Homework Help

"Genetics load the gun, lifestyle pulls the trigger"Can you please explain this...

user profile pic

falsefantasy | Student, Grade 9 | Salutatorian

Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:50 AM via web

dislike 0 like
"Genetics load the gun, lifestyle pulls the trigger"

Can you please explain this statement or tell the key points that can help me to write a passage of about 500 words?

Tagged with discussion, health

5 Answers | Add Yours

user profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 14, 2013 at 2:42 PM (Answer #2)

dislike 0 like

What this means is that the genes that you inherit make you more prone to having certain medical problems (since this is in "Health" I assume that is what you are talking about).  For example, if you have a family history of diabetes, you may be more likely to get that disease.  In that way, the "gun is loaded."  But you might not actually get diabetes.  If you are very careful with your diet and lifestyle, you can put it off.  Conversely, if you are not careful, you can "pull the trigger" and cause the disease to happen.

user profile pic

tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted February 14, 2013 at 8:12 PM (Answer #3)

dislike 0 like

That is a very interesting quote. However, it seems to be a loaded one because the emphasis in the wording suggests that a trigger will be pulled one way or another--as if peaceful people will also pull a trigger at some point in their lives. I like post #2 for applying it to another situation other than guns, though. As far as health is concerned, there are certain risk factors that can accelerate the production of a disease as stated above. This brings up the social question of Nature vs. Nurture. How much do our genes affect our behavior? Does a child learn to hit someone else by being hit, or is it just nature for us to want to solve a problem by hitting? There certainly must be a balancing act between the two (nature vs. nurture) because someone can have a talent for singing whereas someone else might not. However, could the talentless singer purchase lessons and win in a competition over the talented singer? Sure.

user profile pic

litteacher8 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:49 PM (Answer #4)

dislike 0 like

Your body and quality of life is affected by who you were when you were born and what happened to you in your life.  You can be genetically pre-disposed to something like heart disease, but if you eat well you can avoid it.  However, if you eat a lot of salty and fatty foods, you will be shooting the gun and causing your heart problems to be more likely.

user profile pic

e-martin | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 17, 2013 at 5:57 PM (Answer #5)

dislike 0 like

To paraphrase: Though genetic disposition can create a greater likelihood of the onset of certain diseases and conditions, lifestyle can be the determining factor in deciding a person's physical health relating to these dispositions (predispositions).

Example: If a person is genetically disposed to be at risk of developing anemia due to the sickle cell trait, he or she can avoid developing anemia by adjusting diet to include significant amounts of iron.  

 

user profile pic

wannam | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted February 19, 2013 at 3:52 PM (Answer #6)

dislike 0 like

We might be prone to certain diseases or disorders based on our heritage and genetic make-up, but often it is our lifestyle that tips the scales.  Type II Diabetes is often given as an example here.  Just because diabetes runs in your family does not necessarily mean you will have it, but it does make a person more likely to contract the disorder than someone who does not have a family history of diabetes.  Eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight and staying away from excessive sugar on a regular basis can help.  Of course, a person could do all these things and still have diabetes, but any lifestyle choices will shape the effect and manageability of the disorder. 

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes