You have to understand your own personal DNA. Don’t do things because I do them or Steve Jobs or Mark Cuban tried it. You need to know your own brand and stick to it - Gary Vaynerchuk
We all want to know who we are. For most of us, it’s a lifelong quest that we only find the answers to as we’re stumbling along on our individual paths, and even then we’re lucky if we find even a fraction of the solutions that we’ve been searching for.
Some infinitely wise old soul once said that life wasn’t about the destination, it was about the journey and the discoveries that you make along the way.
While that sounds fine in principle, it isn’t s philosophy that most people can, or will find any solace in. In order to make the most of life’s journey, the more you know about yourself, the more you’re ultimately going to enjoy it.
Without gaining the invaluable experience that life offers, how can we find out more about ourselves? How can we begin to understand who we really are?
As most of us are on the final biological step on our familial voyage, one of the easiest ways to find more about ourselves is by discovering as much as can about the history of, and the stories surrounding our, relatives’ lives.
As most families love to share stories, it isn’t difficult to unearth all sorts of secrets and half-hidden truths at family parties and gatherings.
Even though tittle-tattle can reveal all sorts of things that you might not have previously known about your nearest and dearest and yourself, if you want to find out who you really are, you’ll have to dig a little deeper.
Of course, there’s always genealogical records that you can spend hours, days, and weeks wading through, and they can, and will paint a more conclusive picture.
But if you really want to create a complete, and nearly infallible portrait of who you are and where you come from, the only way to successfully do it is with a DNA test. And the only way to get a DNA test is by getting it done with a DNA testing company like EasyDNA.
EasyDNA? Who Are They?
Unless you’ve spent the last decade living under a rock in the middle of the desert in Utah, you’ll probably be aware that DNA testing has become increasingly popular for a whole host of different reasons.
The unwavering, and continued interest, and undiminished popularity of DNA testing has led to the materialization of an ever-increasing number of companies offering a variety of DNA testing services, which makes it increasingly difficult to know which brand to put your genetic faith in and trust to handle your DNA samples with dignity, due diligence, and respect.
They’re all perfectly valid concerns, and as we shared them, when we decided to have our DNA tested we spent weeks tirelessly researching as many DNA testing companies as we possibly could before we finally settled on EasyDNA.
In the fifteen years since they first started commercial testing, EasyDNA has grown into a globally recognized brand with offices and testing facilities in more than thirty countries.
A leading provider of genetic testing, this American based company uses an extremely focused team of scientists, medical facilities, and private practitioners to ensure that it never fails to deliver, and always lives up to, the incredibly high standards of customer care and service that they pride themselves on delivering.
It was these levels of assured customer care and discretion that convinced us that we were making the right choice by electing to choose, and trust, EasyDNA.
The fact that they actually had a dedicated customer care team on hand just helped to convince us that we were making the right choice.
Within minutes of making an inquiry, we were contacted by a representative who was more than happy to talk to us about the company and the testing procedure and everything that it would involve from both parties, which in this case was us and EasyDNA.
Once we’d been walked through every step of the procedure and learned more about the company (who have, at the request of law enforcement agencies and officials even helped to investigate some well known, high profile criminal cases) and had our minds set at ease, we were ready to proceed.
We should also mention the talk of their involvement in legal proceedings slightly concerned us and as such we enquired further about their position regarding client privacy and samples, and following a frank discussion were left in no doubt about their position on the matter.
Under no circumstances would EasyDNA ever share a sample provided by a client with an outside agency, organization, or body without the express permission of the customer in question. This probably helps to explain why the test involved the amount of paperwork that it did.
After running through a list of the available tests, the one that we chose was the Ancestral Origins, mainly because we’ve always had a yearning to find out where we really came from and where our family story started.
EasyDNA also offers a more in-depth addition to this test, which for a supplementary fee promised to further breakdown our genetic origins and present them on an easy-to-read and understand pie graph, which would present and highlight our ancestral origins.
Never able to resist a bargain, and having a strange affiliation for graphs, we happily paid the extra fee and waited for our testing kit to arrive.
It took a couple of days to turn up, but when it did we were surprised by how easy it was to actually provide the sample and send it back to EasyDNA.
Most testing companies use the same method of testing, which is a simple swab based sample, and EasyDNA follows an incredibly similar route to their competition.
Okay, so it’s exactly the same, but we knew it would be as we’d already spoken to the customer representative about what it would entail and what we’d have to do when the kit arrived.
With the paperwork signed and all the relevant signatures and ticks added to the right boxes, we moved to the next stage, which for us at least, was the easiest part of the process.
It was a swab based test, so we opened the provided swab and carefully took a sample of saliva by rubbing the swab on the inside of our cheek.
Yes, it’s an oral sample and yes you’ll have to put the swab in your mouth to provide the sample, but’s easy and painless and takes less than a hot Texas minute to do.
Once we’d taken our sample, we took the swab and carefully placed it in the sterile containment vessel that came as part of the kit.
We then sealed that sample in the pre-paid envelope that was also supplied as part of the kit, took it to the post office, and left it in the capable hands of the USPS to deliver our sample to EasyDNA.
Having been reassured that we’d receive our results within three to five days of our sample arriving at EasyDNA, we figured that given the speed of Uncle Sam’s delivery service, that they’d turn up a couple of weeks after we sent them in, so we sat back and started the fourteen-day countdown.
Having factored a two-week wait into the equation, we were more than a little surprised to get our results back a lot faster than we were expecting to, as they turned up ten days after we’d mailed them to EasyDNA.
We were also more than a little surprised by our results as we don’t come from where we thought we did, but that’s another story for another day as we’re not quite ready to share our new and exciting ancestral story just yet.
As the representative promised, the results were easy to understand and were laid out in a straightforward and simple to follow format.
Everything that they promised, they came through with, and the service that they provided absolutely lived up to our, admittedly, high expectations.
It isn’t all good news though, as even though the service that EasyDNA provided and our experience of being tested by them was exemplary, it wasn’t cheap.
In fact, it was exactly the opposite and, with the additional charge for the more in-depth test (the pie chart is actually very nice, and was one of the most surprising aspects of our results), it forced the final price into a budgetary bracket that while not completely uncomfortable, was a little beyond what we thought we’d end up paying.
And while we’re on the subject, even though they offer payment terms, the sheer number of extras and additional services that EasyDNA advertise on their site is a little alarming as it appears that there isn’t a fixed price for anything.
That said, they do provide a level of customer service that’s extraordinary and while their prices are far higher than those of most of their competition, they do treat their customers with the dignity and respect that you’d expect from any company who provides the same sort of service that EasyDNA does.
Would we use them again? Almost certainly, but if we did, we’d try and negotiate a lower rate with the representative when they called.
The Other Tests
While most DNA testing companies only offer a limited number of testing options, EasyDNA has an incredibly comprehensive list of tests that will tell you everything that you’ll ever want to know about you and your family.
They even offer a pet testing service that'll help you to identify where your four-legged best friend’s family came from, and which breeds played in his arrival.
Given the number of tests that they offer, we thought we’d run a few of them to give you a brief overview of the full service that EasyDNA offers.
An offshoot of the Ancestral test, this test uses the mitochondrial DNA (which is the DNA that comes directly from your mother) that’s extracted from the sample that you send to EasyDNA to trace your mother’s ancestral lineage and presents a clearer picture of where your mother’s side of the family comes and originally came, from.
It’s a comprehensive and exhaustive test that can pinpoint, with ninety-nine percent accuracy, where your mother’s family originated. And it’ll also shed a little light on the stories that your grandmother used to tell you and finally reveal how truthful they were.
Similar to the maternal test, the paternal lineage test (which isn’t the same as a paternity test, and shouldn’t be used as one) traces your father’s lineage by testing and comparing the Y-DNA (the DNA that comes from your male parent) against EasyDNA’s global database of samples to narrow the origins of your male ancestors to specific global region.
Cheaper than the maternal test, because we suspect it’s easier to test Y-DNA than mtDNA, it’s an easy and straightforward way to find out how much truth there was in your dad’s tales of the old country.
EasyDNA says that this is the easiest and fastest way to find out if you have any doubts, the truth about your paternity. It’s a test that they also offer to parents who for one reason or another might have a reason to question the paternity of their offspring.
Ninety-nine point nine percent accurate, it’ll shatter any illusions you might have about who your father is with a simple swab test. The truth may well set you free, but sometimes it’s better not to know, as some truths can, and often have ruined people’s lives.
Just one of the many pets centric tests that EasyDNA offers (which include genetic age testing and paternity tests) it’s an easy way to finally, and once and for all, identify the specific breed traits that drive your mongrel and make them who they are.
And, under the umbrella of their pet tests, EasyDNA also offers a brace if similar feline and allergy tests.
So, if you need to confirm a specific pet allergy, you can order the kit and find out if you really are allergic to Fido, or if that was just another yarn that your parents liked to spin to stop you asking them if you could have a dog.
This is the test that genuinely made us rethink our ideas about genetic health testing.
While we’re firm advocates of the idea that you should always know as much about yourself as possible, we’ve always been reluctant to opt into any sort of test that probes our genetic susceptibility to illness and disease.
We’ve always subscribed to a what will be, will be philosophy, as it was the best way to keep our insurance premiums at an affordable level.
‘Karmagenes Is based on a behavioral genetics model that favors nature over nurture and reinforces the idea that your genetics, rather than the way that you’re raised, help to determine who you are and who you will eventually become.
The test reveals the markers that point to certain personality traits and types, which make you more inclined to behave and react in predictable and measurable ways when you’re happy or sad, or under pressure, or when you find yourself in the sort of situations, that unfortunately, are part of life's unrelenting forward journey.
If you really want to know who you are, and who you could potentially, and eventually become, this is the test that we’d recommend you take over every other option that EasyDNA offers. Did we take it?
That would be telling, but given what you already know about us, what do you think? Knowledge is power, and the more you know about yourself, the more powerful you’ll be when you’re faced with the opportunity to create your own destiny.
EasyDNA - Our Conclusion
The sheer volume of available tests that EasyDNA offers can seem a little overwhelming when you first take the time to explore the services that they can and do provide.
That said, they have an incredibly helpful, and responsive customer advice team on hand to help guide you through every step of the testing process and all of the services that they provide.
While it’s true that they are more costly than most other DNA testing services, as an old aunt of ours was so fond of saying, “You get what you pay for in life”.
It was her way of saying that nothing in life is free and that if you want to get the best quality of service, then ultimately you’re going to have to pay a higher price for it.
Do we feel like we received an adequate level for the price we paid?
Absolutely, and thanks to EasyDNA we not only understand far more about the testing process than we ever thought we would, but we also found out where we came from, and a possible explanation of how we got to where we are now.
And at the end of the day, that’s all we wanted to know, and to us, that information was worth its weight in gold.