Dr. Patterson Stark
Dr. Patterson Stark


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Choosing Your "Perfect Diet"

Never before in our history have we had such variety in the quality and types of food we eat. And, as many of you are aware, over the years, there have been many different diets and fads. Some have been good, and others, not so good. As a clinician, I have observed the negative effects of poor diet on digestion, on immunity, and on the mind. Fifteen years ago I taught doctors how to examine their patients to discover if their metabolism was fast or slow. The information allowed the doctors to prescribe diets based on genetic predisposition, digestive ability, and psychological profile. This "metabolic therapy" was one of the first Western breakthroughs in therapeutic nutrition.
Some popular diets use food groups to stimulate metabolism. Others are concerned with discovering food allergens and eliminating them from the diet, central concepts in calming the immune system and decreasing hypersensitivity reactions.

The ability to adapt to different food types varies from person to person. What is needed is a strategic approach to our diet and methods to evaluate its effectiveness. The human body gives off many subtle signals we first must notice, then process. If we are attuned to these messages, the end product can be radiant health. It is my intent to show you how to find the right diet for your body.

Recently, a new theory has emerged supporting the idea that our Blood Type (A,B,O,AB) appears to affect the body's ability to more efficiently utilize certain foods and not others. Each of the Blood Types O, A, B and AB seems to chemically react with particular kinds of food. Supposedly, these reactions are produced by chemicals on the surface of red blood cells reacting with chemicals called "lectins" which are found in some foods. Clumping of the cells then occurs which can result in a variety of physical signs and symptoms. Blood/food reactions appear to indicate a genetic and anthropologic predisposition for selecting or omitting specific foods from our diet. Determined by Blood Type, food can be very good for you, neutral or detrimental to your health. Below is a list of some foods which may be beneficial/harmful for each of the different blood groups.

In my opinion, eating according to Blood Type comes very close to the mark for discovering foods which could very possibly lead to a longer, healthier life. There are a few points that might be difficult to prove or explain; however, here is a place for us to begin our quest for the appropriate diet, for the optimal way to eat. The definitive book on the subject is, Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type by Dr.Peter J.D. D'Adamo.

Type O Blood is the universal donor. On the surface of Type O red blood cells there are no reactive groups. Type O is the first blood type found dating back to 50,000 BC, originating in Africa and Europe, and comprising about 60% of the population. Typically, these are the hunters/meat eaters. "O's" do well on HIGH PROTEIN, low carbohydrate diets and have a difficult time eating refined foods or grains. Meat and fresh veggies are great for this diet.

Appearance of the three other blood groups (A,B,AB) was at a later time, stemming from mutations of the O Group. These blood types developed largely due to geographic location and availble food supply, ie. grains and vegetables. In general, there is a high percentage of Type A in Asians as well as in Europeans. Type B seems to have come from the base of the Himalayas and from Eastern Europe. The most recent type to emerge is a combination of A and B, called "AB", in existence for about 2000 years.

I will now summarize foods that are beneficial, or harmful to a particular blood type.

Type 0

Food summary: ORGANIC FREE RANGE meats, poultry, and fish are favorite foods of this blood type. Avoiding bacon, pork and goose is recommended. Avoid domesticated grains, milk or cultured products. Soy cheese and soymilk are excellent sources of calcium in this is zero dairy diet. Fresh vegetables, pinto beans, azuki beans, black-eyed peas are highly beneficial. Pumpkin seeds and walnuts can be eaten, but brazil nuts, cashews, peanuts and pistachios might be harmful.

Type A

Food summary: Often referred to as the FIRST VEGETARIAN this blood type does not do well on a Western diet of meat and potato. In fact, the "All American Diet" can damage Type A's immune system. . Impaired digestive efficiency is a large problem for the Blood Type A ! Their somewhat low level of stomach acid produces delay in digestion of meat which in turn, is stored as fat. Wheat, so common in this culture, is tolerated in moderate amounts but can be a problem if over eaten. Dairy foods can inhibit nutrient metabolism. Kidney beans can interfere with digestive enzymes and slow the metabolic rate.

Type B

Foods summary: Type B's do well on seafood particularly deep-sea fish such as cod and salmon. Green vegetables, lean meats and liver, eggs and low fat dairy products all stimulate the B's metabolism. Due to digestive inefficiency Type B's tend to gain weight on corn, buckwheat, lentils, peanuts and sesame seeds. The side effects of fatigue, fluid retention and hypoglycemia make it mandatory these foods be avoided. Licorice tea is a good beneficial tonic.

Type AB

Foods summary: AB's can eat food from BOTH the A and the B foodlists. Tofu, seafood, dairy products, kelp, green vegetables and pineapple are wonderful foods for AB's. Red meat, kidney beans, lima beans, corn, buckwheat and wheat are to be avoided. These foods create inefficient digestion, weight gain and mental symptoms such as confusion.

Blood Type diets are relatively new concepts in the field of nutrition. Each patient is unique; therefore, each diet is unique. Learning what works and what doesn't requires careful investigation of what food you eat, where you eat it, and when! These three parameters will affect your digestion; your digestion will affect your physiology; your physiology will determine your mental state.

How do we know if a food works? How do we know if it doesn't work? It's quite simple. Observe your body's reaction. Survey your physical, mental, and emotional states both before and after you eat. If your stomach bloats or becomes painful after eating, if your mood changes, or if your joints ache the day after, it could be an indication that you cannot tolerate that food. (Or maybe you over ate!) Don't eat that food again for three days. If you feel better without eating it, then STOP EATING IT.

In general the Blood Type diet will allow you to start your investigation of your own genetic and biochemical uniqueness. Find out what works. Nothing is absolute. Try it. Eat it. Enjoy it. If it doesn't work, avoid it.

Eating can be a happy time, a celebration shared with friends and family. It should not be a burden. By now you should realize that most people do not tolerate wheat or dairy products. Almost all people do well on fresh vegetables, seafood and rice. With this in mind, you can usually find wonderfully healthy selections when eating out. Looking for high-quality substitutions can be a creative endeavor and will have a dynamic effect on your life.

Two of my close family members have heart disease. The disease is related to decades of dietary misunderstanding and abuse. Now in the final years of life, they undergo a never-ending process of testing, intervention, and medication. If they had abided by the principles given in this article, perhaps it might have forestalled, prevented, or maybe even reversed the disease.

Try the diets. Test them out. There is nothing to lose, and so much to gain.

Good luck and chew your vegetables.