We often take digestion for granted. A lot of us assume that we can eat whatever we want, and our bodies will simply digest and utilize what we put into them. Unfortunately, there are a lot of factors that can affect digestion and gut health in general.
After dealing with some gut issues this past year (bloating, nausea and food intolerances), I spoke with my doctor about what might be going on. After learning about all of the invasive testing that could be done to figure out what’s happening, I decided to do a little research on my own.
Quick Facts Before Buying Genova or Viome to Test Your Gut Microbiome
Overview of the Viome Gut Health Test
Viome’s Gut Intelligence Health Test requires a stool sample, which is then analyzed for microbes and mRNA. This information is then used within the Viome information central database to provide you with results about your current gut health, the bacteria that is present in your gut, what foods might be bothering you, the type of diet you should follow, what’s causing your inflammation, and so on. The company has a very fast turnaround time, sending you results in just two to three weeks after receiving your sample.
I’ve done some reading and research on gut health in the past, but it wasn’t until I was experiencing symptoms of my own that I really started to dig into what goes on inside our digestive system. I knew many of my symptoms were related to my gut health is some way, but I had no idea the connection that exists between the gut and immune response, mood, etc.
There are a lot of tests that a doctor can perform to see what’s going on in your gut. I was told all about a gastric emptying study, endoscopy, upper GI series and various imaging tests. I’m more of a hands-off kind of girl, so I wanted to use something as non-invasive as possible to figure out why I felt the way I felt, but also what I could do about it.
I came across Viome’s Gut Intelligence Health Test. It requires a stool sample, which is then assessed to spot things like bad bacteria, pathogens, food intolerances and more. The information that you receive in your results should help you make appropriate changes so that you feel better overall. I learned all about the bacteria that are in my gut, from the good to the bad. I really found the food recommendations to be interesting. While I don’t have any confirmed food allergies, there are a number of foods that just don’t seem to sit well with me. I learned that while adding spinach to my smoothies may increase my iron intake, my gut doesn’t like digesting it.
I was given recommendations for the supplements that Viome offers after you complete their gut health test. I was able to acquire prebiotics and probiotics that are tailored to my gut health. I noticed a difference in how I felt after just a couple of weeks. I experienced less bloating and gas and no longer had a super-hard belly after eating.
What I Liked
- Viome sent me my results really quickly.
- You get a lot of different information about your gut health and how that impacts other areas of your body.
- I was surprised to read about how my gut health could be affecting my mood and mental health.
- You can purchase personalized prebiotics and probiotics based on your test results.
What I Didn’t Like
- You have to provide a stool sample, but that’s pretty standard for gut health tests.
- It’s an expensive purchase, but it’s worth the investment.
Overviewing Genova Gut Health Test
The Genova Gut Health Test is somewhat similar to what Viome offers. However, there are three different tiers of testing that you can choose from. I decided to purchase their Preferred Test, which isn’t the basic option, but it’s also not the highest tier. Preferred provides you with a wider look at your microbiome. You’ll receive information on supportive therapies that you may benefit from.
The Genova brand is pretty descriptive regarding what your test results mean. However, I feel like I got more test scores with Viome. This tier of testing let me know how my microbiome is affecting digestion and inflammation, in addition to some other areas of the body. It covers the presence of yeast, bacteria and parasites. Honestly, I would have liked to learn more based on the amount of money this test costs. You can make some changes once you learn about your results, but they’re minimal.
What I Liked
- You can choose what level of testing you want performed.
- Therapeutic options are provided as part of your results.
- Your symptoms can be explained by possible bacterial imbalances that are spotted.
- You may be able to pay for this test using your HSA or FSA account.
What I Didn’t Like
- You pretty much have to invest in the highest-level test in order to receive a diverse range of results.
- This is an expensive option, especially if you choose the highest tier.
- Your results will come in anywhere between 7 and 27 days.
I tried both of these products with great results. Collecting the sample is pretty much the same for both companies. The differences exist in the results that you receive. Genova mainly provides results for digestion and inflammation. I feel like Viome was a lot more insightful, taking into account my microbiome as a system that affects my whole body.
The cost of Viome’s Gut Intelligence Test is currently $159, marked down from $259. You also have the option of signing up for their subscription, which provides you with monthly deliveries of prebiotics and probiotics. The cost of that is $69.95 per month.
Genova’s basic-level Standard test is $360. If you upgrade to the Preferred test, it costs $105 more. The Premier test costs $505, plus the original fee. It’s definitely one of the more expensive gut health tests I’ve seen, but their results really don’t warrant this price point.
Main Differences Between Viome and Genova
The cost of these two testing companies is very different. Viome provides you with informative results at just a fraction of the cost of Genova’s tests. I actually liked how Viome laid out their results better than Genova, so I’d save your money and go for the cheaper option.
Comparing Results: Which Gut Health Test Was Better: Viome or Genova?
Viome’s more than 20 gut health test scores, in addition to supplement recommendations and dietary information, were more than enough to help me get my gut health back on track. I like that you can source your supplements from them, eliminating having to search for something that works once you’ve received your results.
I usually base my recommendation on the value that you get from a certain product. Viome provides a much better value compared to Genova. Viome really doesn’t leave much to be desired. I learned plenty about my microbiome. I loved the results that explained what I should and shouldn’t be eating. Not to mention, their supplements are very high quality and effective. I didn’t notice any kind of gas or bloating once I started taking them, which is common with other prebiotics and probiotics.
Choose Viome If…
Choose Genova If…