What You Need to Know About the Blood Group Diet

November 12, 2012

What You Need to Know About the Blood Group Diet

The blood group diet is a diet plan that depends entirely upon what blood type you are. Many celebrities claim to have lost weight on this diet, including actress Elizabeth Hurley and the British singer Sir Cliff Richard. Although the blood group diet has many advocates, there is no solid scientific proof that this diet is an effective and safe means to lose weight and keep it off. The blood group diet was designed by naturopathic physician Peter D’Amato and published in his 1997 blood group diet book “Eat Right 4 Your Type.” D’Amato claims that specific chemicals called antigen receptors in blood causes them to react badly to certain foods. Different blood types have different antigen receptors. Antigens are any chemical not from the body that somehow gets inside of the body. D’Amato also claims that people with different blood types have different enzymes in their digestive systems because of the antigens. Blood O The oldest known blood type in humans is blood type O. D’Amato teaches that people with type O blood would do best eating foods that our earliest humanoid ancestors would have done – meat and proteins like nuts and eggs. People with blood type O are encouraged to eat a lot of protein. The second oldest human blood type is blood type A, including people with A+ or A- blood types. The earliest known people with blood type A lived about 17,000 to 20,000 years ago, when farming was the hot new invention. D’Amato suggests that people with blood type A should eat a mostly vegetarian diet with barely any meat.

The next group is blood type B including people with B+ or B- blood types, thought to have arisen in the human species about 12,000 years ago. D’amato calls this group the nomads and claims that his group needs a wide variety of all food groups, including meat and vegetables, in order to stay healthy and lose weight.

The most recent blood group is AB. D’amato states that these are the most evolved group that can handle a modern diet. Their diet should consist of equal amounts of protein and produce.

Does It Work?

There is no evidence that following the blood group diet will help people lose weight. Those people who do lose weight on the diet may do so through the power of the placebo effect. Eventually, they will gain the weight right back. The only way to lose weight and keep it off is by eating less and exercising more so that there is a gradual weight loss of about 1 to 3 pounds per week.

There are also problems with D’amato’s claims about how blood types evolved. After the publication of D’amato’s book, science discovered that the oldest human blood type was A, not O. Evolutionary biologists are not sure what the first human’s diet was like. Proto-human teeth show meat eating and vegetable eating teeth, depending on which species is being looked at. Just which proto-human species had common ancestors with homo sapiens is still a matter of debate.

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