Weight Loss, Dieting & Obesity
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The Blood Type Diet - Eat Right for Your Type - (a.k.a. Eat Right 4 Your Type) - by Dr. Peter J. D'Adamo: Diet Book Review and Comments
Eat Right For Your Type, often referred to as "The Blood Type Diet", has proved enormously popular over the past decade or more, based on alleged 'scientific basis' to good diet. The basic premise is that no two people are the same, that everyone is different, we all have different genetic compositions, and therefore we should all have different diets. A "one-diet-suits-all" approach is therefore derided.
So far, so good. It sounds logical on an intuitive level. The logic begins to fall down when all of the world's six billion people with their six billion different genetic structures are bunched into four different diet groups. Pardon me? What happened to us all being individuals and all different? Even the allegedly 'scientific' premise of a different diet for each blood group doesn't stand up to close scrutiny. There are many more than just four blood groups. Sure, they all fall under the banners of either Type A, B, AB, or O, but totally ignores more specific blood types such as Rh factors (Rhesus factors -- positive or negative), vel subtypes and more.
The book quotes anthropological sources to justify evolutionary factors producing different blood types. (Oh no.. can anybody spell "A-D-O-L-P-H H-I-T-L-E-R"?). This leads to the 'science' that O Blood type people are the least evolved and should be on predominantly protein based diets, like the unevolved cavemen their genes say they are. Supposedly, A Type blood group (predominantly white European background) are a bit more evolutionary advanced, having moved into different geographical and climatic areas of the globe and evolved on a different diet with more grains and vegetables and therefore, allegedly, should have a predominantly vegetarian diet. Type B are alleged the most modern, highest evolved of the human species (predominantly East Asian) and are best suited by a mixed diet including dairy... (hmmm.. so how do we explain that a large proportion of people of East Asian extraction have lactose intolerance problems, Dr D'Adamo?). Then finally there's Blood Type AB, said to be an evolutionary enigma resulting from interbreeding of Types A and B and only found in relatively recent history of the human race.
The racist undertones of the theory are unmistakable. That they are allegedly "proved" by "science" is highly dubious. Dr Peter D'Adamo makes extensive use of biographical sources for his contentions with the list published in a chapter at the end of the book. The weaknesses of his "science" quickly become evident to anyone who cares to read the small, boring, biographical lists. Almost half of the 'scientific' studies he quotes are studies that he has published himself. Of the remainder, it is difficult to find a single reference that is more recent than about fifty years ago with most being even older.
Make no mistake. There is no modern science behind "Eat Right For Your Type - The Blood Type Diet".
Now, let's talk about a couple of solid home truths about blood types:
Medically, it is now universally acknowledged that, while blood typing is necessary for successful blood transfusions and organ transplants to maximize compatibility, blood types themselves have absolutely NO diagnostic value.
Blood types are not unique to humans. They apply within all animal species. If Dr. Peter J. D'Adamo is to be believed, then some wild dogs and cats should really be vegetarians! How, also, can different blood types be explained in animal species that are not found globally, but have only ever existed (evolved?) within the same geographical area? I'd appreciate Dr. D'Adamo giving an explanation for different blood types in Australian kangaroos, for example.
Given the above resounding condemnation of the theory and alleged 'science' underpinning the theories of Dr D'Adamo, why do I still give his diet book a recommendation?
Scientific bunkum of his Blood Type theory of race and diet aside, all four of his plans still do have significant merit.
In conclusion, there is sufficient health and nutritional merit to Dr Peter J. D'Adamo's Eat Right 4 Your Type's four plans that they warrant a recommendation, despite and not because of his blood type diet theories.
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