Why are some people plagued by poor health while others seem to live healthy, vital lives even late in life? Does blood type influence personality? A single drop of blood contains a biochemical make up as unique as your fingerprint. Your blood type is a key to unlocking the secrets to your biochemical individuality. Foods and supplements contain lectins that interact with your cells depending on your blood type. This explains why some nutrients which are beneficial to one blood type, may be harmful to the cells of another. Dr. Peter D’Adamo, the author of the best selling books Eat Right for Your Type and Live Right for Your Type gives Type O’s some tips on leading a healthy lifestyle.
The Type O Profile
Type O was the first blood type, the type O ancestral prototype was a canny, aggressive predator. Aspects of the Type O profile remain essential in every society even to this day – leadership, extroversion, energy and focus are among their best traits. Type O’s can be powerful and productive, however, when stressed Type O’s response can be one of anger, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. When Type O wiring gets crossed, as a result of a poor diet, lack of exercise, unhealthy behaviors or elevated stress levels, Type O’s are more vulnerable to negative metabolic effects, including insulin resistance, sluggish thyroid activity, and weight gain. When you customize your life to Type O’s strengths you can reap the benefits of your ancestry. Your genetic inheritance offers you the opportunity to be strong, lean, productive, long-lived and optimistic.
What Makes You Unique
As a Blood Type O you may be predisposed to certain illnesses, such as ulcers and thyroid disorders. In the 1950’s it was discovered that Type O’s had about twice the instances of ulcers of all kinds than the other blood types. These findings have been replicated many times since then. Type O’s tend to have low levels of thyroid hormone and often exhibit insufficient levels of iodine, a chemical element whose sole purpose is thyroid hormone regulation. This causes many side effects such as weight gain, fluid retention and fatigue. Dr. D’Adamo does not recommend iodine supplements, rather a diet rich in saltwater fish and kelp to help regulate the thyroid gland. Bladder Wrack is also an excellent nutrient for type O’s. This herb, actually a seaweed, is very effective as an aid to weight control for Type O’s. “The fucose in bladder wrack seems to help normalize the sluggish metabolic rate and produce weight loss in Type O’s,” says Dr. D’Adamo.
If you are not Type O, you have other powerful weight loss keys. Look for an update all about you in parts 2-4 of this series! Up Next – Type A.
Type O’s also have a higher level of stomach acid than the other blood types, which often results in stomach irritation and ulcers. Dr. D’Adamo recommends a licorice preparation called DGL (de glycyrrhizinated licorice) which can reduce discomfort and aid healing. DGL protects the stomach lining in addition to protecting it from stomach acids. Avoid crude licorice preparations as they contain a component of the plant which can cause elevated blood pressure. This component has been removed in DGL. Dr. D’Adamo also recommends Mastic Gum and Bismuth to soothe Type O’s common and even frequent tummy troubles.
Type O Personality?
In Japan, blood type has long been associated with personality type. You might well be asked your blood type on a job interview! In an independent study of 45 MBA students, Type O’s most often described themselves in ways related to the following characteristics; responsible, decisive, organized, objective, rule-conscious, and practical. Both male and female Type O’s reported a higher percentage of the mesomorphic body type when compared to controls. Interestingly, Type O’s also scored significantly higher than the rest in “sensing” – using the 5 senses to gather information, and in the sensing-thinking combination, indicating that they are more detail and fact oriented, logical, precise and orderly. “I believe that the tendency to sense and get facts right stems from the inbred hunter-gatherer need to observe and accurately assess the environment in order to insure survival.” Says D’Adamo.
Mangage Your Type O Stress
The legacy of your Type O ancestry causes an immediate “fight or flight” response in people of this blood type. However, this finely tuned response to stress, so vital in early Type O’s, is not always so beneficial in modern times. The Type O response can cause bouts of excessive anger, temper tantrums, hyperactivity and even create a severe enough chemical imbalance to bring about a manic episode. Since there is a powerful, synergistic relationship between the release of dopamine and feelings of reward, Type O is more vulnerable to destructive behaviors when overly tired, depressed or bored. These can include gambling, sensation seeking, risk taking, substance abuse and impulsivity. To avoid becoming overstressed, Dr. D’Adamo recommends following the Type O diet, which focuses on lean, organic meats, vegetables and fruits and avoid wheat and dairy which can be triggers for digestive and health issues in Type O. Additionally, he suggests that Type O’s avoid caffeine and alcohol. Caffeine can be particularly harmful because of its tendency to raise adrenaline and noradrenaline, which are already high for Type O’s.
Energize – The Essential Exercise Component
Type O’s benefit tremendously from brisk regular exercise that taxes the cardiovascular and muscular skeletal system. But the benefit derived surpasses the goal of physical fitness. Type O also derives the benefit of a well timed chemical release system. The act of physical exercise releases a swarm of neurotransmitter activity that acts as a tonic for the entire system. The Type O who exercises regularly also has a better emotional response. You are more emotionally balanced as a result of well regulated, efficient chemical transport system. More than any other blood type, O’s rely on physical exercise to maintain physical health and emotional balance. Dr. D’Adamo suggests that Type O’s engage in regular physical activity three to four times per week. For best results, engage in aerobic activity for thirty to forty five minutes at least four times per week. If you are easily bored, choose two or three different exercises and vary your routine.
In addition to exercising and eating foods that are Right For Your Type, here are a few key lifestyle strategies for Type O individuals:
- Develop clear plans for goals and tasks – annual, monthly, weekly, daily to avoid impulsivity.
- Make lifestyle changes gradually, rather than trying to tackle everything at once.
- Eat all meals, even snacks, seated at a table.
- Chew slowly and put your fork down between bites of food.
- Avoid making big decisions or spending money when stressed.
- Do something physical when you feel anxious.
- Engage in thirty to forty five minutes of aerobic exercise at least four times per week.
- When you crave a pleasure releasing-substance (alcohol, tobacco, sugar), do something physical.
Dr. D’Adamo recommends that Type O, “Approach this program as a long term strategy. This is not a short term goal, rather a lifestyle that you adapt for a lifetime of health and well being. There is no doubt that there is a connection between the mind and the body. The knowledge that we can do something to change our genetic destiny is powerful.”
Supplement Solutions for Common Type O Challenges
- Fight or Flight! Enhance natural recovery from occasional stress with Catechol
- Sluggish Thyroid Activity: Support natural thyroid function with Fucus Plus.
- Excess Acid: Healthy stomach acidity with Gastro-D Complex (now with DGL)