Is it healthier to eat according to your blood type?

There is some evidence that your blood type has an effect on your health. General heart health is an example of this since the American Heart Association has found that people with type A, type B or type AB blood are more likely than those with type O to have a heart attack. But that’s not all good news for the Os type. Another study conducted in 2019 concluded that people with type O blood is more likely to be bitten by mosquitoes. (Hey, you can’t win them all.)

There is also a faction of people who believe that a certain diet based on your blood type can improve health and reduce the risk of certain diseases. This nutritional philosophy was popularized by a naturopathic doctor named Dr. Peter D’Adamo and described in his 1996 book. Eat well 4 your type. The diet guide landed on the New York Times bestseller list and has since sold millions of copies.

But will changing your diet based on your blood type actually make you healthier? The science behind D’Adamo’s guide has been largely debunked — or at the very least, largely unconfirmed to date. I asked Anna Rios, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, about the nutrition plan and the potential benefits or dangers associated with the blood type diet.

But first, here’s what the blood type diet is and how it bodes to making you healthier.

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Eating for Blood Type: The Blood Type Diet Explained

eat well for your type of book on the table

D’Adamo’s 1996 book made waves when it came out, but there’s little evidence to support the idea that eating a blood type-specific diet will improve health.

D’Adamo Personalized Nutrition

The general idea of ​​the blood type diet is that there are optimal foods for people with different blood types O, A, B and AB. Part of the claim is based on the idea that blood types serve as maps of our ancestral history and genetics, and that the foods commonly eaten by our ancestors are better suited to our bodies even today.

Below is an overview of the four main blood types and what D’Adamo posits is the best type of diet for each.

A-Type: The agrarian or the cultivator. According to D’Adamo, people with type A blood should avoid meat — especially red meat — and eat a plant-based diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains. Due to their “more sensitive immune system”, they should also avoid processed foods and opt for organic foods whenever possible.

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Type B: People with blood type B are referred to as “nomads” by D’Adamo. Type B people are encouraged to eat plants but also most meats (except chicken). The diet also warns against eating corn, wheat, tomatoes, peanuts, and certain seeds.

Type AB: People with type AB blood, or “enigmas” as D’Adamo calls them, are a mix between types A and B. The blood diet encourages these people to eat seafood, tofu, dairy products, beans, green vegetables and cereals, but avoid corn. , beef and chicken. D’Adamo argues that Type ABs also have lower levels of stomach acid and should therefore avoid caffeine and alcohol.

Type Y: Also known as the “hunter,” D’Adamo claims people with this blood type should eat a high-protein diet rich in red meat, fish, poultry, and certain fruits and vegetables. This precursor to the Paleo diet warns Type O against eating grains, legumes, and dairy.

raw red meat on a chopping block with vegetables

According to the blood type diet, type O requires more meat in their diet than other blood types.

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Does the Blood Type Diet actually work?

To date, there is very little evidence that adhering to strict dietary recommendations based on blood type will improve health outcomes. “The blood type diet has been repeatedly debunked by new and improved research,” Rios says. “People who claim to start feeling better on this diet usually do so because they start cooking more at home and eating more whole foods and less processed foods, which may improve their health. ‘anyone.”

The most comprehensive study was done in 2013 by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and found “no evidence to validate the purported health benefits of blood diets.” That said, many of the nutrition plans featured in D’Adamo’s book may be healthier than your current eating habits, as they do focus on natural, whole, unprocessed foods.

fruits and vegetables in the supermarket shelf

D’Adamo suggests that people with type A blood are healthier when they adhere to a plant-based diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables.

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When it comes to health, does blood type matter?

Blood type isn’t something dietitians take into consideration when providing medical nutrition therapy, Rios says. “As dietitians, we focus on the patient as an individual,” she adds. “Important things to consider include medical history, chronic illnesses, current lifestyle, food allergies, food intolerances, sensitivities, stress, and digestion.”

Should You Try The Blood Type Diet? Is it safe?

Following the blood type diet can be “extremely restrictive,” Rios says, and if you’re not guided by a dietitian, it could lead to other health issues. There are many things to consider before excluding certain food groups from your diet.

If you have or are at risk high blood pressure Where heart diseasefor example, a diet high in red meat (as the type O diet suggests) could lead to problems. diabetics, on the other hand, it is often advised to avoid eating cheese, dairy products and other foods in large quantities. Other health problems, including IBS and iron deficiency, can be exacerbated by careful consuming or avoiding certain food categories.

The Bottom Line on the Blood Type Diet

Although trying a nutritional plan defined for your blood type should not have drastic negative consequences (at least not for those without underlying health conditions), there is also very little evidence that it will improve your health significantly.

Most nutrition experts suggest a balance in the overall diet, including a mix of lean proteins and vitamin-rich vegetables along with whole grains, nuts, and seeds. For losing weightdiets like keto and paleo Plans are known to get quick results, but if the goal is to improve overall health, including heart health, restrictive fad diets often get failing grades from nutritionists, dieticians and other health professionals.

So what is the healthiest diet?

If you’re looking for a nutritional plan or diet to follow to improve your overall health, the Mediterranean diet has been ranked number 1 healthiest diet by US News and World Report for five consecutive years. Based largely on typical Mediterranean-style cooking, this nutrition plan includes plenty of lean fish, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and seeds. It also encourages limited sugar and salt intake and prioritizes healthy fats like olive oil.

Learn more about health and wellness

The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical or health advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have about a medical condition or health goals.

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