Epigenetics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (and in French: Épigénétique - Wikipédia )
Landes Bioscience Journals: Epigenetics
Environmental epigenetics: prospects for studying epigenetic mediation of exposure
All you ever wanted to know about epigenetics in the links above. I was really excited when I first learned about epigenetics a few years ago, but it is not the magic bullet it seems. It is REAL, but past eating a good, clean diet, avoiding toxins, sleeping good, getting exposure to sunlight, and exercising it is mostly out of our control. The biggest problem being there is no way to test how we are doing or see how changes we make effect our epigenetics.
You will see the term DNA methylation throughout any discussion of epigenetics, DNA methylation is a biochemical process that is important for normal development in living organisms. It involves the addition of a methyl group to the 5 position of the cytosine pyrimidine ring or the number 6 nitrogen of the adenine purine ring (cytosine and adenine are two of the four bases of DNA). This modification can be inherited through cell division. DNA methylation is essential for normal development and is associated with a number of key processes including genomic imprinting, X-chromosome inactivation, suppression of repetitive elements, and carcinogenesis.
It would be wonderful to be able to say, "Eat tuna 3 times a week to prevent DNA methylation transcription errors that cause cancer", but nobody can say that.
What can be said is, "Eating a diet high in toxins, with unbalanced omega 3:6 ratio, can cause DNA methylation problems which could result in diseases."
I think the term 'epi-genetics' is being used as a buzz word and no one can really explain how our diet can effect it in ways we can predict other than the basics.