a A

the four blood types made easy

One of the most important aspects of health is the food we put in our bodies. Until recently, recommendations for food choices have mainly been based on the nutritional content of foods: how much of a particular vitamin or mineral does it contain, what is the fibre content, are the essential fatty acids unadulterated? Another trend has been to point an accusing finger at meat, whilst encouraging a greater consumption of grains. In my practice as a nutritionist, I have seen many type O patients for whom this type of macrobiotic diet has been a catastrophe. Relief was their understandable reaction on being told that not only was it okay for them to eat meat, but necessary if they wanted to be in good health. So should we be vegetarians or carnivores, follow the macrobiotic or paleolithic diet? What about the Mediterranean way of eating? However, the answer to the question of which diet suits us lies in who we are and not in what the diet is. What we eat interacts with each of us in a very particular way and that relationship is governed by our genetic makeup.

A food is not healthy or unhealthy per se. It interacts with us in a healthy or unhealthy manner. The work of Doctors James and Peter D’Adamo has enabled millions of people around the world to experience this. Peter D’Adamo has done a colossal job of furthering the findings of his father, Dr James D’Adamo: namely that your blood type (O, A, B or AB) is the key to what you should eat.

How Did These Findings Come About?

Dr James D’Adamo, a naturopathic physician, observed that while some people did well on the typical vegetarian diet recommended in renowned European health spas, others did not. Following this initial observation he spent many years trying different diets on each of his patients until eventually he surmised that there must be something in our blood that determines what we should be eating. Little by little, food choices according to ABO blood typing became obvious. Those with blood type A, it seemed, benefited from a virtually meat-free diet with protein provided by soya and fish, while Os did well on a meat-based diet that avoided grains and milk products. These findings set the stage for his son’s later scientific scrutiny.

Peter D’Adamo, a naturopathic physician in the making at that time (1980s), took advantage of university requirements to undertake research – and naturally he chose his father’s field. What he was looking for was any information that could connect blood types to certain diseases, and if such information would give any weight to his father’s ideas. Sure enough there it was. The prevalence of stomach cancer in blood type A was related to low gastric acid. This could explain why As should avoid meat – they did not produce enough gastric acid, which is essential for the complete digestion of animal protein. There was also relevant information on blood type O. This blood group is more prone to gastric ulcers – a condition usually caused by a highly acidic environment in the stomach. As James D’Adamo had discovered years before, Os could and should eat meat because they have the necessary acidic environment in the stomach to digest it properly.

This was just the beginning of the ongoing research into the relationship between ABO blood types and disease, and how selecting the right foods and living the right life can protect you.

Human Evolution and Blood Types

The four different blood types, O, A, B and AB, didn’t appear on earth all at the same time. The first three are a product of human evolution and the latter the consequence of As and Bs intermingling.

Man as we know him today appeared on this planet around 40,000BC, in eastern Africa. A branch of anthropology that investigates humankind’s biological differences has concluded that our ancestors and the first men on earth, the hunter-gatherers, were blood type O. All mankind at that time, and for approximately the next 20,000 years, had the same blood type. Around 20,000BC a combination of increased population and depleted hunting grounds forced the hunter-gatherers to migrate to western Africa and the Asian and European continents. As our hunter ancestors adapted their diet and lifestyle to a different environment, their body also underwent a radical change. A new blood type appeared in response to a new man: the farmer. He cultivated grains, reared animals and lived in communities. Type A evolved from type O.

It was another 5,000–10,000 years before another blood type made its appearance as an evolutionary step from the original blood type O: type B. This appears to have been the result of hunter-gatherers migrating from the heat of eastern Africa to the cold conditions in the Himalayas, where Bs are thought to have evolved. These people were either nomads roaming the country to conquer better lands or farmers working the land they had settled on.

Blood type AB, only about 5 per cent of the world population, is the result of marriages between blood type A populations and blood type B populations. This blood type seems to have appeared not much more than 1,000 years ago.

What does all this tell us? Simply that blood groups are not arbitrary – they appeared as a direct response to man’s physical and nutritional environment and those early blueprints laid down for each blood type continue to have relevance to this day.

Our Blood Type is Part of Our Identity

Genetics have a lot to say as to who we are. The environment in which we live, our lifestyle and our thoughts may be even more important, but our blood type is part of our genetic design and cannot be ignored. The way we plan our life in terms of nutrition, exercise, thought, stress management etc. will make our blood type friend or foe. In other words, if we follow the recommendations that enable our body to positively adjust its biochemistry, we are likely to benefit from vibrant health. On the contrary, if we make choices that disrupt our metabolism, clog up our system with toxins and make our cells stick together, we are heading for trouble.

Our blood type gives information to our body, telling it how to react when confronted by a host of circumstances such as stress; invasion by viral, bacterial, parasitic or fungal infections; or food entering the body. Psychologically and physically each blood group reacts differently to these influences: a specific food can be beneficial or detrimental to our health depending on whether we are an O, an A, a B or an AB; an infective agent will have something to hold onto depending on our blood group; our susceptibility to common diseases or more serious ones is linked to our blood group; the means by which an O will lose weight is not the same as for an A.

And this isn’t anecdotal information. Much of this information can be found in scientific literature. Dr D’Adamo has referenced over 1500 research studies to back up his work.

My Personal Experience with the Blood Type Diet

As a nutritionist I ate, for many years, what I considered to be a very healthy diet – at least I thought it was. I was cutting down on red meats and increasing fish and poultry, replacing wheat with other grains such as rye and spelt (in bread), eating rice, quinoa and millet. I made the effort to cook lentils and pulses. Instead of cow’s cheese I would eat goat’s and sheep’s cheese and yogurt. I was taking plenty of supplements, as well as digestive enzymes. Yet despite all this I still struggled with my weight and had trouble with my immune system during the winter.

Then one day I came across a paragraph on “Blood type and diet” in Dr Ralph Golan’s book, Optimal Wellness. This very briefly described Peter D’Adamo’s work, and to me it sounded so right. Being an O, something deep down in me had always resisted becoming a vegetarian. I just instinctively knew I needed animal protein.

I applied the little I read in Ralph Golan’s description to myself and soon began to feel the benefit. Suitably impressed, I put into practice the advice in Peter D’Adamo’s book. The result? I moved onto a higher level of health. Being blood type O I had permission to eat meat, which I love. Unfortunately I had to give up cheese (which is particularly difficult when you live in France). Os can only have a small amount of goat’s and sheep’s cheese (I was still eating too much). Grains are to be avoided and I can attest to that. Whenever I was tempted to eat normal wheat bread or even too much spelt bread, I immediately felt the difference – a heaviness set in and I put on weight. That was when I first started the diet – I now know what to do to feel good, be healthy and lean. If I am tempted all I need to do is remind myself of how good I feel and, more often than not, following the blood type diet takes precedence over the indulgence. Although it took a little time to adjust to some of the changes, I now positively enjoy the many beneficial foods that are suitable for my blood type.

Since discovering Peter D’Adamo’s book, I have introduced his findings to my patients and continue to do so. To me, the most convincing evidence that there is truth in the blood type diet lies in my own experience and the results my patients are getting with this method of eating.

the key to the blood type diet: lectins

Extensively researched for their good and bad effects, but little spoken of in nutritional circles, lectins encountered in the foods we eat are the so-called “scientific link between blood type and diet”. Before looking into the effects lectins can have in our bodies, let me give a brief description of what knowing about your blood type means – other than making sure you don’t receive the wrong blood during a transfusion.

the reality of lectins

How does our blood type influence our food choices? The main reason is the presence of lectins in the vegetable and animal kingdom. They can also be found in micro-organisms and viruses. Basically lectins are a type of protein. Not all foods contain lectins but those we encounter in our foods are of great importance to our health.

The beneficial and harmful effects of lectins are being extensively studied. It has been found, for example, that the lectins in the following foods have beneficial effects: the lectin in the edible snail has an anti-cancer effect in types A and AB, peanuts may have a preventive effect against breast cancer in blood type A, and lentils and broad (fava) beans may also have anti-cancer effects in type A.

The harmful lectins should, in contrast, be considered our number one enemy. You will soon understand why. Lectins are like mischievous little underworld creatures. They come along in the body, seek out the cells they are akin to, make them clump together so they are stuck and can’t carry out their work properly, then run off to do the same elsewhere. Or in the words of Dr D’Adamo, “Once the intact lectin protein settles someplace in your body, it literally has a magnetic effect on the cells in that region. It clumps the cells together and they are targeted for destruction, as if they too were foreign invaders.”

Any system of the body can be affected, be it the nervous, digestive, cardiovascular or hormonal system. Lectins are proteins that can bind to any molecule with a sugar portion on the surface of its cells. And precisely the way our blood type is expressed is through the presence of specific sugars on the surface of our cells. It so happens that many lectins are blood type specific, meaning that they will be attracted to body cells of one blood type and not necessarily those of another. The word lectin comes from the Latin for “to choose”, describing an essential characteristic of these proteins. They choose, according to blood type, the cells that they are going to work on, making them agglutinate. These cells can be red blood cells, white blood cells, cells of the gastrointestinal tract, the pancreas, the kidneys, the liver … but the first cells met by lectins are, of course, those of the digestive tract. That is where they make their first impact. According to researcher Arpad Pusztai, the lectins in our diet have an enormous influence on the way our digestive tract is going to respond to the foods it comes in contact with and this, in turn, affects our health in general. I have noticed that digestive symptoms improve in the first days of following the blood type diet. My patients feel less bloated, have fewer spasms, less nausea, and they find food doesn’t lie as heavy on the stomach.

Dietary lectins can have an effect on different aspects of digestion. They can inactivate certain digestive enzymes and damage the gut wall, thus impairing absorption. This can also lead to substances that would normally remain in the gut leaking through the gut wall into the general circulation – a condition referred to as leaky gut. When the lining of the small intestine cannot act as an efficient barrier any longer bacteria, food antigens capable of triggering an allergic-type reaction in the body, and toxins, can all cross into the bloodstream. Joint inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis have all been linked with gut permeability. Lectins can also cause painful inflammation of the gut lining.

It has been found that 5–10 per cent of the lectins in food can pass into the bloodstream and circulate in the body. There they can cause inflammatory reactions such as arthritis and allergies; disrupt thyroid hormone (hypo and hyper thyroidism) and insulin production (diabetes); interfere with the normal function of the nervous system; and settle in the kidneys and the liver, disrupting their function.

The process of digestion can affect lectins in various ways. Lectins are usually not inactivated by gastric acids, meaning they will reach the intestine intact. Chewing can actually aggravate some lectin activity. Cooking also has varying effects on lectins. Certain bean lectins are inactivated by specific soaking and cooking procedures (see instructions on page 188), while the negative aspects of other lectins are increased by cooking (bananas are one example). Interestingly, the lectin contained in wheat – a grain that so many people need to avoid – is inactivated by the process of sprouting.

The main reason for avoiding specific foods on the blood type diet is the presence of lectins. A second reason for avoidance is the responsibility a food may have for the higher incidence of certain health problems in each blood type. For example, blood type A has a higher incidence of cardiovascular disease associated with higher levels of cholesterol. As a protective measure olive oil – which has beneficial effects on cholesterol levels – should be consumed rather than butter. A third reason for avoidance is the internal makeup, the blood group individuality so to speak, that determines which food or food group should be avoided. For example, Os have a problem dealing with milk products and should avoid them almost totally.

Using various laboratory and clinical methods Dr D’Adamo and his team have tested the foods covered in this book and their effects on the body. As the research into blood type diets is an ongoing process it is wise to always seek the latest information. Peter D’Adamo’s website www.dadamo.com is a rich source of information for the layperson, the practitioner and the researcher.

I urge you to read all of the following information, rather than just that on your particular blood type, as some of the health advice is relevant to all types.

the four blood types: food requirements and health characteristics

blood type o: general food recommendations

Humanity’s ancestors were all blood type O. The hunter-gatherers ate what they could find growing or roaming in their environment. Their diet was composed of meat, fish, fowl, leaves, roots, berries, fruits, seeds and nuts. These are, in general, the foods you will do best on if you are blood type O. Eat plenty of vegetables with meat, fish and fowl – your best sources of protein. Include nuts and seeds (particularly linseeds and walnuts) several times a week as these provide extra protein, essential fatty acids and some minerals. Fruit – both dried and fresh – is a good way of satisfying your natural need for something sweet.

Meat, Poultry and Game

Do not worry about eating meat – it is good for you because your body is genetically made to metabolise it. Your digestive system normally has the necessary acids in the stomach and enzymes in the intestines to digest animal protein and fat. However, if you are not accustomed to eating animal protein you may need to gradually introduce meat in small quantities and take digestive enzymes for a while.

Eating meat for you is essential as it will balance your blood sugar levels and help to counteract cravings for carbohydrates. Having good steady energy levels and not making fat from sugar depends on your consumption of animal protein. Maintaining and building good healthy muscle mass also depends on eating animal protein, and this will contribute to your being lean. Choose quality organic meat as often as possible. Red meat is your best protein choice. Avoid pork. A recommendation to eat meat does not mean, however, that you can eat huge amounts of it – have no more 3½–6oz/100–180g of meat or poultry six to eight times a week.


Tamara

Blood Type O
Age 27

I became ill towards the end of 2000. The symptoms were very diffuse (muscle ache, skin rashes), but pointed towards some kind of auto-immune disease. My disease was never properly diagnosed and in the end the doctors bade me farewell without giving me any treatment. At this point I decided to turn to alternative medicine. I should add that for one year prior to my becoming ill, I had been following a vegan diet.

I consulted with Karen, and on her advice I have been eating according to my blood type (O) and taking a variety of supplements for about six months. The effect on my condition has been dramatic. I feel fitter and my energy level has risen. I have experienced an improvement in my sleep patterns and in my daily exercise routine (jogging). The most salient effect has been as a result of giving up wheat flour – I feel a great deal lighter and seem to be digesting other flours (eg. rye and spelt) a lot better. To cut a long story short, I feel light as a feather and healthy.


Seafood

You are the only blood type who can eat virtually all shellfish: oysters, crab, lobster, shrimp, clams etc. Enjoy these whenever you can. Your choice of fish is also large. Fatty fish are especially good for you, as they contain beneficial omega-3 oils that counter inflammation.

Vegetables

All blood types benefit from eating plenty of vegetables. They are the basis of a healthy diet. Ensure they are as fresh as possible and eat them every day for lunch and dinner – raw or cooked, juiced, in salads, in soup – and as a snack. You will find information about the tremendous benefits of eating these health-giving plants in the recipe section. Green leafy vegetables such as kale, spring greens (collards), turnip greens and dandelion leaves should be included often as they provide much-needed calcium. Os should avoid potatoes, but you can replace them with sweet potatoes. If you feel leafy vegetables are not filling enough, add a second vegetable such as celeriac, parsnips, kohlrabi, pumpkin, beetroot (beet), carrots, fresh green peas, instead of adding the traditional potato or rice accompaniment. We tend to forget that grains are not the only food that contain carbohydrates; so too do vegetables. And the carbohydrates provided by vegetables are better for you than those derived from grains.

Fruits

Vegetables and fruits are similar in their nutrient content. They are our best source of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants. Fruits generally have a higher sugar content than vegetables. However, this comes in the form of fructose, which raises blood sugar levels much less rapidly than sucrose – the sugar found in table sugar and refined carbohydrates such as white flour. This is an important difference. Fruit can help maintain balanced energy levels, while refined sugars can make them fluctuate wildly.

If you wish to lose weight eat a piece of fruit 30 minutes before your meals. This practice has been shown to moderate appetite and encourage weight loss.

Not all fruits are suitable for Os. You should, for instance, avoid kiwi, oranges, certain melons and coconuts.


Bruno

Blood Type O
Age 37

I am a former high-level racing cyclist. After reaching 30 I began experiencing health problems: my weight began to increase, my digestion became a concern, and I experienced backache. I tried various diets and health recommendations and although I lost weight, I would simply regain it.

Around this time I met Karen, who recommended the blood type diet. Dr D’Adamo’s book was not yet available in France, but just a few months later I discovered it by chance (although I do not believe in pure chance!) and that triggered my seriously following the diet.

I lost 28kg (61lb) in nine months, but to me the most important benefit has been an increased energy level. I am now in wonderful shape and have started racing again. I am scoring excellent results and recently won a race against a team of younger cyclists. If I go off my diet my body is quick to remind me of my misdemeanour. If, for example, I have a cup of coffee before a race I get cramps in my legs.


Nuts, Seeds and their Oils

Nuts and seeds should be a regular part of your diet. They are a source of essential fatty acids, protein and minerals. I consider the most valuable ones to be walnuts and flaxseeds (linseeds). Walnuts contain linolenic acid, a valuable omega-3 fatty acid rare in our modern diets. Eat freshly-cracked walnuts and use walnut oil in salads, but do not cook with it. If you heat it, the valuable fatty acid will be damaged. Flaxseeds are a very valuable seed, much used by practitioners of natural medicine. They contain lignans that are transformed in the gut into substances that have anti-cancer effects and that can regulate hormone levels during the menopause or in cases of premenstrual syndrome. Its essential oil, linolenic acid, has anti-inflammatory effects (type Os have a tendency toward inflammatory conditions) that relieve symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, eczema, psoriasis, etc. Flaxseeds have also been shown to reduce cholesterol levels and coronary heart disease. They also contain a mucilage that is very effective against constipation.

I recommend that my patients make regular use of walnuts and flaxseeds and their oils. A convenient way of eating flaxseeds is to grind them in an electric coffee grinder (cleaned first, of course!) and sprinkle 1–3 tablespoons on salads or stir through yogurt or apple sauce. Always choose cold pressed oils, as these retain their fatty acids intact. The only cold pressed oil that withstands the heat of cooking is olive oil. Use the other recommended oils for your blood type in salads.


Monika

Blood Type O
Age 53

Before trying the blood type diet I had been suffering from constipation, a white tongue and pain in my arms and legs for 10 years. I had been taking herbal infusions and plant supplements with no significant improvement. On consulting a naturopath I was also advised to include cheese and grains in my daily meals. I followed this regime for several years but my problems persisted.

When I met Karen her first question was: “What is your blood type?” Like many others I was surprised to hear that my blood type could have a bearing on my diet. After giving her my meal plans she said “wheat and milk products are not for you”. These were precisely the foods I included regularly in my meals. I also needed to eat red meat – something that I was previously advised to avoid. I followed the blood type diet and took appropriate supplements. The result? Just two months later I felt a substantial improvement. In addition, my cholesterol level – which was slightly elevated with my previous diet – is now well within the normal range.


Grains

Grains should not be a regular part of your diet, although you do have a certain degree of tolerance for some types of grains. You can eat small amounts of rice, rye, millet, spelt, oats, kamut and buckwheat. Wheat, corn and barley (and for some, oats) can encourage weight gain. They are also very often held responsible for various inflammatory conditions such as arthritis and fibromyalgia. However, you can eat sprouted grains as in Essene bread (also called sprouted wheat bread). Although it is made with wheat, the sprouting process destroys the lectins that normally should be avoided. Essene bread is beneficial for all blood types.


what is Essene bread?

The name Essene comes from a Jewish sect that lived in the time of Jesus Christ, and in the same region. The Essenians led a very austere life and believed in the importance of “live” food. They made a special kind of bread from sprouted grains that they baked, or rather dried, in the sun. Today Essene bread is baked in a slow oven. In France, Essene bread is made with sprouted wheat, rye, spelt or kamut. The consistency, appearance and taste bear little resemblance to normal bread. It is moist and slightly sweet. Handle with care because it tends to break. If you wish, you may lightly toast it; in this case it is best cut into thick slices. Among my patients some love this bread and others would much rather do without it. It is highly digestible and works wonders if you are constipated.


Milk Products

Cheese and yogurt made from cow’s milk, and cow’s milk itself, should be avoided. Nevertheless you may eat goat’s and sheep’s cheese (2oz/60g) and yogurt once or twice a week. If you need to lose weight or suffer from any type of inflammatory disease such as asthma, eczema or arthritis, or if you have a tendency to produce mucous in the respiratory tract, avoid dairy products altogether until your condition has improved. You may then find your body is able to tolerate small amounts again.

If you are concerned about not getting enough calcium remember that cows do not drink milk and yet produce milk that is very rich in calcium. Where does it come from? From their vegetarian diet. Here are some foods that are good for your blood type and that contain more calcium, weight for weight, than whole milk: green leafy vegetables (collard leaves, kale, turnip leaves, dandelion greens), figs, almonds, sunflower seeds, kelp, dulse, tofu and watercress. Broccoli, sesame seeds and walnuts also contain good amounts. If you feel you are not getting sufficient calcium because you are not making these food choices often enough, it would be wise to take a calcium supplement. If you are pregnant or breast feeding definitely take a supplement.

Legumes and lentils

The general tendency for several years now has been to recommend that people reduce their consumption of red meat and obtain more protein from vegetable sources. To provide complete protein, eating a combination of legumes and seeds, legumes and grains, or legumes and milk products was recommended. This, again, may seem good if you only consider nutrition from the point of view of the foods. If your blood type is O, this is definitely not a good way to get your protein. Your body needs meat – good lean organic meat, just like the kind your blood type ancestors ate. You can eat two or three portions of legumes a week but do not use them as a replacement for meat in your diet. You can also eat soya products such as tofu, but again do not rely on soya as a main source of protein.


Anne

Blood Type O
Age 36

When I was diagnosed as having multiple sclerosis, I consulted a nutritionist on the advice of my osteopath. The food recommendations I was given were based on the blood type diet. By following this approach I didn’t expect to heal myself but simply to reduce the negative effects that certain foods can have on the body.

I had been eating huge amounts of milk products, plenty of grains and very little vegetables and protein. I paid great attention to the quantities I was eating but was still having trouble controlling my weight. Almost every day I suffered from gas, bloating and constipation. I also regularly experienced an irrepressible need for sugar. Following the blood type diet has significantly changed my relationship with food. I have discovered the pleasure of choosing my food and cooking it. I feel much less tired in spite of my illness and medical treatment, and many of my symptoms have disappeared. The grey circles under my eyes have almost completely gone, and the texture of my skin has changed for the better.

I thought it would be difficult and constraining to follow this dietary discipline but little by little the desire to eat cakes and biscuits, sweets and rich meals has disappeared and I have rediscovered a healthy taste for food.


type o: health issues

The blood type diet is not the answer to all ills and following it will not give you complete protection from disease. But it is a powerful means of setting the stage to allow your body to perform to the best of its ability. The basic ideas that underpin the blood type diet tie in very well with research being done into how nutrition influences the way our genes express themselves.

Our genes hold information as to whether an illness could assail our body or not. This information does not necessarily mean the illness will develop. It will if the correct conditions are present. It will not if conditions that prevent our genes from expressing that illness are present. Dr Jeffrey S. Bland has written a book about this concept, Genetic Nutritioneering. In a tribute to Dr D’Adamo he says, “It is truly fascinating that medicine is moving from a period of the past one hundred years when disease was considered to be ‘hard wired’ into our genes, to a time when we realize that we can play a role in strengthening our genetic inheritance through our daily living”. The blood type diet does exactly this. “Eat right for your type” and you will strongly reduce your risk of having to deal with the potential health conditions hidden in your genes.

Digestion

As you will have read in the previous section, lectins present in the foods you should avoid make their first impact in your digestive system. Digestive complaints such as those associated with irritable bowel syndrome – bloating, gas, pain, spasm, constipation and diarrhoea – are greatly reduced by following the blood type diet, and often disappear. If these complaints persist they are often due to an imbalanced bowel flora. In this case, consider taking a good probiotic supplement. These symptoms can also be caused by the presence of undesirable parasites, bacteria or yeast (candida for example). It may be necessary to check this with your doctor or a reputable diagnostic laboratory if the diet doesn’t lessen or remove your symptoms.

As previously stated, type Os normally produce enough stomach acid to digest meat. However, if certain conditions occur simultaneously, such as too much stress and eating the wrong foods for your type, your stomach can produce too much acid. You may then suffer from heartburn or stomach ulcers. Following your diet recommendations should clear the condition. If this is not sufficient you may need to try a stress management program and some soothing herbs such as slippery elm, marshmallow or DGL (deglycyrrhizinated licorice root).

Weight

Many of my overweight type O patients have experienced good weight loss results by following the diet and a dynamic exercise program. You needn’t try any of those powders, shakes or pills to lose weight – just eat lean animal protein and plenty of vegetables. Wheat and milk products are largely responsible for weight gain in this blood type. I am living proof of this fact, my blood type being O.

Another weight loss-promoting habit is to eat a substantial breakfast, a mid-morning snack, a real meal at lunch, a mid-afternoon snack and an early and light dinner. A study has shown that people who ate their last daily meal late in the afternoon, rather than in the evening, lost weight. This was the only change they made in their eating habits.

Each time you eat make sure you include some form of protein. For breakfast you could have an egg or some fish, as well as some fruit (avoid cereal in any form). For lunch and dinner eat vegetables (cooked and/or raw) with fish, meat or poultry. Snacks should also have some form of protein – try nuts or yogurt (soya or sheep) with fruit. Avoid eating grains and cheese if you wish to lose weight.

Exercise is very important for this blood type. Vigorous exercise is what you need to get your body burning fat. Type Os have a tendency towards a sluggish metabolism if they do not force themselves through three to four 30-minute sessions of strenuous exercise each week. You will find it gives you a positive outlook on life and enables you to respond better to stress.


Agathe

Blood Type O
Age 9

I wanted to see a nutritionist because I wanted to lose weight. But mostly I wanted to feel better. In my class nearly everyone weighed 39kg (85lb) and I weighed 10kg (22lb) more. When I saw them I said to myself: “If I could only be like them.”

I visited a nutritionist with my mother and was given a food list that suited my blood type. When I saw the list I thought I could never do it, but I did it and I felt much better. I had a bowel movement every day, I drank water and I paid attention to what I ate. I felt my tummy was getting smaller and I was less tired. It really helped and I am happy.


Thyroid

If you are exercising and following the diet and you still have difficulty losing weight, it is worthwhile checking your thyroid – a weak point for your O system. Hypothyroidism can also be responsible for chronic fatigue, weight gain and difficulty losing weight, depression, low libido, period problems in women, a weak immune system and many more symptoms. Here is an easy test you can do yourself. As soon as you wake up in the morning and before moving about, take your basal metabolic temperature. Place a traditional thermometer (not electronic) in your armpit for 10 minutes, and remain quiet during this time. Follow this procedure at the same time on three consecutive days (menstruating women should do this on days 2, 3 and 4 of their cycle). A temperature below 36.6°C (97.8°F) on three consecutive days most probably indicates low thyroid function.

Blood tests alone do not always give enough information as to what your thyroid status is. If the blood test indicates low thyroid function, fine. If it is normal according to the lab, then it is necessary to consider your symptoms and your temperature before dismissing low thyroid function. A practitioner who knows about thyroid function would be able to help you determine whether your symptoms point towards low thyroid function. I also recommend Martin Budd’s book Why am I so Tired? He has studied and treated hypothyroid problems for over 20 years.

Inflammation

I find that type O patients with joint or muscle pain or any other type of inflammatory condition usually find relief within a few weeks of following the diet. Inflammation is another weak spot in blood type O. This can be largely avoided if you eat the right foods. The culprits are dairy products and grains. I have tested this myself. Many years ago I strained my knee while on a skiing holiday. The resulting pain lasted for several months then disappeared, only to reappear intermittently for no apparent reason. However, since I stopped eating wheat my knee has been fine. If I do make an exception and eat too much dairy produce or grain, then I invariably feel a twinge in my knee again.


Nathalie

Blood Type O
Age 27

For several months I had been feeling very tired; I also had a persistent tingling feeling in my arms and legs, and my muscles were very weak. A medical examination revealed inflammation in the cervical area of the spinal cord, and I was treated with intravenous cortisol. That took care of the muscular problems. However, I was still very tired, still felt a tingling in my hands and I had a very bad complexion.

My osteopath recommended that I see a nutritionist. I followed the blood type diet to the letter and within two to three days I felt an improvement. My fatigue, irritability, muscular problems and constipation have now gone. In addition, I have lost the weight I had gained from months of inactivity.


blood type a: general food recommendations

The hunter-gatherers were forced to migrate when the wild game that was their main food source became scarce. Unfortunately their proficiency at hunting was such that they soon found themselves in the same position in their new lands and they were forced to adapt to new living conditions. A new lifestyle and environment brought with it a new internal environment. Blood type A was born. The new type A man cultivated land and raised animals, and was far more suited to eating the products of his labour – namely grains.

What you can eat and thrive on today has a lot to do with past conditioning. Of the four blood types, type A is the closest to a vegetarian. Vegetarianism is not recommended for the other three blood groups, due to their inner makeup.

Your body likes fish; pulses (legumes) and lentils; tofu; fermented soya products such as tempeh, miso and natto; nuts and seeds; grains; fruit and of course plenty of vegetables. You should avoid cow’s milk products, although it is okay to eat some goat and sheep products. Here is the general outline of what your diet should look like.

Seafood

In the animal realm your best choice of foods comes from the sea. As you will read in the section on health issues for type As, you have a higher risk (along with type AB) of cardiovascular disease than Os and Bs. Fish offers protection from this. You can choose from a large selection of suitable fish but should avoid all shellfish. Make sure you regularly eat fatty fish such as mackerel, sardines, trout, salmon, herring etc. When you eat fish limit the quantity because your digestive makeup doesn’t enable you to digest large amounts. However, you should be able to judge this for yourself once you learn to listen to your body’s needs.

Meat and Poultry

Your best choices of protein are determined by the fact that your stomach acid levels tend to be low. In order to properly digest animal protein we need ample amounts of hydrochloric acid. You are therefore better off eating only small amounts of chicken, turkey, guinea fowl and deriving most of your protein from soya products and fish. You may also include eggs in your diet. I have noticed that many of my blood type A patients adopted these choices before knowing about the blood type diet. These are usually patients who are already on the way to better health and have discovered by themselves what foods their body prefers. Eating meat will only clog up your system, make you feel sluggish and heavy, and add weight. Lucy (co-writer of this book) is an A, and knows all about this feeling.

Legumes, Lentils and Soya Products

Pulses and lentils are another excellent source of protein for this blood group. They provide a good source of complex carbohydrates and fibre. All of the health benefits attributed to legumes apply to you more than to any other blood type. Legumes contain phytosterols and fibre that have cholesterol-lowering and cancer-protective effects (type As have a higher risk of cancer than some other blood types – this is discussed in greater detail on page 23). In addition, legumes encourage good bowel function, which protects against colon cancer and haemorrhoids. Fibre regulates both blood sugar levels and insulin sensitivity, thereby offering protection against diabetes.

Soya beans and other legumes have approximately the same qualities. However, soya beans, and hence soya products, have a higher fat content with plenty of essential fatty acids and also a higher protein content with an excellent amino acid profile. Soya is a good source of lecithin, which has been shown to lower cholesterol levels (As are at higher risk of elevated cholesterol) and help the liver and gall bladder function effectively.

Soya also contains phytoestrogens that exert both a mild estrogenic and anti-estrogenic effect. In other words these compounds have a balancing effect on the hormonal system.


Robert

Blood Type A
Age 56

It is often under the recommendation of his wife that a man goes to see a nutritionist. Over the years I have increasingly suffered from digestive difficulties and painful joints. My professional life is intense and stressful but also enjoyable.

As a type A my food plan excluded meat and dairy. This was not easy but I was able to compensate with fish, which I like. After one month, with the help of some supplements, I regained digestive well-being and experienced a notable reduction in the pain in my joints.

As for the stress issue, I decided to do an adrenal stress test which revealed that my stress hormones, cortisol and DHEA, were high. I was told that since my DHEA was high, this would protect me for a time against the effects of high cortisol. However, I should avoid remaining in this state for too long as this could lead to tired adrenal glands in the end. To reduce my physiological stress response I take herbs and specific nutrients recommended by the nutritionist.


Grains

In general type As can eat grains. However, you should limit your consumption of wheat and avoid wheat bran and wheat germ. Avoid wheat altogether if you have inflammatory problems such as arthritis and easy build-up of mucus in the respiratory tract. Wheat and corn can make some type As gain weight; in this case it is better to avoid these two grains.

Of all the blood groups you can enjoy grains most, but eat them in moderation. In our society we tend to eat too many grains and cereals – too much bread, pasta, cakes and cookies. They are a convenient and quick way of getting food in our systems: bread is quickly cut, pizza is easily stuck in the oven and pasta is cooked in no time. Many people eat these foods several times a week – if not every day – when they should be eating vegetables and healthy protein. So beware! Change your habits now for the sake of your health.

All this being said, grains do have health benefits. They complement legumes and the two provide all the amino acids needed to make up a complete protein. Legumes are low in the amino acids, methionine and cysteine; grains are low in lysine. Grains are a good source of fibre (although we tend to forget that vegetables are too), minerals and B vitamins.

You may eat sprouted grains, as sprouting destroys the lectins that normally should be avoided. Sprouted grain Essene bread is a particularly good source and is beneficial for all blood groups (for more information on Essene bread see page 10).

Nuts and Seeds

These are another protein source that have the added benefit of fibre and minerals. Walnuts have a detoxifying effect in the intestines and are a good source of linolenic acid (omega-3 oil), a fatty acid lacking in our diet. Flaxseeds (linseeds) contain the highest amount of linolenic acid of all the seeds and are rich in lignans that, once converted in the intestines, have anti-cancer properties. The omega-3 oils are effective in lowering cholesterol levels and treating inflammatory conditions such as arthritis and eczema. Flaxseeds have been shown to improve women’s hormonal cycles, increasing the progesterone/estrogen ratio and encouraging ovulation and healthy ovaries. Try grinding flaxseeds in an electric coffee grinder (cleaned of all traces of coffee). They can then be sprinkled on your food or you can also add them to a glass of water or juice. Keep them in the refrigerator for no longer than five days. Flaxseeds, ground or unground, are an excellent remedy for constipation. Peanuts, which are actually a legume, contain a lectin that may have anti-cancer properties. Include peanuts in your food choices. They are a good source of protein.


Madeleine

Blood Type A
Age 88

At 85 I decided it was still not too late to seriously follow Dr D’Adamo’s method of eating according to one’s blood type. During most of my life I’ve suffered from allergy problems: runny nose, itchy eyes and, most often, a lack of energy. I had wondered at one time if wheat may have been the source of the problem, but convinced myself that it was unlikely.

I read and reread Dr D’Adamo’s book Eat Right 4 Your Type. At first I was convinced that my blood group was type O since I felt I shared many of the characteristics that went with that blood type. I started cutting out wheat and most cereals and I felt better. Eventually I had a blood test which revealed to my surprise that I was type A. The difference in food choices between group O and group A made all the difference to my total feeling of well-being. I started cutting down on meat and adding more soya products to my meals. Along with my multi-vitamin, my health practitioner advised me to take an extra vitamin C and a vitamin B complex, and added vitamin B12 plus some Gingko Biloba. From then on my stress response calmed down and I started sleeping soundly – this was new to me as I had not been sleeping well for years. I exercise daily outside (weather permitting), practise Qi Gong breathing and relaxation movements, garden, cord my wood, knit, read and get the best out of cable television. My life is very full.

Today, at 88, I feel so well, with a high energy level and a joy and enthusiasm for life. Giving up some favourite foods – even some fruit and vegetables – has been very worthwhile. It is always so good to hear friends greet me with “You look so well!”


Milk Products

As with blood type O, milk products should only play a small part in your diet. You can, however, have a bit more than type Os. As is the case with all types, signs of excess mucus in the respiratory system should alert you to reducing your consumption. Cow’s milk products are largely to be avoided. Goat’s and sheep’s milk products are better for you. However, nothing in this range of foods can be said to be beneficial. When you read about blood types B and AB you will see that they are the only groups that derive any benefit from milk products.

Vegetables

All blood types benefit from eating plenty of vegetables. They are the basis of a healthy diet. Ensure they are as fresh as possible and eat them every day for lunch and dinner – raw or cooked, juiced, in salads, in soup – and as a snack. You will find information about the tremendous benefits of eating these health-giving plants in the recipe section. As you cannot count on milk products for your calcium, make calcium-rich, green leafy vegetables such as kale, spring greens (collards), turnip greens and dandelion leaves a regular part of your diet.

Avoid tomatoes as they contain a lectin that is detrimental to the type A system. When you make salad dressings, replace the commonly used vinegar with lemon juice. Your sensitive stomach lining will be grateful. Avoid all types of pepper. The best oils for salads are flaxseed, olive and walnut oils. Avoid cotton seed, peanut and corn oil. Give flavour to your dressings with fresh herbs, tamari (Japanese soy sauce) and plenty of garlic. If you have a problem digesting garlic this may mean your liver has difficulty doing its job as a detoxifier. In this case garlic isn’t the problem, your liver is. See a nutritionist or naturopathic doctor to help sort this out.

Fruits

Vegetables and fruits are similar in their nutrient content. They are our best source of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants. Fruits generally have a higher sugar content than vegetables. However, this comes in the form of fructose, which raises blood sugar levels much less rapidly than sucrose – the sugar found in table sugar and refined carbohydrates such as white flour. This is an important difference. Fruit can help maintain balanced energy levels, while refined sugars can make them fluctuate wildly.

If you wish to lose weight eat a piece of fruit 30 minutes before your meals. This practice has been shown to moderate appetite and encourage weight loss.

Not all fruits are good for you. Oranges are too acidic for your sensitive stomach – many of my type A patients have noticed this on their own. You should also avoid tropical fruits such as bananas, guavas, mangoes, coconuts and papayas.


Marie

Blood Type A
Age 58

The blood type diet appealed to me on an intellectual level. I realised that since childhood I had a very strong attraction and appetite for foods that I should be eating. I was happy to see this is actually being confirmed by a scientific approach to foods. I always had a repulsion for red meat.

If I go off the diet I immediately feel digestive and physical heaviness, abdominal and general bloatedness and it takes my body several days to eliminate the offending food. In the past I would go to seminars on personal development where the food that was served was vegetarian with plenty of wheat in its various forms. Invariably I would return home having put on 3kg. Now I know why.


What Can I Drink?

Water, water, water. Your Body’s Many Cries for Water is a fascinating book written by Dr F. Batmanghelidj about the many signals of thirst that are mistaken for a need for food or medication. With age the body loses the ability to signal to us its need for water, yet many conditions can be relieved just by drinking this life-giving liquid: back pain, headache, joint pain, heartburn, stomach pain, high blood pressure, cholesterol, excess weight and allergies. Water is essential for the most basic chemical reactions in the body to take place: it activates the enzymes, carries nutrients to the cells and waste matter out of the cells. Our bodies are 60 per cent water so it’s hardly surprising that it is so vital.

Dr Batmanghelidj recommends drinking at least 2 litres a day in addition to any other beverages. If you do not feel thirsty it does not mean you do not need water – it means your thirst mechanisms are out of order.

You will also do your body a lot of good by including our Green Tea with Ginger drink in your diet. In one sip you have the beneficial antioxidants of green tea and the digestive properties of the ginger. Read more about the properties of these two plants on pages 161–162.

A glass of red wine a day may help keep your cardiovascular system in good working order. Not just any bottle of red wine, though. French research shows that the older and renowned wines made in the traditional way have more antioxidant activity.

type a: health issues

Digestion

Having good digestion is the first step to good health. For type As to function at their best, they need to take into account their particular digestive characteristics. Type As tend to have low stomach acid (hydrochloric acid) and therefore low digestive enzymes. Eating a meal sets in motion the production of stomach acid that in turn indicates to the digestive system that it should produce digestive enzymes. So if your stomach acid is low your digestive enzymes will also be low. By following the guidance given in the paragraph on protein consumption you will avoid overtaxing your system.

Incomplete digestion leads to toxicity which in turn produces signs of dysfunction that can affect all the systems of the body. Here are just a few symptoms of a toxic body: headaches, eye problems, ear problems, respiratory problems such as excessive mucus formation, frequent need to clear the throat, blood sugar irregularities, muscle/joint aches and pains, skin problems, anxiety and irritability.

Following your blood type diet and avoiding the foods containing the lectins detrimental to your health will maximize digestion and help avoid bloating, flatulence and gripping pains in the stomach.

Weight

If you have a weight problem you need to tackle it differently from type O. You should stick to your diet and avoid meat, making sure you get sufficient protein at each meal in the form of fish, poultry, tofu, eggs and beans. Make the right grain choices, avoid wheat and eat very small amounts of dairy produce – one or two yogurts or pieces of cheese per week (sheep’s or goat’s, not cow’s). Eat plenty of vegetables as always. Remember that weight loss has more to do with food choices than calories.

I have found that stress is an important element in weight problems. Consider doing a test that measures the stress hormones produced by the adrenal glands: cortisol and DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone). I have conducted hundreds of adrenal stress tests with my patients and type As definitely have the highest cortisol levels. If this condition is long-standing the patient may already be in a state of adrenal fatigue, which results in low energy levels and difficulty coping with any type of stress.

High cortisol levels can decrease muscle mass and increase blood sugar levels, both of which lead to weight gain – particularly around the waist. If, as an A, you have difficulty losing weight you might want to look into your stress hormone levels. It doesn’t take much for them to skyrocket in your system. Seek out a nutritionist who is familiar with this issue and who can help you with natural substances such as siberian ginseng, vitamin B5, phosphatidylserine, vitamin C and others. They do work very well in restoring adrenal health and assisting fat loss and muscle gain.


Constance

Blood Type A
Age 26

I have always struggled with my weight. Since adolescence I have tried various diets that have worked to some degree but I have never found anything that seemed right for me. I can compare this to a key trying to find the right lock. Sometimes the lock seems to be the right one but it is never the perfect fit. With this way of eating I have finally found the right key. I have learned to listen to what my body has to tell me. With this way of eating (I use this phrase because the word diet has rather restrictive connotations) I have experienced a heightened sense of well-being. I had acne and lots of bloating after meals or in hot weather. After certain meals I would become apathetic and want to sleep. I also had tendonitis in my knees that didn’t respond to medical or alternative treatment. After several months of this new way of eating all my problems gradually disappeared.


Heart Disease

Take care of your heart and arteries. In mainstream medicine elevated cholesterol is considered a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. If one looks more closely one realizes that heart disease is not necessarily linked with elevated cholesterol. Studies have shown that not everyone with cardiovascular disease has a high cholesterol level. According to research into blood types and heart disease, blood types A and AB tend to have higher cholesterol levels than Os and Bs. Elevated cholesterol levels therefore seem to be more of a risk factor for heart disease in As and ABs than Os and Bs. Here is another one of those blood type links that could explain the partial success which the official “good for your heart” diet recommendations have in reducing cholesterol levels and heart attacks. These recommendations are close to what type As should be eating, so As will have good results with such diets. One of my patients who is an O was put on a diet of beans, grains and little meat. Her blood cholesterol level jumped from 199 to 233 in less than 2 years. After 5 months of following the blood type diet for type O and eating red meat and hardly any grains or cheese her blood cholesterol dropped from from 233 to 171. The reason I mention this type O patient here is because she was eating a type A diet although she is an O. The diet that enabled her cholesterol levels to drop was the diet appropriate for her blood type and not the generally accepted cholesterol-lowering diet.

Following your blood type A diet will help you reduce your cholesterol levels if they are high. Legumes and lentils, vegetables (artichokes, carrots, beetroot, garlic, onions, leeks), fruits (apples, avocados, grapefruit, pineapple), fatty fish with their beneficial oils (mackerel, sardines, salmon, tuna, herring), soya bean products, brown rice and oats, olive oil, walnuts and almonds – scientific studies have shown that all these foods lower cholesterol levels. Even if your levels are normal, you will benefit from this diet as it will prevent cholesterol levels from rising. You may eat eggs; although they do contain cholesterol they have never been shown to substantially raise cholesterol levels. High levels of cholesterol mainly come from the fact that our body manufactures it from sugar and synthesises it from fats. Some of us are better at this than others, As and ABs for instance.

Another factor in cardiovascular disease is the thickness of your blood. Around 80 per cent of strokes and heart attacks are due to a blood clot. Blood type A has more active blood clotting factors than type O, so As should eat foods that have been shown to help control blood clotting. Garlic is a very important one. Crush raw garlic in your salad dressings and use lemon juice instead of vinegar; the crushing and the acid from the lemon juice help release a substance called ajoene, a very potent anticoagulant. Onions are another amazing food that can neutralize blood clots, while fatty fish contain compounds that have anticlotting properties. And the good news for all wine lovers is that drinking one glass of good quality red wine with your main meal will help prevent blood clotting. Resveratrol – a substance produced by the fermentation of grape skins – has been shown to prevent blood platelets from clumping together. You can also drink red grape juice, but you will need three times as much to get the same benefit as one glass of wine. Another important drink is green tea, which contains a clot-dissolving compound called catechin. Finally, include olive oil and fresh pineapple in your diet as they have been shown to protect the arteries.

If you include all of these foods in your everyday diet you will be giving your body the best chance of long-term good health.

Cancer

There is a clear association between blood types A and AB and cancer. Certain inherent factors in blood type A make this blood type friendly territory for the development of cancer. When cancer cells develop in As they tend to be accepted by the immune system as friends instead of being fought and killed. Of course there are many other factors that come into play but following the blood type diet can play a powerful part in avoiding cancer.

Apart from the foods that have been shown to be protective against cancer in general and even help prevent the spread of cancer, Dr D’Adamo’s research has discovered some foods that are specifically beneficial for blood type A (and AB) in the fight against cancer. Snails – the kind you eat in France in a parsley and garlic sauce – contain a lectin that has anti-cancer properties specially suited to type A (and AB). This lectin has anti-cancer activity towards breast cancer cells. Shelled, unskinned peanuts offer the same benefits. Lentils, the common domestic mushroom and the grain amaranth are also recommended for their anti-cancer effects.

Soya has been shown in many studies to protect against cancer, and is specially well suited for type As (and ABs). Among other foods that are highly recommended are fruits and vegetables. They contain nutrients, phytonutrients and fibre that have been shown to have these protective effects. Eating large amounts of fruits and vegetables can cut your cancer risk in half. The general recommendation is to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables every day. In this case more is better.

Garlic and onions have been shown in studies to contain substances that prevented laboratory animals from getting cancer – even though they were exposed to potent carcinogens. Green vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli are packed with anti-cancer substances that are not destroyed during cooking. Grapefruits and lemons – the whole fruit, including the pith – also have a collection of anti-cancer compounds. One of the best ways of benefiting from all the goodness of these citrus fruits is to add them to your freshly-juiced vegetables. Leave the thin yellow skin on the lemons but remove the coloured skin from the grapefruit. Pineapple is well known as a digestive aid but less well known for its anti-cancer properties. The enzyme bromelain in pineapple appears to activate the immune system to help the body combat cancer cells. Research by Dr Taussig in Hawaii has shown that pineapple inhibits the formation of tumours. Legumes, a beneficial food for type A, also have anti-cancer qualities.

blood type b: general food recommendations

This blood type, the third to have appeared on earth, is thought to have developed from the earlier blood type O after migrations to the Himalayan regions and later to northern China. The eating habits of these early migrants included meat and fermented milk products. Today, blood type B is the lucky one when it comes to milk products. However, giving you the green light to eat milk products does not mean you can go overboard with full fat cheeses – practise moderation.

In many Asian and African cultures dairy foods have not been part of the diet for generations. If you are a type B who belongs to one of these groups, you may need to introduce dairy products gradually and include a digestive enzyme containing lactase in your diet.

Your body likes meat, fish, dairy products, legumes, nuts and seeds, grains, vegetables and fruits – as long as you choose the right foods in each group. In other words your blood type enables you to eat foods from every category, quite unlike Os and As who are restricted in certain categories. However, there are some meats, fish, legumes and grains that you should avoid.

Meat, Poultry and Game

Meat is a good food for you and you digest it well. Your best choices are lamb, mutton, rabbit and venison. In our recipes you will find out how to prepare venison – it is the most natural of all meats because these animals live in the wild. You need to avoid chicken as it contains a damaging lectin for your system. You may eat turkey and pheasant (during the hunting season) as well as beef and veal. Your body also has the necessary enzymes to deal with the fats in these foods so do not worry about eating some saturated fat.

Seafood

Fish is another good source of protein for type B, although some are to be avoided – such as anchovy, sea bass and smoked salmon. Make it a point to eat fatty fish (mackerel, sardines, fresh salmon, tuna, herring) that contain beneficial omega-3 oils. Shellfish is definitely not for you because of the presence of lectins that act against your B makeup.

Milk Products

When it comes to milk, cheese and yogurt you are the lucky one. You may use dairy products as a source of protein, but if you are prone to respiratory infections or problems with excess mucus formation avoid these foods for some time as they encourage these problems. If your body is not accustomed to dairy products, start slowly. You may need to add the digestive enzyme lactase in capsule form and start with predigested forms of milk products, such as yogurt and kefir.

As you will see in the section on health issues for your type, your immune system needs special care. Research has shown that yogurt can stimulate different aspects of immunity, enabling your system to fight against bacteria and viruses.


Marie

Blood Type B
Age 43

For many years I had been carrying around chronic fatigue like a millstone around my neck, despite eating organic food and taking supplements. For two years premenstrual problems have been plaguing me for 4–5 days each month. Since starting the blood type diet some months ago and changing my supplements, I no longer suffer from premenstrual syndrome and my need for daily afternoon naps has almost disappeared.


Legumes

With a few notable exceptions, these are another good source of protein for type Bs. You may eat a portion of legumes nearly every day. They are a source of fibre that encourages good bowel function and helps regulate blood sugar levels. Avoid lentils. In addition, soya beans and soya bean products are not really for you. For various reasons they react negatively with your system. I have noticed many of my B patients naturally avoid them.

Grains

Grains are a concentrated source of carbohydrate, and type Bs need to watch their consumption of grains and carbohydrates in general. Wheat, corn, buckwheat and rye should be avoided by this blood type. They contain lectins that block insulin activity, thereby disrupting the way sugar is metabolized in the body. Instead of sugar being used for energy it can be stored as fat and cause weight gain. Also, this excess of sugar in the blood can form elevated levels of a type of blood lipids called triglycerides that are also a risk factor for heart disease.

This doesn’t bar you from eating all grains. Try spelt instead of wheat. This ancient grain can replace wheat in nearly every circumstance: pies, cakes, breads, pasta etc. Rice and oats are also very good for you. You may eat sprouted grains. The best source is Essene bread (also called sprouted wheat bread). Although it is made with wheat, sprouting destroys the lectins that normally should be avoided. For more information on Essene bread see page 10.

Nuts, Seeds and their Oils

In our diet we lack one family of oils called omega-3 fatty acids. These are found in walnuts and flaxseeds (linseeds). It is important to regularly incorporate these seeds in your diet. Walnut and flaxseed oils are very prone to rancidity because the omega-3 fatty acids they contain are very fragile and can easily suffer from oxidation. Buy from a reputable manufacturer, keep these oils in the refrigerator and use within six weeks of opening.

There are quite a lot of commonly eaten nuts and seeds that type Bs need to avoid, mainly because of the agglutinating lectins they contain. Avoid peanuts, cashews, pine nuts, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, hazelnuts, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds. Avoid all oils made with these nuts and seeds including canola, soy and corn. You can enjoy walnuts, linseeds, almonds, brazil nuts, pecans and macadamia nuts. The best cooking oil is olive oil and for salads choose flaxseed, walnut and olive oil.


Fats and Oils

Nuts and seeds contain some essential fats, and because these fatty acids are “essential” a deficiency can greatly compromise our health. Up until about 50 years ago nuts and seeds were cold pressed in local mills, where people would regularly buy a fresh supply. Today, refined oils are the norm. These may last a long time in the bottle but they have little of the health-giving qualities of cold pressed oils and can have a detrimental effect on health.

It would take many, many pages to write about all the health benefits of fats and oils. Suffice it to say that every cell in the body, in order to function properly, needs the right fatty acids. And given that our cells are what make up our tissues, our organs and ultimately our bodies, should we not be giving them the best possible sustenance? If at all possible avoid industry-made oils and use the best quality cold pressed oils you can find – buy from a reputable manufacturer, keep the oil in the refrigerator and use within six weeks of opening. France is walnut country and cold pressed walnut oil can be easily found. I regularly recommend eating walnuts and using walnut oil in salads. Many people use olive oil in salads but it does not contain essential fatty acids.


Vegetables

All blood groups benefit from eating plenty of vegetables. Along with fruits, they are the basis of a healthy diet. Ensure they are as fresh as possible and eat them every day for lunch and dinner – raw or cooked, juiced, in salads, in soup – and as a snack. In the recipe section you will read about the tremendous benefits of eating these health-giving plants.

Green leafy vegetables such as kale, spring cabbage, spring greens (collards), turnip greens and dandelion leaves should be a regular part of your diet as they contain high levels of carotenoids and magnesium. Avoid tomatoes as they contain a lectin that is detrimental to the type B system. Corn should also be avoided.

Magnesium is a mineral you should be regularly obtaining through your diet. It is needed in high amounts in times of stress. Milk and cheese both contain magnesium, as well as calcium. Kale, however, contains about the same amount of calcium as milk but three times as much magnesium – yet another reason not to overlook those green leafy vegetables.

As a type B your immune system can be your weak point. Protect yourself against bacterial and viral infections by eating large helpings of vegetables. Garlic, maitake and shiitake mushrooms have been shown to boost immunity and you can also find them in capsule form.

Fruits

You may eat just about all fruits available. Vegetables and fruits are similar in their nutrient content and are our best source of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants. Fruits generally have less minerals and a higher sugar content than vegetables. However, the sugar comes in the form of fructose, which raises blood sugar levels much less rapidly than sucrose – the sugar found in table sugar and refined carbohydrates such as white flour. This is an important difference. Fruit can help maintain balanced energy levels, while refined sugars can make them fluctuate wildly.

If you wish to lose weight eat a piece of fruit 30 minutes before your meals. This practice has been shown to moderate appetite and encourage weight loss. However, if you eat fruit as a mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack it is wise to eat some form of protein with it in order to maintain good blood sugar levels. You could have a yogurt, a piece of cheese, or some walnuts. Balancing protein and carbohydrates helps ensure more even blood sugar levels.


Seham

Blood Type B
Age 37

The blood type diet has improved a number of health aspects that had been irritating me for years. I now have much better digestion and feel light rather than bloated after meals. I have less fatigue and my energy levels are more constant throughout the day. This diet has also helped me lose some weight. Another slight but nonetheless irritating problem was that I used to spend a good part of the morning blowing my nose. Thankfully I am now rid of my nasal congestion and runny nose.


What Can I Drink?

Green tea should be your number one choice. Apart from the cancer and cardiovascular protective benefits ascribed to it on page 162, green tea also has immune-stimulating effects that are particularly relevant for the sensitive B immune system. Green tea polyphenols, the active ingredient, have been shown to act in two ways to protect against micro-organisms: they enhance the body’s defence mechanisms and act on the micro-organisms themselves, making them less potent. See the food list on page 45 for other suitable drinks for type Bs.

type b: health issues

Weight and Sugar Metabolism

If you have a weight problem it may be enough for you simply to follow your blood type diet, as the lectins in certain foods can disrupt the way your body deals with sugar. These lectins can have an insulin-like effect on the cells. If the cells are continuously stimulated in this way they will transform sugar into fat and store it, instead of burning it as fuel. Too much insulin-like stimulation creates a condition called insulin resistance in which the cells no longer respond to insulin as they should. Dr D’Adamo has found that the lectins in wheat, corn, buckwheat, lentils, sesame seeds and peanuts have a detrimental effect on blood sugar metabolism in blood type B.

Another strategy that is helpful for type Bs is eating enough protein to balance out your carbohydrate intake. This will enable the two hormones that regulate blood sugar levels – insulin and glucagon – to work in harmony.

Some people are very sensitive to the protein/carbohydrate ratio and would benefit from ensuring this ratio is balanced at every meal and snack. For breakfast you may start out by replacing bread and the usual jam with bread and cheese or bread with a scrambled egg. For lunch and dinner always eat one of your good sources of protein with plenty of vegetables and some grains. Here is a visual tip to help balance protein and carbohydrates. Fill one quarter of the surface of your plate with protein (meat, fish, fowl or eggs) and the rest with mainly vegetables and a little rice or other grain. If you eat legumes at a meal, avoid grains as legumes are half protein and half carbohydrate. I find this way of balancing a meal is useful in helping my patients to balance their blood sugar levels and promote insulin efficiency.


Michel

Blood Type B
Age 54

It is not possible for me to state categorically that my good health and controlled weight are essentially due to the blood type diet; to my general care about what I eat and how, to the few nutrients that complement my diet, or to my good nature. Yet despite long work days, nights that are often too short and a fair amount of urban stress, I feel better than ever and now get through the winter without the usual cold.

What I can say with certainty is that (at least to me, a type B) following the blood type diet has neither become constraining, inconvenient nor cumbersome. I just choose the right thing when I have the choice. Every time I have no better choice at hand, or from time to time when I just feel strongly like it, I derogate without guilt. My guidelines are to be cautious about the foods that form the basis of my diet. Thus no one needs to notice and I don’t feel constrained either. I should even add that the blood type diet makes a quite lively and interesting topic for discussion around the dining table.


Your Immune System needs Support

I have found some of the most resistant bacterial infections in my B patients. As a precaution against any micro-organisms taking hold in your body eat plenty of the foods that have been shown to boost immunity. Vegetables and fruits in general are great for this, as is green tea (see page 161). Garlic is especially good, so add it to your salad dressing every day. Onions have potent antibacterial and antiviral activity – Russian scientists have extensively studied this effect. Chilli peppers, cayenne pepper and horseradish have also been shown to help with infections. And don’t forget, you are in the lucky group that is able to eat yogurt with its immune-stimulating power.

You should also ensure you consume a reasonable amount of fat in your diet and, above all, that you get the right ones. Eat fatty fish such as mackerel, sardines, tuna and salmon; and use flaxseed oil and walnut oil in your salads. They will all provide beneficial omega-3 oils.

blood type ab: general food recommendations

Unlike the other blood types, AB was not part of the evolutionary process but is the result of the mixing of types A and B. Type AB has been around for only about 1,000 years and makes up a mere five per cent of the population of the planet.

The French psychologist, Leone Bourdel, once described type AB as “the richest of the four temperaments as it possesses the advantages of the other three, but it is also the victim of its incompatibilities and is made of contradictions and incoherence”. In terms of food choices this same pattern shows up. Type AB is complex, sometimes resembling an A, sometimes a B and at other times it resembles its far away blood type ancestor type O.

I have noticed that several of my type AB patients have, on their own, adopted some eating habits that tie in with the findings of the research into blood type eating. They tend to have smaller meals which are easier to digest, they eat meat in reduced quantities, enjoy a good breakfast that includes some form of protein, and stick to regular mealtimes. All these steps ensure type ABs feel better and have more energy.

Meat and Poultry

With regard to digesting meat you resemble type A – your stomach acid tends to be low and digestive enzymes are lacking. Limit yourself to occasionally eating lamb, turkey and rabbit. When it comes to chicken, duck and guinea fowl you resemble type B and should avoid them.

Seafood

If you are not used to eating fish, increasing your intake of this valuable source of protein will significantly improve your diet. The A in you may make you prone to high cholesterol levels and eating fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids will help prevent and reduce this cardiovascular risk factor. The best fish for you are mackerel, sardines, tuna, herring and salmon (wild if possible). You can also eat fish that are not rich in fatty acids, as these contain other elements that benefit the cardiovascular system. You may eat mussels and scallops but avoid other shellfish.

Soya Products and Legumes

Tofu and tempeh are easily digestible protein sources for you. Legumes and lentils can be enjoyed almost every day, although you must stick to the ones without detrimental lectins. Lentils, broad (fava) beans, cannellini beans, white beans, pinto and northern beans are on your list. They provide a good source of complex carbohydrates and fibre. Legumes contain phytosterols and fibre that have cholesterol-lowering and cancer-protective effects. In addition, legumes encourage good bowel function, which protects against colon cancer and haemorrhoids.

Soya beans and the other legumes have approximately the same qualities. However, soya beans, and hence soya products, have a higher fat content, plenty of essential fatty acids, a higher protein content and an excellent amino acid profile. Soya is a good source of lecithin, which has been shown to lower cholesterol levels and help the liver and gall bladder do their work.

Soya also contains phytoestrogens that exert both a mild estrogenic and anti-estrogenic effect. In other words these compounds have a balancing effect on the hormonal system.

Grains

Cereals, breads and pasta are all made with grains. Type AB have adapted to this food category and you should therefore be able to enjoy them in your daily fare. Just make sure your consumption doesn’t push out the vegetables from your diet. As with all blood types, wheat is to be avoided if you have a weight problem and easy build-up of mucus in the respiratory tract. Vary your grain choices: eat millet, oats, rye, spelt, quinoa, rice and wheat if you can in view of the above considerations. Avoid corn and buckwheat.

If you have blood sugar irregularities in association with weight gain you will need to limit your grain consumption. You may eat sprouted grains as found in Essene bread (also called sprouted wheat bread). Although this is made with wheat, the sprouting process destroys the lectins that should normally be avoided. For more information on Essene bread see page 10.

Milk Products

This is where your B aspect comes into play. You can eat cheeses made from cow’s, sheep’s or goat’s milk, as well as yogurt and kefir. However, be aware of the fact that cheese does contain saturated fat and that your body could make excessive amounts of cholesterol from this fat. Milk products can also encourage mucus production in susceptible people. If you regularly develop respiratory problems or have a chronic condition such as asthma or hay fever, you may benefit from avoiding milk products for several months. Reintroduce them gradually once your immune system has become stronger.

Nuts, Seeds and their Oils

Nuts and seeds are a source of protein and fibre. Some contain valuable essential fatty acids and should be included regularly in the diet: walnuts and flaxseeds (linseeds) are my favourites and both are suitable for ABs.

The essential fatty acids in walnuts and flaxseeds are effective in reducing cholesterol levels and are a valuable food for good brain function. Walnuts and flaxseeds have a very cleansing effect in the intestinal tract, the seat of a great part of our immune system. Flaxseeds contain lignans that are transformed in the gut into substances that have anti-cancer effects. In the following section on health issues for ABs you will see that you need to be especially careful to protect yourself against cancer. Flaxseeds also reduce cholesterol levels. The omega-3 oils in walnuts and flaxseeds are beneficial for inflammatory and allergic conditions such as asthma and eczema.

Eat walnuts and flaxseeds regularly. In order to benefit from the essential fatty acids in flaxseeds it is important to reduce them to a powder before eating them. Grind them in an electric coffee grinder, keep in a refrigerator for no longer than five days and sprinkle 1–3 tablespoons on your food or mix in a glass of water and drink. Flaxseeds work wonders against constipation.


Afsaneh

Blood Type AB
Age 45

I suffered for many years from bloating, migraine, terrible nausea and constant fatigue. I was also overweight, and decided to turn to a nutritionist for help. On her advice, I began following the blood type diet and took appropriate herbs and nutrients for my condition.

In the beginning I found it difficult. At one point I was even quite discouraged as the initial results were poor. But I must admit I wasn’t following the recommendations very well. I set my mind on doing it seriously and felt the results within days. I had no more headaches or nausea and I lost weight.

Then I went on a two-week holiday to visit my family in an area of France where the staple foods are potatoes, pork, plenty of home-made cakes, wine and alcohol. I could not follow the blood type diet correctly but I tried my best. I ate as many vegetables and salads as possible and bought my own rye bread. I didn’t get the usual head-cracking migraines and was less constipated. Although certain symptoms came back, I still saw the benefits in the fact that my addiction for coffee had stopped and all the things that I used to like (coke, fried foods and white bread) didn’t appeal to me at all. After previous weight-loss diets, I would have cravings for chocolate, sugar and rich, creamy foods but for the first time my body wanted what was best for it.


Vegetables

Eat vegetables as often as you can. In our modern civilisation we have a tendency to eat too few vegetables for various reasons: they take some time to prepare (but really not that much), you need to shop more often because they need to be fresh, and many adults and children claim they do not like them.

Vegetables are the basis of a healthy diet. Ensure they are as fresh as possible and eat them every day for lunch and dinner – raw or cooked, juiced, in salads, in soup – and as a snack. You will find information about the tremendous benefits of eating these health-giving plants in the recipe section. Make green leafy vegetables such as kale, spring greens (collards), turnip greens and dandelion leaves a regular part of your diet as they contain high levels of carotenoids and magnesium.

Magnesium is a mineral you should be regularly obtaining through your diet. It is needed in high amounts in times of stress. Milk and cheese both contain magnesium, as well as calcium. Kale, however, contains about the same amount of calcium as milk but three times as much magnesium – yet another reason not to overlook those green leafy vegetables.

When making salad dressing avoid vinegar, which may irritate your stomach, and replace it with lemon juice. Use plenty of fresh herbs and regularly add garlic, which has anti-cancer, antimicrobial and cardiovascular effects. For your salad dressings use cold pressed walnut or flaxseed oil. For cooking, the only oil that will withstand the heat is olive oil. Do not heat cold pressed oils.

Fruit

Fruits are rich in phytonutrients and vitamins. Some of the fruits commonly eaten have been studied and are shown to have anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral effects. Blueberries and blackcurrants contain phytonutrients called anthocyanosides that strengthen blood vessel walls, protecting against arterial damage that can lead to cardiovascular disease. Apricots are rich in beta carotene and therefore protective against cancer. The Japanese have also isolated an anti-cancer substance in figs. Grapefruit (and other citrus fruits) have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer, and to lower cholesterol. For this latter effect you must go for the whole fruit and not just the juice. Strawberries reduce cholesterol and can block nitrosamines, a potent cancer-causing compound.

All these fruits and more are yours to eat and will contribute to your protection against cancer and cardiovascular disease – some health aspects you must particularly protect yourself from.

What Can I Drink?

Green tea is your best choice. It has cancer and cardiovascular protective benefits. Many Japanese studies have shown that drinking green tea (about 10 cups a day) reduces cholesterol levels, prevents the formation of blood clots and also helps relax blood vessel walls thus reducing high blood pressure. For other drinks see the food list on page 47.

type ab: health issues

Digestion

Your digestive makeup when it comes to protein resembles that of blood type A and blood type B. This means that you can eat a bit more animal protein than blood type A but should still watch the quantities at each sitting. You do not have enough stomach acid to digest large quantities of meat at a time. Overtaxing your system with foods that are not going to be properly metabolized will create toxicity in the digestive tract and then in the general system. This can cause symptoms such as headaches, eye problems, ear problems, respiratory problems such as excessive mucus formation, frequent need to clear the throat, blood sugar irregularities, muscle/joint aches and pains, skin problems, anxiety and irritability – to name but a few. Toxicity is also a forerunner of cancer, a health issue type ABs need to look out for.

Faulty digestion linked with too much animal protein and also the wrong choices can be a factor in weight gain.

Weight

Your weight has less to do with the amount of calories eaten than with what happens with sugar (glucose) and fats that enter your body – in other words your metabolism. Metabolism is the chemical and physical reactions that take place in our cells to turn fat and sugar into energy and protein into cells. The rate at which this happens varies from one person to the next. Some people have a slow metabolism and will put on weight easily. Others have a fast metabolism and will not put on weight even if they eat a lot. The efficiency with which you burn carbohydrates and fats to produce energy rather than to stock them in fat cells, will determine your capacity to lose weight and to remain slim. Lectins, exercise and specific nutrients involved in energy production all have their role to play here.

The lectins you should avoid can slow down your metabolism. They can block the proper utilization of insulin by the cells and cause insulin resistance. This means that despite the production of insulin your cells do not respond to it as they should and if this goes on for a long time the pancreas ends up producing more and more insulin that is actually not doing its job. The consequence of all this is that the sugar needed by the cells to produce energy is actually driven in another direction to be stored as body fat – and the upward scale to weight gain has begun. In many of my patients I have noticed that just by making the proper food choices (avoiding the bad lectins), without specially avoiding the foods that are traditionally thought of as being “fattening”, the pounds start falling off.

As with the other blood groups your best move is to stop eating the foods containing the lectins you should avoid, as well as those that are not going to be properly digested. Although most ABs who are in a state of good health should be able to eat wheat, if you need to lose weight avoid this grain. Refrain from eating large quantities of animal protein at each meal because you will have problems digesting it completely and therefore accumulate toxins. Remember the A in you restricts the amount of meat you should be eating. Instead choose tofu, tempeh, fish and milk products from your list of acceptable foods, as these are good muscle-building protein sources for you. You need to have a good active muscle mass in order to facilitate the chemical reactions that are going to enable you to burn fat to make energy.

Heart Disease

When it comes to cardiovascular health, you express the A in you. Take care of your cholesterol levels, check your blood pressure, reduce your stress and eat the foods that will keep you from forming blood clots.

Following the blood type diet will help you reduce your cholesterol levels if they are high, so choose legumes and lentils, tofu and tempeh, vegetables (carrots, garlic, onions, leeks), fruits (apples, grapefruit, pineapple), fatty fish with their beneficial oils (mackerel, sardines, salmon, tuna, herring), soya bean products, brown rice and oats, olive oil, walnuts and almonds. All these foods have been shown in scientific studies to lower cholesterol levels. Even if your levels are normal, you will benefit from this diet as it will prevent cholesterol levels from rising. You may eat eggs, although they do contain cholesterol. Eating eggs has never been shown to substantially raise cholesterol levels, so do not deprive yourself of this excellent food. High levels of cholesterol mainly come from the fact that our body manufactures it from sugar and synthesises it from fats. Some of us are better at this than others, As and ABs for instance.

You may continue to eat some meat as long as you stick to approximately three servings per week. Eat brazil nuts as they contain a surprising amount of selenium – between 200 and 5,000mcg of selenium per 100 grams. Selenium has been shown to help prevent oxidation of cholesterol and prevent platelet aggregation, a possible factor in blood clots. A Finnish study has shown that the more selenium you have in your blood the less likely you are to die of a heart attack. Other good sources of selenium are tuna, swordfish, liver and garlic.

Another aspect in cardiovascular disease is the thickness of your blood. Around 80 per cent of strokes and heart attacks are due to a blood clot. Your best bet is to eat the foods that have been shown to help control blood clotting. Garlic is a very important one. Crush raw garlic in your salad dressings and use lemon juice instead of vinegar; the crushing and the acid from the lemon juice help release a substance called ajoene, a very potent anticoagulant. Onions are another amazing food that can neutralize blood clots that could form after eating a meal high in fats. Fatty fish are also valuable: the oils, as well as other compounds in fish, have anticlotting activity. Drinking one glass of good quality red wine with your main meal will help prevent blood clotting. Resveratrol is a substance produced by the fermentation of grape skins during the making of red wine; it has been shown to prevent blood platelets from clumping together. You can also drink red grape juice, but you will need three times as much to get the same benefit as one glass of wine. Green tea contains a clot-dissolving compound called catechin. Including olive oil in your diet is another golden opportunity to protect your arteries against blood clots. Fresh pineapple has also been shown to protect the arteries.


Patricia

Blood Type AB
Age 42

Since adolescence I have been struggling with my diet. Today I am a violin soloist and at 14 years of age I began my first exams. My mother forced me to eat meat because she thought it would give me extra strength. I invariably noticed that my digestion would be sluggish and heavy and that I wanted to sleep after meals. I also had severe stomach burning after breakfasts consisting of orange juice, bread and black tea.

For 20 years I went from one diet to another, losing weight then gaining more than I had lost. Digestion was always a problem. My life as a solo musician was very demanding so my stress levels were high. At age 38, I divorced and went into a depression that lasted nine months. Another episode of dieting made me lose 20kg and gain 25.

When I first saw Karen I had an underfunctioning thyroid and my attitude to food was one of disgust. By following the blood type diet I rediscovered the foods that I liked as a child and was naturally inclined to eat. After three months my digestion became normal again – no more stomach burn and bloating. My vitality has returned and I have good positive energy for performing. My leg cramps are almost gone and my skin allergies have disappeared. I don’t feel the irrepressible need for sugar and my cravings have disappeared, the oedema in my ankles has gone and my memory has improved. Today I take pleasure in eating the foods that are good for my blood type because it is actually the food that I like. I also remain wide awake after meals!


Cancer

There is a clear association between blood types A and AB and cancer. This does not mean that you will get cancer, nor does it mean that blood type O and B will not get cancer. It means that being an A or an AB is another risk factor such as smoking, being in contact with environmental carcinogens, having nutrient deficiencies, eating a bad diet etc … Certain inherent factors in blood type AB make this blood type a friendly ground for the development of cancer. When cancer cells develop in ABs they tend to be accepted by the immune system as friends instead of being fought and killed.

However, with all we know now about cancer prevention – the value of stress reduction, hormone balance (estrogen/progesterone), research into foods, nutrients with anti-cancer activity and now more recently with the blood type diets – it is possible to take various steps to prevent its development.

Apart from the foods that have been shown to be protective against cancer in general and even help avoid the spread of cancer, Dr D’Adamo in his research has discovered that some foods are specifically beneficial for blood type AB in the fight against cancer. Snails – the kind you eat in France in a parsley and garlic sauce – contain a lectin that has anti-cancer properties specially suited to type AB. Peanuts (in their red skins), a beneficial food for ABs, also have a lectin with anti-cancer activity towards breast cancer cells and cancer cells in general. Lentils and the grain amaranth are also recommended for their anti-cancer effects.

Soya, which has been shown extensively in studies to protect against cancer, is especially well suited to ABs. Among the other foods that are highly recommended are fruits and vegetables. They contain nutrients, phytonutrients and fibre that have all been shown to have these protective effects. Eating large amounts of fruits and vegetables can do as much as cut your cancer risk in half. According to the American National Cancer Institute, you should be eating at least five portions of fruit and vegetables every day. In this case more is better.

Garlic and onions have been shown in studies to contain substances that prevented laboratory animals from getting cancer – even though they were exposed to potent carcinogens. Green vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli are packed with anti-cancer substances that are not destroyed during cooking. Most of the cancer-protective nutrients are in the dark green leaves so do not discard these from vegetables such as cabbage. Grapefruits and lemons – the whole fruit, including the pith – also have a collection of anti-cancer compounds. One of the best ways of benefiting from all the goodness of these citrus fruits is to add them to your freshly-juiced vegetables. You may leave the thin yellow skin on the lemons but remove the coloured skin from the grapefruit.

Pineapple is well known as a digestive aid but less well known for its anti-cancer properties. The enzyme bromelain in pineapple appears to activate the immune system to help the body combat cancer cells. Research by Dr Taussig in Hawaii has shown that pineapple inhibits the formation of tumours. Brussels sprouts and broccoli contain indoles that can protect against cancer, especially breast cancer. Legumes, a beneficial food for type AB, also have anti-cancer qualities.

a final word

The intention with this book is to get you started on the blood type diet so that you can discover its benefits for yourself. I encourage my patients to follow the recommendations for one month and then to re-evaluate. There is nothing like one’s own experience for evaluating its effect. But don’t be picky about which bits you follow. Do it completely, wholeheartedly. You have nothing to lose. On the contrary, you have much to gain.

Once you have experienced the benefits of “eating right for your type”, your body will know what it wants. Some foods that you didn’t like at all and that are good for your blood type will begin to seem all right – maybe even very good. This is what I, and my patients, have experienced. However, this does not happen immediately – you must go far enough into the diet to achieve a sense of well-being. I believe that as your body gets healthier it recognizes what it truly needs and your food choices for your blood type become natural. Do be aware, though, that a strong attraction to a food rarely means there is something in it that your body needs. This phenomena often has to do with dependency. For example, sugar cravings recede as you eliminate lectins that have an effect on sugar balance, highly sweet foods, foods you have an intolerance to and when you add certain nutrients. Simply give your body time to reach its natural equilibrium on the blood type diet. Then listen – you will find your body knows what it needs.

the food lists

The following food lists, though somewhat simplified, are based on the original lists developed by Dr Peter D’Adamo. They are designed to help you make day-to-day decisions about what to include in your diet. If you wish for a more in-depth examination than is possible here, please refer to Eat Right For Your Type and Live Right For Your Type (see bibliography).



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