatives, some of you may be wondering, “How worried should I be about Diabetes based on my family history?” This episode will help to answer some of those questions.

In this episode, we invited Dr. Toni Pollin to share her thoughts. Dr. Pollin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Nutrition and in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where she also leads a PhD/MS Track in Human Genetics.  She is a board-certified genetic counselor and has a PhD in human genetics.  For over 20 years, she has studied the genetic factors and their interaction with lifestyle, pharmaceutical, and environmental factors in  type 2 diabetes and related cardiometabolic traits as well as conducted translational studies in how to identify, diagnosed, and promote individualized therapy for highly genetic diabetes subtypes known as monogenic diabetes.  Her work has been funded by the American Heart Association and several NIH institutes, and she has authored or co-authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications.

Nov 12, 202122:54
Do My Genes Impact my Risk for Prostate Cancer?
Sep 09, 202117:39
My Nutrition, My Genes

My Nutrition, My Genes

With areas opening back up across the country and world, many are looking forward to going outside during the summer. After being stuck at home during lockdown, many might be thinking more about their “summer body” and wondering whether a DNA test can optimize their nutritional health.

In this episode, we talk with Jill West, a Registered Dietician Nutritionist, to share her thoughts.

Jill has over 25 years of experience as a registered dietitian nutritionist, and has her own private practice Jill West Nutrition Consulting serving clients throughout the US. Prior to starting her own practice, she published the book, 400 Moms, about helping busy parents feed their kids. She has worked in several major medical centers including Joslin Diabetes Center, University of California, San Francisco Medical Center and University of California, Davis Health System.

Jul 08, 202118:54
How Genetics and the COVID-19 Pandemic Impact Mental Health

How Genetics and the COVID-19 Pandemic Impact Mental Health

The COVID-19 pandemic, racial uprisings, and the resulting economic recession have impacted many people’s mental health. One study suggests that ~4 in 10 adults in the U.S. have reported symptoms of anxiety or depressive disorder, up from ~1 in 10 adults before the pandemic ( How do genetic and environmental factors impact our mental health? What should we do to maintain our mental health, especially during this time? In this episode, we invited Ramona Moldovan PhD, a genetic counselor and clinical psychologist, to share her thoughts in honor of  mental health awareness month.

For more information on the topics discussed in this episode, visit and the following webpages:

May 26, 202130:59
A Genetics Expert Helps Us Make Sense of COVID-19 Vaccines
Mar 30, 202127:48
Demystifying Insurance to Unlock Genetic Counseling and Genetic Testing Opportunities
Nov 12, 202033:08
Addressing Systemic Racism and Disparities in Genetic Testing

Addressing Systemic Racism and Disparities in Genetic Testing

We want to hear from you! Please take a moment to fill out this short 60-second survey to help us learn more about our audience!

During this global pandemic, social inequities and health disparities are being exposed and discussed more than ever. For some, it’s the first time we’ve talked about social justice or  systemic racism in healthcare. For others, we’ve felt their effects for some time. These inequities and disparities also exist within the genetic testing experience. In this episode, we speak to expert researcher and genetic counselor, Altovise T. Ewing, PhD, LCGC, to raise awareness of these issues for people having genetic testing, so they can better navigate them. We also suggest ways that genetic testing developers, marketers, and medical professionals can be aware of and work to dismantle these inequities.

For more information on the topics discussed in this episode, visit and the following resources:


Sep 30, 202035:17
The "Uncertainty" of Genetic Testing
Jun 30, 202020:34
How Secure is Your DNA with At-Home Genetic Tests?
Apr 29, 202022:38
How to Make the Most of Your DNA Test Holiday Gift
Feb 24, 202022:35
Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Oct 18, 201931:39
What Genetic Counselors Don't Do
Aug 26, 201919:15
Genetic Counselors and Your Healthcare Team
May 31, 201916:10
What is a Genetic Counselor?
Mar 13, 201925:44