Several years ago, a very interesting new idea with regard to weight loss became all the rage: eating for your blood type. This concept answered the age-old question of why not all eating plans work for all people. That much seems undeniable – people are very different with regard to the types of food that works for them, as well as the type of exercise program. A weight loss regime that works for one person won’t necessarily work for someone else – that much we know.
Some experts started to link this to blood type. There are four main blood types, and according to this way of thinking, each type represents a body type. If you eat the food that is right for your type, you will lose weight effortlessly. Conversely, most weight problems are the result of eating the food that’s wrong for your type. As well, there are types of exercise that are suitable for some types and not for others.
Though mainstream science ridiculed this idea, thousands of people followed the eating plan for their blood type and many had excellent results. This is the theory: the different blood types evolved at different times in human history, and even nowadays people with those types have traits that are specific to humans at that stage of evolution. This may sound confusing, but it’s clearer with an example: According to this theory, ‘o’ type blood, because it’s the simplest type, evolved first. At that time in human history, people had not yet developed agriculture. They were primarily hunters, and ate meat and greens; they ate no wheat, and no dairy, because those foods developed later on with the advent of farming. Humans at that time in history also exercised vigorously.
So, if you have ‘o’ type blood, your body is similar to this early human physiology. If you eat a lot of carbohydrates and don’t exercise vigorously, you will have weight problems and other health problems, because you are not eating and exercising in the way that is right for your blood type and body type. To lose weight and be healthy, if have ‘o’ type blood, you have to eat plenty of red meat and vegetables, and very little wheat or dairy. You should also have a strenuous physical activity, like running or weight lifting, that you practice several times a week.
But if you are a type ‘a’ or ‘b’, for example, that advice would be all wrong for you. These types developed somewhat later, after agriculture was established, so these individuals can and should eat more fruits, vegetables, and grains. People with ‘ab’ type blood are lucky; their type evolved last, after humans had incorporated all types of food into their diet. So ‘ab’s can basically eat anything – within reason – and not gain weight.
Over the past six or seven years, many people have followed this plan and lost a lot of weight. There are a few problems with it, though. First of all, as mentioned before, there is no hard scientific evidence that shows that people with different blood types are physiologically different. It’s an appealing idea, but it can’t be proven as yet. Also, some of the blood type diets (particularly the diet for type ‘o’) are very restrictive. In fact, the type ‘o’ diet is rather like Atkins at its most restrictive, and some nutritionists feel that this might lead to problems with high cholesterol in the long run. On the other hand, proponents of the diet argue that type ‘o’ people are precisely those who can afford to eat a lot of meat without negatively affecting their cholesterol level. If someone with a different blood type ate in this way, it might be a problem, but not for “o’s”. And it is certainly true that some people develop or don’t develop cholesterol problems seemingly regardless to their dietary intake.
If the theory has no basis, though, how would we explain the weight loss that so many people have experienced? It may be simpler than you think, actually. Any one of the four blood type eating plans, if followed correctly, would have you eating healthier, more natural food. Some, like the ‘o’ diet, are also quite restrictive. It seems likely that these diets make you lose weight in and of themselves, regardless of what blood type you are!