If you're curious about your ancestry, there are a lot of choices when it comes to at-home DNA testing kits. But these tests can be expensive, especially for versions that test for both health and ancestry. These three DNA testing kits on sale for Amazon Prime Day can make great presents for family or friends, or even help you figure out more about what's going on behind the scenes, genetically speaking.
I recently spent a few hours going down the rabbit hole of at-home DNA testing kits. My entire life, I've been told I am Irish and Italian. My Italian ancestors, who have an Italian last name that is still common in Italy, came to the U.S. from northern Italy via Brazil during the early 1900s. But then my cousin got the results from his DNA test and Italian was... not listed as one of the ethnicities. This has thrown my entire identity into question, which is why I'm super stoked to take advantage of these deals and can get to the bottom of this mystery.
One thing I learned when researching DNA testing kits is that some of the DNA testing companies list geographic regions versus countries because, historically, the borders of countries have changed a lot and some countries no longer exist. For example, Italy, Austria, and Hungary were all once part of the Ottoman Empire. When that empire fell, the borders of these three countries changed several times. This means that if the test returns results for countries using modern-day borders, it could likely say that my family is not from Italy because the part of Italy we're from was once part of Hungary. Confusing, right? The best DNA testing kit for you depends on what kind of information you're after.
There are kits that can trace your ancestry, kits that can test you for gene mutations that can increase your chances of developing certain cancers, and kits that can determine your personality traits based on your DNA. Some kits do all of the above. Here are three DNA testing kits on sale for Prime Day.
AncestryDNA is one of the most popular DNA testing kits. If you're into genealogy, Ancestry can help you build a family tree. It claims to have the world's largest collection of online records so you can trace your family's history via countries and geographical regions. You can also find other relatives who are in the Ancestry database. The catch with this DNA test is that you have to sign up for a monthly membership to use some of the features. So while this test is cheaper than others, it might cost you more in the long run.
2. 23andMe DNA Test
23andMe has a few different versions, but their health and ancestry option is their most comprehensive kit. It tests for ancestry, genetic health risks, and genetic variant carrier status. Use of the DNA relatives tool comes free with the purchase of your kit, so you can connect to other people related to you who are also in the 23andMe database.
This DNA testing kit gives you information about over 60 different genes. While it doesn't provide information about ancestry, it can help you assess health risks and how you might respond to medication, making it a good choice for someone who's already in touch with their family tree.
In addition to these three kits, Amazon Prime also has DNA testing kits for dogs and cats. If you want to explore your ancestry and Fluffy and Fido's as well, Amazon Prime Day is the day to get these tests at deep discounts. But before you spit into a tube, consider that you could uncover some family secrets. Make sure you're emotionally ready before jumping into the DNA testing pool. If you do learn something surprising or upsetting, some companies offer counseling to help you make sense of the results.