If you’ve ever thought about dieting, or tried to choose a diet to go on, then you might have heard of the Blood Type Diet, developed by Peter J. D’Adamo. Based on the idea of eating certain foods based on your blood type, the diet claims to helps your body digest food better, boost energy, and prevent chronic diseases – But does it live up to the hype?
The blood type diet lays out healthy eating plans for each blood type, that can be summarised as follows:
- Type A: mainly vegetarian (rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains) and includes turkey and seafood
- Type AB: mainly fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, tofu, dairy, fish, and lamb
- Type B: includes fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, fish, seafood, meat, and dairy
- Type O: high in protein, consisting of meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and some grains
At first glance, the blood type diets seem to be grounded in fact. According to a 2014 study, the type A diet is associated with a lower waist circumference, BMI, cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure and insulin. The AB diet is associated with lower cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure and insulin, while the type O diet may help lower triglycerides. However, these results held even for subjects of different blood types, showing that you can benefit from these diets regardless of what your blood type actually is.
In fact, the reason why these diets work is because they promote a healthier way of eating. More plant-based diets, like the type A diet, have been shown to reduce the risks of chronic diseases like heart disease and some cancers, while vegan diets offer more protection against high blood pressure, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and death from heart disease than lacto-ovo vegetarian dieting.
Choosing a type A or AB diet may help you shed pounds and reduce chronic disease risk factors, but that’s because they’re in line with proper nutrition and not necessarily because they’re optimised for a specific blood type. Rather than buy into the hype that surrounds eating-for-your-blood-type, tailor your diet according to your needs and lifestyle.