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Nature Vs Nurture – The Battle Between Genes And Environment

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The Battle Between Genes And Our Environment

 

If there is one question that has baffled scientists and doctors the most, it is the nature vs. nurture question. It asks whether our genes or our surrounding environment has the biggest effect on the way in which we live our lives. The debate between the two has been raging on for some time now, so are the experts any closer to answering this age-old argument? Well, as a matter of fact, it looks like they might have to argue for some time yet as they still can’t decide on the answer!

 

As this debate is based on science, culture, and also slightly in philosophy, it can be very difficult to come to an agreement when looking at different experiments, and some experts believe that certain testing can be biased. But what do we already know about the nature vs. nurture debate? Here are some points that you may not be aware of.

 

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Nature vs. Nurture In Mental Health

 

Most of the studies that have looked into the effects of genes and the environment have focused on mental health. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be enough significant evidence to suggest that one wins over the other. When you look at people who stay in rehabilitation facilities to fight an addiction, such as the Recovery Village, you will find that there are lots of patients who have developed an addiction after a traumatic event in their past.

For instance, the death of a close family relative, or getting into a lot of debt. This is obviously nurture having an effect as their mental health problems are caused by their environment.

 

However, it is clear that it isn’t only nurture that plays a part in our mental health. That’s because there are some mental health conditions that are passed on through generations of a family. These include ones such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Studies show that people are more likely to develop these conditions if any of their parents or grandparents suffer from them too.

 

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Nature vs. Nurture In Our Appearance

 

When it comes to our appearances and physical features, you may think that it is only our genes that have a say in the results. And this is largely true, but there are also some instances when the environment has a say in it too. For example, our hair color is decided by our genes when we are in the womb, but once we are born the environment around us can sometimes affect the hair and alter its color.

This is also the case with height and weight. An example of this is the fact that if you overeat, you have the potential to override your genes and put on a lot of weight that you wouldn’t naturally carry.

 

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Nature vs. Nurture In Intelligence

 

You might have heard the saying that children inherit their intelligence from their mothers. But is that really true? Well, as with the other points above, there is no concrete evidence to suggest that either nature or nurture win. Generally speaking, children who have intelligent parents also do well throughout their school and college lives. However, there is nothing to stop them being influenced by other students, and it is possible that those who should be intelligent children end up giving into peer pressure and neglect their studies.

In this situation, their intelligence is compromised. Similarly, there is also the chance of children who have less intelligent parents really pushing themselves at school and doing a lot better than expected. But, of course, there are also some other environmental factors that could affect someone’s intelligence.

Lots of studies show that eating lots of Omega 3 Fatty Acids can greatly enhance someone’s brainpower. It is thought that people who get lots of these acids in their diet will have a better intelligence than those who don’t. There are some other foods that are said to affect intelligence.

 

So, as you can see, there isn’t much chance that this argument about genes and environment is going to be settled anytime soon. Thankfully, there are plenty of scientific studies and experiments that are being carried out to try and take this theory even further.

 

At the end of the day, though, who really cares whether genes or our environment has a bigger effect on who we are? We are who we are, and we should be self-confident enough to be happy with that! After all, there is only one you on the planet, which makes you extra special!  

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2 Comments on "Nature Vs Nurture – The Battle Between Genes And Environment"

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Laurel Santos
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Great post as always! I’ve been following your blog for quite some time and I really love your writing.

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