Inside Scoop: This blood type diet review digs through the research and answers the question, does it really work for weight loss?
This post was submitted by Amanda Wilks, a passionate writer and cooking enthusiast.
People nowadays are becoming increasingly interested in healthy living as many innovative diets and programs appear. One of the most controversial and thought-provoking diets is the Blood Type Diet. In this blood type diet review article, we’ll uncover what this diet entails, dig through the scientific research and help answer the question… Does it really work for weight loss?
What Is the Blood Type Diet?
Created by a naturopath named Peter J. D’Adamo, the Blood Type Diet recommends various foods based on people’s blood type. Dr. D’Adamo created this approach starting from the premise that each person’s unique genetic makeup influences their nutrition and their body’s response to certain foods.
According to the diet’s proponent, foods react chemically with your blood type, which in turn influences digestion. Therefore, if you eat meals that meet the Blood Type Diet’s requirements, you will manage to digest them more efficiently, thus losing weight and improving your health. These are the main claims behind this famous eating plan.
Certain foods are encouraged, while others are restricted, and it’s all based on the characteristics Dr. D’Adamo outlines as being specific to blood types O, A, B, and AB. Therefore, the Blood Type Diet has an ABO structure, and it is divided into four separate eating plans:
Type O. The eating plan for the most common blood type in the O, namely type O, is one that is extremely high in protein and low in carbs. It is heavily centered around meat of all kinds, but fish should be the main source of nourishment. Peanuts, corn, legumes, and beans should be avoided, and full-fat dairy should be consumed in moderation.
Type A. The personalized diet for blood type A is a mostly vegetarian one. Those who adopt it are advised to steer clear of meat and dairy as much as possible or remove it altogether. The recommended sources of dietary fats for this blood type are plant-based like coconut oil, olive oil, nuts, and seeds. Vegetables, fruits, and legumes are also staples, along with gluten-free grains. Coffee and alcohol are not recommended. Moreover, people in this category should be eating organic produce only as they are extremely sensitive to pesticides and food additives.
Type B. The diet for blood type B is very similar to the paleo diet, as it is rich in unprocessed meats, fruits, and veggies. Dairy is also accepted, as long as you’re not lactose intolerant. Peanuts, corn, lentils, and chicken should be replaced with other protein sources. Water, freshly squeezed juice, and green tea are highly recommended drinks to blood type B individuals.
Type AB. As you might have already guessed by now, the endorsed meal plan for blood type AB is a combination of foods suggested for blood types A and B. What’s more, red meat is off the table for AB people and should be replaced with fish and seafood. Coffee is perfectly fine if desired.
Blood Type Diet Review
Starting off on a positive note, it is important to discuss what the Blood Type Diet brings to the table as far as benefits are concerned. The diet has three notable benefits that immediately come to mind.
IT PROMOTES HEALTHY WHOLE FOODS & MEALS
The Blood Type Diet’s main claim to fame besides its unique approach to weight loss is that it heavily promotes whole foods in all its four versions. Processed foods, added sugars, trans fats, refined oils, and unhealthy additives that turn our food into a ticking time bomb are completely out of the question.
Instead, the meal plan focuses on fresh and organic fruits and veggies, lean cuts of meat, and other healthy sources of vitamins and protein. Starch and heavy dairy consumption is generally not recommended, which results in light dishes that improve our wellbeing. There is also room for a bit of indulgence despite the many restrictions in Dr. D’Adamo’s approach.
IT OFFERS A VARIED MENU
The gist of most modern diets seems to be restriction. By restricting certain food groups or organizing your meals by color and so on, these programs have a cohesive theme. However, it can be awfully limiting to stick to very strict principles all the time. Fortunately, the Blood Type Diet is much more diverse.
Although restrictions exist in each one of the blood-type-based four eating plans, they usually involve either unhealthy foods or food ingredients that tend to irritate the digestive systems of some people that are sensitive to gluten or dairy. There is no fixed menu, so you have plenty of options ahead.
IT MAY SUSTAIN WEIGHT LOSS
The most common questions about the Blood Type’s Diet benefits is related to weight loss. Can I shed those extra pounds while on the Blood Type Diet? Recent studies have shown that you can. According to a study conducted in 2014 involving 1,455 participants, those who followed the diets for A and AB blood types had a lower BMI and waist circumference at the end of the study. But did blood type matter? Continue reading to find out.
It’s still worth to note though that significant decreases in blood pressure, serum cholesterol, and triglyceride levels were observed. Triglyceride levels were lower for those who followed the type O diet, which proves that healthy eating does pay off.
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Just like any other diet, the Blood Type Diet has its drawbacks. Even though it can be highly effective in some cases, it might not be as failproof as its proponent wants you to think. Before taking a decision, take a look at the diet’s most common shortcomings:
IT HAS INCONCLUSIVE RESULTS
Unfortunately, the same 2014 study cited above yielded some inconclusive results at some point. First, participants in the type B diet group showed no significant health improvement in any of the said areas. What is more, people on the blood type A or AB diets saw health benefits regardless of their blood type.
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IT IS BASED ON A FLAWED HYPOTHESIS
When Dr. D’Adamo first proposed his hypothesis about how blood type and genetics influence digestion, the medical community was intrigued and started doing research right away. In 2014, a research group at the University of Toronto officially declared D’Adamo’s theory false.
Canadian scientists found that there is no correlation between blood type, food, and weight loss, at least not in the specific way described by Dr. D’Adamo. In the absence of more research papers to back its claims, the Blood Type Diet is still considered by many researchers an example of pseudoscience at work.
IT DOESN’T TAKE INTO ACCOUNT BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY
The menu options of the Blood Type Diet might be diverse, but its approach to human biology is not. At the end of the day, every single person is different and responds in various ways to the same conditions. Therefore, the diet might work for some, but have no effect on others.
Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo designed the Blood Type Diet based on a revolutionary principle, but the research behind the topic is still inconclusive. Still, if you want to try it on for size, it’s an eating plan that offers variety while promoting whole foods and delivering some results. If you feel like it’s a way of eating that you can sustain in the long run then go for it. You just need to find out if it is right for you.
Amanda Wilks is a passionate writer, contributing author for TheKitchenAdvisor, and cooking enthusiast. She enjoys writing about nutrition, healthy eating, and cooking methods. Through her writings, she hopes to inspire others to make smart choices regarding their own diet. Learn more about Amanda on Twitter.