The Best DNA Test Kits, According to Dr. Peter Attia

Written by Samantha Odake | Last updated:

What does Dr. Peter Attia think about DNA tests?

In a recent episode of his podcast, The Peter Attia Drive, Dr. Peter Attia engages in an insightful Ask Me Anything session where he explores the topic of genetics and the value it brings to understanding our health risks.

During the podcast, Dr. Attia discusses a range of topics revolving around genetics, including why it’s important, how DNA influences our biology and traits, and the complexities of polygenic risk assessment. He also addresses the question of variations among direct-to-consumer tests and discusses the pros and cons of 6 different companies.

The best genetic tests according to Dr. Peter Attia

Dr. Attia recommends taking into consideration factors such as cost, privacy, quality, and the amount of information provided when choosing a DNA test for your health. The six DNA companies mentioned by Dr. Peter Attia are listed below.

Dr. Peter Attia’s top two DNA tests:

Other companies mentioned:

  • 23andMe
  • Sequencing.com
  • Nebula Genomics
  • InsideTracker

Dr. Peter Attia is not affiliated with any of the companies listed in this article.


SelfDecode has a different approach than other health DNA tests by providing targeted diet, lifestyle, and supplement recommendations based on a person’s genetic risks. With a database of hundreds of recommendations, users also have the flexibility to search for any recommendation to see how it helps their genetic risks.

SelfDecode uses a process called genetic imputation to analyze up to 200 million genetic variants with a 99.7% accuracy rate. SelfDecode offers over 650 DNA health & trait reports covering a variety of topics such as gut health, mental health, cardiovascular health, and many others.

In the podcast, Dr. Attia also highlights that SelfDecode’s health recommendations are based on the predicted impact a given recommendation will have on your health and the amount of evidence supporting it.

See below an example of SelfDecode’s personalized recommendations feature:

If you need help interpreting your results, SelfDecode also offers 1:1 personalized consultations to members. This service is available to users who purchased a SelfDecode DNA kit and those who uploaded their genetic data.

One of Peter’s biggest frustrations with most DTC tests is the lack of services available to help explain what’s going on.

SelfDecode is a HIPAA-compliant company and never sells genetic data or shares it with third parties. Most importantly, SelfDecode honors customer requests to completely delete their information from their database.

HIPAA is basically “God of all things” that pertain to privacy and data-sharing policies.” – Peter Attia

  • Cost: $316-$418 (then $9.99/month – billed annually)
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: 200 million
  • Collection method: Cheek swab

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Very large number of SNPs tested
  • Allows uploads of DNA data from a few leading competitor companies
  • Very strong privacy policy: a HIPAA-compliant genetic testing company that allows you to permanently delete your data at any time
  • Health recommendations based on results include estimates of the predicted impact of a given recommendation and the amount of evidence supporting it
  • Offers 1:1 consultations with health coaches to aid in interpreting results (for a fee)
  • Requires an annual subscription to access results reports
  • Tests not available in all states (unavailable in Arizona, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island)*

*DNA tests are available worldwide, including in the states of Arizona, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island. The limitations referred to by Dr. Peter Attia only refer to other lab tests (i.e. blood, urine, etc.) sold by SelfDecode.

Toolbox Genomics

Toolbox Genomics offers epigenetic testing in addition to genetic testing and has easy-to-follow reports, according to Dr. Attia.

However, he also mentions that certain health scores or metrics reported, particularly those derived from epigenetic data, have raised concerns due to their reliance on debated science. Examples mentioned in the podcast include biological age, memory age, and inflammation status based on methylation status.

  • Cost: $199-$299
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: 1,000 SNPs
  • Collection method: Saliva sample

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Also offers epigenetic testing
  • Easy-to-follow summary reports, as well as more detailed data appendices for practitioners
  • Personalized health recommendations based on results and adjusted based on follow-up epigenetic tests
  • Some of the health scores/metrics reported (especially those based on epigenetic data) are based on shaky and debated science (e.g., “biological age,” “memory age,” and “inflammation status” based on methylation status)
  • To receive updates to health recommendations based on epigenetics, tests must be repeated regularly (they recommend every 3 months)


Dr. Peter Attia points out that 23andMe is a well-known company and one of the pioneers of DTC genetic tests. 23andMe also offers an extensive array of reports, ranging from 80 to 180 for individuals who sign up for the membership.

The reports provided by 23andMe are generally user-friendly and analyze a relatively large number of SNPs. However, there have been concerns raised over their privacy and data-sharing policy.

  • Cost: $119-$298
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: 650,000 SNPs
  • Collection method: Saliva sample

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Relatively large number of SNPs tested
  • Covers a wide variety of health and wellness areas—typically more than 150 reports on carrier tests and other reports
  • Good user interface
  • FDA-approved
  • Requires a premium subscription for access to all reports
  • Privacy concerns


One of the main points made by Dr. Peter Attia about Sequencing.com is that they offer affordable whole-genome sequencing. The platform operates as a marketplace that allows you to browse and shop their own reports and third-party applications.

During the podcast, Dr. Attia reveals that he underwent whole genome sequencing because of a health concern related to a family member. However, he points out that under different circumstances, he might not have pursued whole genome sequencing for himself, and shares that his genetic counselor agrees that it might have been unnecessary in his case.

Dr. Attia also caution users that, while Sequencing.com is HIPAA compliant, it does involve third-party facilities and apps that may not adhere to such strict privacy policies.

  • Cost: $399-$499
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: WGS
  • Collection method: Cheek swab

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Provides whole-genome sequencing
  • Allows free uploads of DNA test results from most other companies
  • Very strong privacy policy: a HIPAA-compliant genetic testing company that allows you to permanently delete your data at any time
  • The basic package is sequencing only. Most reports on specific traits or diseases require a subscription or additional fees, which are often expensive (from free up to ~$200)
  • Many of the tests for specific traits/diseases involve third-party test facilities and apps, which may not have such strict privacy policies as Sequencing.com

Nebula Genomics

Similar to Sequencing.com, Nebula Genomics also offers whole-genome sequencing and has a strong emphasis on privacy. However, the cost of the kits is high if compared to Sequencing.com and other genotyping providers.

Dr. Peter Attia also points out that the reports often include too much technical jargon that may not be as user-friendly as other options and there are no personalized health recommendations.

  • Cost: $99-$999
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: WGS
  • Collection method: Cheek swab

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Provides whole-genome sequencing
  • Strong emphasis on privacy
  • The cost of individual kits is high, and a subscription is required
  • Provide only marginally more reports on specific traits/diseases than companies relying on DNA genotyping
  • Reports are often criticized for using jargon and being incomprehensible for non-scientists
  • No personalized health recommendations


InsideTracker shares similarities with SelfDecode by offering insights derived from both DNA and lab data. However, it’s important to note that InsideTracker doesn’t offer DNA-based recommendations.

Dr. Peter Attia highlights the platform’s user-friendliness, but also mentions that there is a relatively limited scope when it comes to the number of SNPs tested.

  • Cost: $249
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: 261
  • Collection method: Cheek swab

Dr. Peter Attia’s Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Allows uploads of DNA data from a few leading competitor companies
  • Easy user platform
  • Also offers blood tests for lipids and other biomarkers of disease risk
  • Very few SNPs tested
  • Only provides health recommendations based on blood tests, not DNA tests

Bonus: Promethease

Promethease is an online genetic analysis tool. Users can upload their data from other companies to compare their DNA variations to published research.

Dr. Attia emphasizes a key feature in Promethease – the ability to arrange results based on the quality of evidence. He also underscores the importance of understanding the nature of evidence supporting the results.

Similarly, SelfDecode has recently introduced a new feature that allows you to categorize your reports by evidence levels on a scale of 1-5. Read more about quality of evidence.

  • Cost: $12 per report
  • Number of SNPs analyzed: 600,000 SNPs
  • Collection method: Does not offer DNA testing

Dr. Peter Attia on whole genome sequencing: is it useful?

One thing Dr. Peter Attia points out is how whole genome sequencing costs have dramatically decreased in the past 25 years. However, he still questions the utility of WGS for health optimization and longevity.

Dr. Attia also mentions the evolution of AI and computing power as key factors in helping us understand how deterministic the genome is for our healthspan and lifespan.

“That doesn’t mean at one point in the future it won’t make sense for everybody to have a whole genome sequence, but you’re not missing anything by not doing it today”, says Peter

Final thoughts

As his final piece of advice, Dr. Peter Attia emphasizes the importance of having a comprehensive understanding of your family history, particularly for traits that are influenced by multiple genes (polygenic traits).

Dr. Attia also touches on genetic testing for prenatal family planning and how this type of testing can be especially useful for individuals trying to conceive at later stages in life.

Ultimately, the decision to undergo genetic testing is a personal one that can be influenced by various factors including your health goals and family history. Dr. Attia’s insights serve as a guide to help you make informed choices that align with your unique health journey.

Listen to The Peter Attia Drive for a comprehensive understanding of genetics and its applications.

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