It’s a common habit to go through old family photos and share stories from past generations as a way to keep your memories alive and learn about your family history. But some may not have access to these photos and memories – or may want to delve deeper into them – and may resort to this. DNA testing services to build a more complete picture of their family tree.

AncestryDNA (a subsidiary of and 23andMe are two popular resources to help you know your family history. They both need a saliva sample and analyze your DNA to find out where your family came from. The analysis can detect relationships with other users based on the submitted samples. In addition, the analysis can also provide welfare and health reports with information on cancer risks, health trends, carrier status, and so on.

We tested two DNA testing kits. Here’s how to say which is best for you.

Read more: The best DNA testing kits in 2020: 23andMe, AncestryDNA and more compared


I tested the AncestryDNA kit, which cost about $ 109 after it was shipped (at the time of publication), and a saliva collection tube and cap, a return bag, and a prepaid return label box. To register the kit, I downloaded the Ancestry app and scanned the barcode on the side of the collection tube. You can also register your equipment online and simply enter the number manually.

When you create an account, the application requires your permission on a number of items, including permission to process the sample, whether you want to perform subsequent tests to store the sample, and to participate in the research. Research includes conducting surveys and questionnaires that claim that AncestryDNA will try to better understand human history and health.

Read more: What AncestryDNA has taught me about DNA, privacy, and the complex world of genetic testing

I refused permission to store my sample or participate in the research. AncestryDNA asks some questions about your health history. You can edit what public or private information becomes on the site and how you want it to appear to other users if it matches your DNA with other users. You will be able to review all the information before proceeding.

Ancestry has 16 million user profiles, compared to 23 and 10 million for Me, which in theory should lead to more accurate results. However, Ancestry does not use standard Y-chromosome and / or mitochondrial DNA methodologies as most others do, so we know less about how they actually analyze DNA.

After plugging in the tube, I mailed the kit and confirmed that it had been sent to the app. From the time the app was picked up in the kit lab to processing and so much more to say before I was told it was my results.

The AncestryHealth report was the first and distributed the Outstanding Health Outcomes, Health Outcomes, and Wellness Outcomes. The reports include information on the risks of cancer, the status of the carrier of diseases such as cystic fibrosis, and the health of your blood. Wellness reports are distributed, among other things, to provide information about vitamin levels.

AncestryHealth may meet possible health conditions, depending on the family history you have met or the variations detected in your DNA sample. However, the site repeatedly states that the report you receive is not a diagnosis. Health tests also do not have FDA approval.

Read more: In the future, your DNA will also not be sacred

Outside of the health report, the test created an Ethnicity Assessment report that showed the link to what regions of the world my ancestors probably associated with. AncestryDNA has calculated that my biggest connections have been to England, Wales and North West Europe. It also had flags in the Scottish Lowlands, northern England and Northern Ireland. This area of ​​the map was color-coded, along with others that were linked to my DNA. The AncestryDNA region list contains more than 1,000 regions tested by your sample; so you’ll see where your DNA didn’t even get the results. The report also included a brief history of each area.

AncestryDNA also tells you which other users match your DNA and other users. My aunt, who also used the website, named it as a Close Family. The app allowed me to compare our Ethnic budgets and allow me to send a message.

I already did the family tree on the Ancestry website, so it was interesting to link my DNA results to the tree. One disadvantage was that the genealogical tree aspect and the DNA aspect required two separate applications; however, the desktop version keeps everything in one place if you work in the browser.


Ancestry offers separate AncestryDNA and AncestryDNA Traits kits. AncestryDNA ($ 99) will calculate and break down the regions where your family was born. AncestryDNA Traits ($ 119) includes everything the previous kit has to offer, as well as how your genes affect your personal traits.

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I tested the Health and Antiquity kit when I posted it, along with a saliva collection tube and cap, a return bag, and a prepaid return label box. Like AncestryDNA, 23andMe also had to register the kit (in-app or online) before testing. I downloaded the app and scanned the barcode on the side of the pickup tube. You can also enter the code manually.

23andMe kit asked for permission on several items when I made an account, as did AncestryDNA. I saved my sample for future testing, participated in research, received health reports, and had the ability to share data on the steps in my fitness data app to give you a broader look at your activity. I have denied all of them except health reports.

Read more: A genealogy site that credits ID for helping the suspected Golden State Killer

Unlike Ancestry, 23andMe he does had FDA approval as a risk condition for certain genetic conditions and diseases. If you are interested in doing DNA testing for this, 23andMe is the best option.

The app tracked my sample trip to the lab and the DNA extraction process. In the last report I saw on the mobile app or online, 23andMe distributed the majority of my ancestors in European> Northwestern Europe> French and German, British and Irish. The app tested 216 populations to create the report.

23and I can display the results in a timeline, so you can see approximately the last generation of your newest ancestor for each region. For example, my results showed a small origin of Ashkenazi Jews, but my chronology indicated that the relative would have survived five or eight generations ago. You can also see the results as Chromosome Painting, which shows where a specific region on your chromosome is and how far it is.

Many aspects were analyzed in the results. For example, 23andMe gave me more information about each region that matched my DNA. Clicking on the icon for each country, 23andMe told me about the history and migration patterns of the region over time, and also gave me ways to get to know an culture, book an Airbnb to visit, and other features. 23andMe users I could search for possible relatives and found my mother’s cousin.

23andMe’s health reports included previous trends, carrier status, well-being, characteristics, and health action plan. They have studied Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, celiac disease and others. The laboratory would study certain genetic variants. As with AncestryDNA, 23andMe has determined that the test results are not a diagnosis or a guarantee that you will not be diagnosed with the disease later. The wellness report included interesting elements, whether you are sleepy or not, how much you move during your sleep, genetic weight, and other factors. The feature report was particularly interesting. These determined how likely I was to have a certain eye color, to hate cilantro, to have stains, to hate eating sounds, to bite mosquitoes and other things more. And a lot of it was correct! I would have to pay an extra with the AncestryDNA kit to be aware of these features.


If you choose 23andMe, you can choose from three different DNA testing kits – Ancestry and Traits Service ($ 99), Health and Ancestry Service ($ 199), and 23andMe Plus membership ($ 169 in advance and $ 29 annually). ancestral reports, relative finding possibilities, trait reports, and the construction of family trees. 23andMe Plus membership has only improved ancestral characteristics, pharmacogenetics reports, and consistent updates to existing reports. In addition, Health and Ancestry also includes carrier status reports, health trends, and welfare reports. You can request more health reports through the basic service for an additional $ 125.

Bottom line

It is known for the genealogical characteristics of the Ancestry family tree. When you use the DNA testing service and integrate these results, you can see everything in a browser. Unfortunately, the information is also divided into two mobile apps, which is not so helpful. But in general, Ancestry’s tools, including the ability to build a tree and link your health and vision to DNA, can certainly help paint a larger picture of a person’s background and help facilitate dialogue with newly found family members.

23andMe had an easier-to-use design, and presented the findings in a way that encourages you to immerse yourself in your (perhaps renewed) heritage. However, it does not have the power of Ancestry when it comes to building your family tree. I saw a planned tree, but it was October and only 23 and Me other users entered.

Since I knew the origins of the family, I can say that both kites seemed to give accurate results. If you want to learn your genetics and traits in an easy-to-read format or are especially looking for health information, I would go with 23andMe. But if you’re working on a family history project and already know the Ancestry platform, I’d do it with you instead.

To find out more, find out how I used technology to learn more about my family tree. You can also request a DNA test from other services for your pet, if you really want to.

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The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not relate to health or medical advice. Always consult your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider to clarify any questions you may have about your health condition or health goals.