The Eat Right for Your Type diet encourages people to eat certain foods and avoid others based on their blood type -- A, B, AB, or O. Peter J. D'Adamo, a naturopathic doctor and the author of Eat Right for Your Type: The Individualized Diet Solution to Staying Healthy, Living Longer & Achieving Your Ideal Weight, believes blood types not only affect the digestive system, but that a person’s blood type also determines their susceptibility to certain illnesses and how they should eat and exercise.
The digestive tract retains the memory of ancient times, so type O's metabolisms will benefit from lean meats, poultry, and fish. Keep grains, bread, and legumes at a minimum, and enjoy vigorous exercise, often.
Flourishes on vegetarian diets. The type A diet contains soy proteins, grains, and organic vegetables and encourages gentle exercise.
A tolerant digestive system that can process low-fat dairy, meat, and produce but, among other things, should avoid wheat, corn, and lentils. Type B’s should exercise moderately.
Sensitive digestive tract and should avoid chicken, beef, and pork but enjoy seafood, tofu, dairy, and most produce. The fitness regimen for ABs is calming exercises.
For a slightly more “scientific” explanation, D'Adamo says that the right diet for your blood type comes down to lectins, food proteins each blood type digests differently. When people eat foods containing lectins incompatible with their blood type, they may experience inflammation, bloating, a slower metabolism, even diseases such as cancer. The best way to avoid these effects is to eat foods meant for your blood type.
Beneficial foods for your blood type act like medicine, neutral foods like food, while avoid foods act like a poison.
For example, type O’s should steer clear of whole wheat and wheat germ because eating gluten is like putting the wrong kind of octane in the car. It clogs the system.
Within the diet itself are generally good diet recommendations, because the words “avoid vegetables and fruit,” for example, are not used. People from the American Dietetic Association say, however, that the science is not there to support the claims, and research on blood type diets is very few. The presumption that each blood type thrives on certain foods but not others also give critics a doubtful outlook on this diet.
Some critics are refuting D'Adamo's theory that there is a connection between certain blood types and specific diseases. Though the theory has been long been investigated, no conclusions have been reached, says Andrea Wiley, PhD, an associate professor of anthropology at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va.
Then why has Eating Right for Your Blood Type diet become so popular over the last decade?
Perhaps it is because dieting (in general) is one of those things people feel desperate about, and the blood-type diet sounds more scientific than some others? Simply put, people looking into this diet should be aware that there is the very lack of a solid scientific background that bothers most experts.
To give D’Adamo a little credit, however, blood type as a foundational start to evaluating disease and optimum health is not totally in left field. For many years, scientists wondered why type O's were more likely to than other blood types to develop stomach ulcers or stomach cancer. In 1993, scientists found that ulcers were caused by helicobacter pylori, a bacterium which had a special affinity for one of the unique type O proteins. A geneticist at Oxford University who checked for other significant associations between the ABO blood types and the incidence of disease, reported that there were only seven; the relationships were often weak; and most, like ulcers, originated somewhere along the digestive tract. If the ABO blood type was that much of a key, these relationships would strong and plentiful.
There may be important interactions with between certain foods and one's blood type, but according to D'Adamo, unfortunately, scientific evidence is not evident in his research or book. Instead, he relies on a collection of anecdotal reports and case histories. His speculation that the one gene responsible for the ABO blood type could exert such a dominant influence over everything else is unable to stand on its own merits.
Resources: dadamo.com, everydiet.org, webmd.com, livestrong.com