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Doing What is Necessary

Friday, June 24, 2011

If you're eating the things your body loves, your body will let you know.

For those of us who are overweight and obese, we are in a state of imbalance. We have done something that caused our normal metabolic mechanisms to short circuit. Basically, our body programming can't handle it and correct it.

If we don't correct it, our bodies will pay the price. Being overweight, insulin resistant or having type 2 diabetes is a warning sign. Take it as the big flashing red light on a nuclear reactor. If we don't do something about it, then our systems will overload, and we will suffer organ damage. Usually kidney damage.

We have to get the weight down. If the weight isn't coming down, then that means our bodies are still not getting what it needs.

I became overweight/obese because I wasn't paying attention to what I put in my body. I ate poorly. I did not feed it proper nutrition. I overloaded on sugary foods and nutrient poor high carbohydrates.

In order to get out of it, I had to back out the way I came in. Eliminate sugar, in all forms. Including the whole grains. This was my choice, and I'm not saying that everyone should do this. You'll have to find the right thing for you, but I am just trying to stress that if you are not losing weight, you have to change something about what you eat.

Believe me. I know the feeling of "I don't think I can give up XXX!" We are all different. Maybe some people can do moderation. Me, I determine what is most important to me, and I am willing to make sacrifices.

When I was badly in debt, I chose to live with a roommate to cut down on rent. I chose not to buy an iPhone with an expensive data plan, drove my old car rather than get a new one, didn't go on vacations, and made do on a used TV instead of state of the art plasma or LCD. I chose to sacrifice conveniences that I really didn't need, in order to get what I wanted. I got out of debt, and I have been debt free since 2007.

In the same way I am getting out of obesity. I used to have a pretty serious Snickers addiction. I used to buy the 'fun size' bags at the grocery store and go through them in a week. There is no reason on earth why I should have that much candy.

One day I went through the grocery isle, put it in my cart. I looked at it in my cart, and realized it wasn't good for me. I took it out of my cart and walked away. Then I rationalized maybe I could just cut it down slowly. So I put it back in my cart. Walked around the store. And I thought, no. I do not need this. I tossed it out of my cart and hurried out of the store before I changed my mind again.

So I went through sugar withdrawals. Sometimes I'd be watching TV, and I'd really, really want a snickers bar. Sometimes I suffer through with willpower. Sometimes I would get up from the couch and walk to the convenience store to get one. I went through this routine I don't know how long. Then after a few weeks, my cravings just stopped. I just didn't want it anymore. I haven't had a Snickers bar since 2006.

I really just do not want it. It represents to me all the things I hated about myself when I was obese. Tired, unhealthy and unattractive. The prejudice in the way people treated me. There's no Snickers bar that is worth all that, to me.

I lost 30lbs. Giving up Snickers as well as eating better quality food, like salmon instead of quarter pounder. It still was not enough. I was still technically overweight. Only now instead of being obese and unhealthy, I was overweight and very fit. I ate zero junk, zero processed foods, zero soda, and was very active with kayaking, biking, hiking, and swimming. I still could not lose less than 30lbs.

So as you know, I have recently discovered that starchy carbohydrates was the problem. The normal dietary advice is to eat whole grains as a part of our healthy diet.

I have voluntarily given up pasta, potatoes, rice, and bread. My body cannot handle it right now. I'm still repairing the damage that I did 10 years ago. There was nothing I enjoyed more than a baked potato with my chicken and steak. I'm half asian, and I love rice with my Korean bbq. I love spaghetti with marinara.

How do I know that was the problem? Because my body is responding. My fat stores are dropping off, muscle is building almost effortlessly, energy levels are stable, skin and hair looks great, and no hunger.

I was discussing this with a spark friend yesterday. My hunger cues have completely changed. I used to get this uncontrollable hunger, obsessing about food. Is it lunch time yet? Maybe I should have an early lunch. Is it snack time yet? Maybe I should wait a couple more hours, but I'm so hungry.

I'd watch the clock, just waiting for the "ok" to eat.

Now, my hunger is more like running low on energy. Like a toy with it's battery running low, it starts to slow down. I go find a snack, maybe eat whole fat cottage cheese with diced apples. I feel recharged, like I just got a new battery put in. I get back to work, alert, but not hyper.

I'm not saying this is what will happen for you. Your results will vary. For me, this is a much better way to live. I am hoping that I can repair the damage so I can eat pasta, rice, and potatoes in moderation, but if I can't, then I can manage. I will do what is necessary. If my body is thriving, then I will listen to what it says. But if I start to crave like a lunatic, gain weight, lose hair, have skin problems, or lose muscle tone, then I will also pay attention that my body is saying it does not like how I'm treating it.

I actually intended this to be a blog about supplements, but it seemed to have taken a different direction as I was writing it. I'll write the supplement blog sometime next week.

Happy friday, and have a great weekend!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VHALKYRIE 6/27/2011 2:43PM

    PRECIOUSJENI: Thank you!

PRANA_DANCER: I was wondering if others were having a similar experience. I totally know what you mean. I feel like I can do my activities for longer. Probably because I'm tapping into my fat fuel, of which I have plenty of booster fuel for the moment! Thanks for sharing!

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PRANA_DANCER 6/27/2011 10:18AM

    "I feel recharged, like I just got a new battery put in. I get back to work, alert, but not hyper. "

I've been feeling that two, even though I've only been doing this for a couple of weeks now. Between giving up caffeine and making different food choices I feel like I have energy. Not a jittery, shaky energy, just a healthy alertness with a big dose of stamina.

Last Friday I went to a going away party with my friends. I bowled and danced for four hours. I wasn't tired. Even one month ago, my bum would have been firmly plastered to the bench between frames.

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PRECIOUSJENI 6/27/2011 1:47AM

    I think we were separated at birth. lol You're totally in my head in so many of your posts. You have a great attitude!

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VHALKYRIE 6/26/2011 11:57PM

    PZF144: I'm noticing stuff like that happen to me more often, and I am still surprised and in awe. I never knew that *I* could be the one with seemingly superpower skills of restraint!

Congrats on your evolution! Viva la revolution! emoticon

BREWMASTERBILL: I agree there are parallels between debt accumulation and fat accumulation. Both are results of excess. I think the key to me for both was adjusting the quality, not quantity. For financial solvency, I don't really need so many things, and live fairly minimalist. For weight solvency, I find that whole grains are an optional food group, and eating better quality fat/protein and vegetables leads to better satiety.

Weirdo, yes! I embrace it. ;)

Comment edited on: 6/27/2011 12:01:26 AM

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    Like you, I think I started managing money long before the weight loss thing. It's amazing to me how many skills and lessons are directly transferable. Think about the similarities. Losing weight and being debt free is simple. Very simple. Eat less, move more. Spend less, make more. The devil is in the details. Money budget, calorie budget. Extra burn (exercise), extra income (more work). Once I drew this relationship, I knew what I had to do. The hard part for most is staying focused on the plan. Staying "motivated" if you will. I see the word "addiction" being thrown around too loosely. I'm addicted to sugar, I'm addicted to my iPhone. Giving up the iPhone for you or dealing with a roommate day after day (which would be hell on earth for me) is the painful sacrifices that it takes to change your life. Forgoing Snickers and getting your ass off the couch is another real reminder on the health side. It's always going to be somewhat of a challenge to pass up the junk food or the shopping trip.

I think Dave Ramsey says frequently that a child cannot delay gratification. I think about this when I'm trading short term pleasure that jeopardizes my long term goals. If I'm doing that on a consistent basis, my goals suck or I need to grow up.

Great blog, great story. Thanks for sharing! Congratulations on both being debt free and being able to manage your health. I think Dave Ramsey would agree that you are firmly in the 'weird' category. Weirdo.

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PZF144 6/25/2011 12:44AM

    The most amazing thing happened to me today. I was going to meet my family at Cheesecake Factory for lunch. But prior to that, I needed to go to Dylan's Candy Bar (a gigantic candy store) to get a gift for my niece. I walked through the store, got exactly what I wanted for her, paid for it, and left. As I was walking in the mall toward the Cheesecake Factory, it dawned on me that I hadn't dwelled on all the candy bins full of stuff I wanted. Because I just didn't want it. So on to the Cheesecake Factory: Cobb Salad. Sent the bread basket down the table, without a second thought. Watched all the servings of cheesecake walk by and didn't give them a second thought either.

This, from the biggest sugar-holic on the planet. Who knew???

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VHALKYRIE 6/24/2011 2:41PM

    SHIRLANGEL: emoticon I'm glad I could help. Thank you!

GOFORIT50: That is something that is so hard for me to explain. I do not feel deprived. Now that I am feeding my body the nutrients it needs, I do not have cravings for anything. Well, I take that back. I have had a craving for a hamburger for weeks! Today I had lunch and I ordered a burger. I forgot to tell them I didn't want the french fries. I looked at the fries, and I didn't think, "I wish I could eat them, but I'm on a diet so I can't". It wasn't a contest of willpower - I just plain didn't want to eat them. I finished my burger, pushed the plate away, with the fries uneaten. I never understood how people could do that before, but now I do. When my body is working in balance, in nutrients and hormones, there are no cravings. I ate what I needed to, then I was done. It is something I never thought possible.

Yes, mileage varies. For me, some foods like Snickers has such a negative feedback loop for me, I don't even consider it.

PURPLECRACK: Yes, Dave Ramsey fan here! Although I started my debt free journey before I discovered him. It was great affirmation to hear that I was on the right track, and that was great motivation. You are going to love being debt free - it is such a stress reliever. Like, the last check I wrote, I could immediately feel the weight of the world off my shoulders. Getting a similar feeling now that I am finally getting closer to my fitness goals!

EVOLVEFISH: If you are eating a big bowl of veggies and fruit with every meal, I wouldn't worry about what the tracker for carb says. The only way someone can get 200g carbohydrates is with grains. You would need to eat 160oz of broccoli to get 200g carbs! My suggestion is, don't worry about it - you are getting way more nutrients with the salad than a piece of toast!

4A-HEALTHY-BMI: I stray for extenuating circumstances, too. But now I know exactly what the kinds of foods my body wants, I can stay much closer to what I need to do, even when on dining out or on vacation. I'm still surprised at how I've adjusted to it.

So sorry to hear about your illnesses. Glad you are feeling better, and hope you get back to full speed soon!

ANDREA409: The only sweets I miss are the ones that grandma made. You know, the chocolate chip cookie made with real butter? They were rich and satisfying in a way that the modern sugar loaded fat-free cookies never were. I could eat one of grannie's cookies with a glass of milk and be happy with just one cookie. (Was it the fat in the milk that kept me satisfied, despite the sugar in the cookie? Hmmm) Fat free cookies were all sugar and no satisfaction. Had to keep eating in order to make up for what was missing - the fat.

I can't believe how much I've changed, either. Yay us!

::high five::

Comment edited on: 6/24/2011 3:02:12 PM

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ANDREA409 6/24/2011 12:56PM

    I can empathize with so much of this blog. Ohhhhhh, the wretched addiction. I was talking about it with my bf this morning, after our discussion, because it really brought back the memories of just how much I used to eat. Reflecting now, I can't believe it. I just can't believe how many sweets I used to consume. And now, quite honestly, the idea of eating a cookie or candy bar is extremely unappealing. I think I've experienced what LK talks about in her book: once the body starts getting what it needs, the sugar cravings stop. THAT'S why I couldn't break the addiction. I thought I was so weak and could not figure it out.

Now I'm happy with a plate of steak, half a sweet potato, and some veggies cooked in coconut oil. It stuns me how far I've come. Thinking about that stuff yesterday really opened a floodgate of emotions for me.

Very well said, Friend.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/24/2011 12:44PM

    As you mentioned, I've experienced what I need to do as a moving target.

At various stages I've needed more or fewer calories, and various macronutrient ratios. The kind and frequency of exercise necessary has changed, too.

And that's just over time, losing half of myself (the 100% fat half. My Evil Lard Twin, as it were. LOL)

Add in there illness and injury and wow it has become pretty complicated!

For example, I was sick with a nasty flu all last week on top of recovering from rotator cuff surgery. I didn't get to PT, or strength training, or spin class at all. My exercise consisted of coughing, sneezing, and blowing my nose. I spent so much time in bed my body was getting stiff from it. I lost weight and gained fat (i.e. I lost mostly muscle).

This week I've recovered and managed strength training 3x, PT twice, and spinning twice. And that TOM is approaching. So yesterday I was HONGRY, with a capital H. I ate 2300 calories, which is 800 more than my usual target. 250g of that was protein. I've gained about a pound this week according to physics diet. But my muscle has increased, and fat has gone down.

So, yeah. It's complicated. I doubt I'll ever be able to do that "intuitive eating" thing because I've screwed up my system so badly. But I'm glad I've figured out what mostly works for me (eating- and exercise- wise) and that straying from it now and then for experimental or extenuating circumstances is OK, and even sometimes helpful.

BTW, I love that image of you dithering in the store with that bag of fun-size Snickers. I've so been there, and am even there sometimes still, although lately it's dithering over a pineapple or a melon or something. LOL

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EVOLVEFISH 6/24/2011 12:30PM

    Thought-provoking blog. I agree about the breads, pastas, rice, and potatoes. I have a hard time with them. I try to get carbs from other places and almost always come up short for the day because of it!

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PURPLECRACK 6/24/2011 11:21AM

    Your blogs always make me think. I love the debt free analogy. We are almost debt free. (Dave Ramsey fan?) My husband is cold turkey, I'm moderation. That works for us. Follow your body. It knows. Listen to it. My body doesn't do well with carbs. I know this. I need to listen. Thanks for the encouragement!

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RESOLVEDTOWIN 6/24/2011 10:57AM

    I guess I am in the other camp. I have done okay with completely eliminating certain foods...but only for a few months. Then I want them so badly that I end up compromising my diet plan to get them,gain weight, and give up on fitness once again.

This time I am employing a different strategy. I love chips and chocolate (I know...how did I ever gain weight eating stuff like that???) This time I allow myself a certain small number of chips and one of the Ferrer Rocher chocolates each day. Sometimes I get busy and forget. But the bottom line is that I haven't felt deprived this go 'round and have lost over 40 pounds so far.

This is the point where I normally would get bored and quit, but I feel fine and after a short break due to being out of town, I feel fine to continue toward getting the rest of this off.

It fascinates me how each body and brain work differently. I definitely see the wisdom of going cold turkey, but for some reason it didn't bring me the long term results I need. What is the pat phrase these days, your mileage might vary! :)

Comment edited on: 6/24/2011 10:59:10 AM

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SHIRLANGEL 6/24/2011 10:42AM

    Aha - you didn't know it but you wrote this blog to help me today (ha, ha). I really needed some good instruction and encouragement and your blog helped A LOT. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/24/2011 10:43:47 AM

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Why, Dr. Oz, Why?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

How many of you watch Dr. Oz? I would guess most of us. He's a cardiologist, he's entertaining, Oprah made him a star, oh, and he's cute!


I'm just going to say that he pulled some shennanigans on this week's interview with Gary Taubes.

You've been hearing me talk a lot about Gary Taubes lately. He's a NYT journalist who wrote "Good Calories, Bad Calories", and more recently "Why We Get Fat (And What to Do About it)". They are exposes about how modern medicine has got it wrong that saturated fats are harmful, and carbohydrates are beneficial. This is all based on real scientific studies, most of which have been buried.

Dr. Oz interviewed Taubes earlier this week. If you haven't already seen it, here is the link:


Unfortunately, Dr. Oz portrayed every bad stereotype about low-carb with his segment on his diet vs Gary.

First, I would say there is nothing wrong with Dr. Oz's daily food. I saw very little grains or starches. The only non vegetable carb I saw was the brown rice with his dinner. Whether Dr. Oz realizes it or not, he is already eating low carb. Some low carbers would disagree and say he ate too much fruit and dairy, but I think it depends. Some can tolerate fruit and dairy better than others. We have to experiment and find what works for us. This is going to vary from person to person.

Breakfast: He shows his healthy yogurt and blueberry breakfast, with some green drink as his normal breakfast. Then he showed a huge plate of eggs and sausage. Either breakfast is fine, but his portion of eggs and sausage is too big. I love yogurt and blueberries for breakfast. I have eaten this for years. I used to add 1/2 cup cereal, but no longer. Yesterday I had whole milk cottage cheese and half a diced apple. This morning I had a 3oz leftover steak from dinner, one egg, and a quarter of a sliced apple. My advice to Dr. Oz is he had too many eggs and sausage. If he cut the portion size in half, it would be fine. I think he ate too much. But I'd also say, his normal breakfast was OK, too!

Morning Snack: Pork rinds? For a snack? Really? No! His walnuts and orange snack would be just fine on low carb! The snack I ate yesterday while watching this was plain homemade yogurt sweetened with stevia, 5 rainier cherries, and half a handful of cashews. Dr. Oz would approve of my low carb snack. If Dr. Oz was on a forum asking for low carb help, I would tell him to ditch the pork rinds.

Lunch: Perfect. Greens and chicken salad.

Dinner: Dr. Oz shows a very fabulous piece of salmon, green beans, and brown rice. That was just fine, Dr. Oz! I encourage people to eat this! He had almost no grain throughout the day, so if he wanted some brown rice for dinner, that's perfectly fine. I would have cut the portion of brown rice down to 1/4-1/2 cup though. It looked like he had about 2 cups of brown rice. That would be way too much for me. He replaces it with the massive piece of steak, which I estimate to be an 18oz bone in ribeye. Terrible. Portion sizes still matter. 3-6oz of steak is plenty. But again, there was NOTHING wrong with his original salmon dinner on low carb!

So I am a little perturbed by this. Now that you've seen the show, please listen to Dr. Oz's radio show where he interviews Gary.


Did you notice the complete difference in tone?

No one was more surprised than Gary. He said before he went on the show, he was warned by the producers that TV is different, and it is entertainment.


If you were skeptical because Gary seemed hesitant about Dr. Oz's insistence about getting his lipids checked, he did get them checked. He posted the results on his blog.


Any one of us would love to have Gary's blood lipids. If your report looked like this, your doctor would be over the moon. He really does eat bacon and eggs every morning, cheeseburgers (no bun), and ribeye steaks.

Triglycerides: 64 (Less than 150 is healthy. This is excellent.)
LDL: 116 (Less than 130 is healthy. Dr. Oz would say this is a little high, but his LDL is predominantly the large pattern A, which is the good LDL. This is very good.)
HDL (Total): 80 (Greater than 50 (I think) is healthy. 80 is considered excellent)

This is the NYT article that launched Gary Taubes as a firebrand. If you have time, I would read it. It will give you a much better picture of what he is talking about.


The books "Good Calories, Bad Calories" and "Why We Get Fat" are both based on this article. I would suggest "Why We Get Fat" for the general population, and GCBC for those who have a head for research journals.

I disagree with Gary slightly on the importance of exercise, but we will talk about that another time.

I can understand Dr. Oz's concern and skepticism, but I don't think he made a very fair portrayal. This was sensational, entertainment TV. I think he is right about Gary kicking the tires of the medical community. They need to recognize that some of us do have an insulin problem, even if we aren't clinically "insulin resistant" or diabetic. I agree with Gary that we have to use the right tool for the job. Dr. Oz clearly has never been seriously overweight. He's never damaged his body with sugar abuse. He can eat the standard recommended diet and thrive. Some of us have damaged our bodies. Maybe low carb isn't the right solution for everyone, but for some of us, it really may be the solution. Continuing to portray the stereotype is deterring people from considering something that might help them.

I'll leave you with this as food for thought (pun intended!).

Breakfast: Whole Egg Cheese and Onion Omelet, Avocado and Tomato.

Lunch: Smoked Salmon and Avocado Salad

Snack: Strawberries and Creme Fraiche

Dinner: 4oz Grilled Buffalo Ribeye, Heirloom Tomato Salad, and Steamed Bok Choy

What do you think of my low carb choices versus Dr. Oz? Do you think Dr. Oz would be concerned with my meals? Do you think he would approve of my food choices, if he didn't know I was a low carber?

What is the only thing missing from the things he recommends as a healthy diet? Whole grains and starches. Would he notice they were missing from my plate?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUSTBIRDY 6/24/2011 12:08AM

    pretty funny, here we are, outing people for eating healthy on the sly

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JUSTBIRDY 6/24/2011 12:06AM

    scroll down to Dr. Roizen's soda blogposts to see what he eats.

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JUSTBIRDY 6/23/2011 11:58PM

    I know the sharky term and it really began when he gave a member of the audience the same kind of compression underwear he wears. TMI!

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DIANE7786 6/23/2011 11:50PM

    I like Dr Oz but I don't agree with all that he suggests. The entire medical community can't agree on most things. There is a lot about the show to like. We are our best health advocates so I ignore the parts of the show that don't make sense to me.

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BEARCLAW6 6/23/2011 5:46PM

    I am laughing. So Dr. Oz treated low-carb eating like that and he eats low-carb! Does the phrase 'Jumped the shark' mean anything to you youngsters?

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JUSTBIRDY 6/23/2011 4:26PM

    egrammy wrote to Dr. Oz, too. She's the Dr. Oz team leader.

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 2:01PM

    Believe it or not, 100g is considered low carb by the dietary standards. Most people think of low carb as 20g, but that is considered very low carb, and atkins only does it for a short time. I do about 60g on average, 95% fruit and veg. Very little grains or starches. I make the carbs count, also. I found what works for me, too. Great that you found what works for you!

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PURPLESPEDCOW 6/23/2011 1:40PM

    I am diabetic and watch carb intake. try to make those carbs count but I don't think I am a low carber as I generally eat around 100 carbs per day. I have found a number that works for me and my body.

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JUSTBIRDY 6/23/2011 11:47AM

    I used to be a HUGE fan of Dr. Oz, but have had great difficulty even having him on TV in the background after I saw this show when it first aired in March. Such cheap shots. I did have a post about it on my other blog (which unfortunately, I cannot share with you here). Jimmy Moore has some youtube stuff on this, also including Dr. Oz's radio interview with Gary Taubes, where he agrees with Gary for a different audience. Dr. Oz, actually does follow a lower carb diet, as does Dr. Roizen (Dr. Roizen's food diary was posted on his blog when he took the dump soda challenge and it doesn't look like he eats many carbs except rice for dinner, and some fruit.)
Dr. Oz had a great opportunity to set the record straight, but he didn't. But then again, many of us know what perils may befall the people who speak in favor of such a "dangerous" fad diet.

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 11:21AM

    I've decided to write Dr. Oz. I'll let you know if he writes back!

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 11:23:15 AM

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 11:20AM

    KELPIE57: I agree. I hope that Dr. Oz is sincere in that Gary's book is making him rethink a few things. Especially regarding "one size fits all" dieting that pervades the advice of doctors like himself.

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KELPIE57 6/23/2011 11:12AM

    I think that the most important thing is recognising that one size does not fit all.

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 11:00AM

    Also, I may have to roll up my sleeves and go to war. I did a search for "healthy low carb", and all I could find were sites that promoted the Atkins bars. I guess if you wanted a candy bar replacement treat, but I would not use it as a meal replacement on a regular basis.

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 11:12:30 AM

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 10:56AM

    Hah! The creme fraiche is the only thing in those pictures that I didn't make myself! The one in the picture is creme fraiche I bought from the store. To make it at home, it has to be cultured like yogurt, which I have had trouble with because I can only get ultra pasteurized cream, and it doesn't seem to work right. This past weekend I was able to get regular pasteurized cream, but now I don't have any buttermilk. I was going to experiment with something I found called "Swedish Creme" which is a mix of heavy cream and yogurt. That seems easier to make, so hopefully it works out. If it works, I will share!

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 10:57:30 AM

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ANDREA409 6/23/2011 10:51AM

    There is nothing good to say about Pork Rinds. Nothing.

Remember in FatHead, at the end when he weighs in and gets his blood work results back? The doctor says, "I don't like what you're proving here."

He doesn't want people living on fast food, thinking it's okay. Oz feels the same way. I think a MAJOR problem in this country is lack of information about the vitamins and minerals that are absolutely essential for cellular function. Pork rinds and fast food ain't gonna give you any of those!

Maybe if the dairy and corn industries would stop pushing so hard, it would free up a little space for other voices to be heard.

"Follow the money." emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 11:06:57 AM

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/23/2011 10:49AM

    Anytime you want to come to Upstate NY and cook for me, you are more than welcome! LOL


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ANDREA409 6/23/2011 10:46AM

    Would you mind sharing your recipe for the Creme Fraiche? This past weekend, my bf and I modified this recipe http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/reci
to have more fat and little sugar. It was really tasty, but yours looks even more delicious!

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 10:35AM

    ANDREA409: I think he sensationalized for TV. If you listen to the radio show interview, his attitude is completely different. He seems engaged and interested. On the TV show, he was Mr. Attack.

I think Dr. Oz does have a fear that if he tells his viewer to cut back on carbs, they will eat exactly the way he tried to portray it - horribly. Pork rinds. Oversized steaks and sausages.

The way I eat is, I hope, a better example. I'm tempted to write to him and send him pictures of my food, and see if he responds.

PRANA_DANCER: Yep, easy! 1 heirloom tomato, diced. Parsley, chopped green onion, 1 tsp lemon or lime juice, salt and pepper to taste. That's it! You could add cilantro instead of parsley, if you want.

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 10:38:33 AM

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PRANA_DANCER 6/23/2011 10:28AM

    Aww, man. I'm hungry now. I'm to go peruse the recipes on MDA. Thanks for introducing me to that site! Do you have the recipe for that tomato salad? It looks fantastic!

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ANDREA409 6/23/2011 10:26AM

    Your meals look stunning. Seriously.

I can't imagine Oz would take any issue whatsoever with what you're eating. Do you think he sensationalized, because he was defensive or because it makes for good tv? He seems like a really stand-up guy. I used to watch him daily several months ago, because I remember being shocked that someone on tv (and in the medical community, nonetheless!) was saying REAL things, not promulgating crap.

Maybe that's his fear here. If he doesn't attack low-carb, he's afraid people will be misinformed. Remember the Atkins craze? I personally have no problem with Atkins, if that works for people, but when it first came out, everyone (myself included) mistakingly thought it meant consuming huge portions of steak, bacon, cheese, etc, with no mention of veggies or even fruits. After taking the time to read up on it, however, I have changed my mind. The problem is most people aren't going to take the time to do their own research. I think Oz is trying to get his messages across to the masses, to the people where obesity and disease are far-reaching.

I think it's the main reason most doctors don't recommend dietary changes and just push drugs: patient non-compliance. Most of the time, the patient isn't going to change his or her dietary habits, but once in awhile they do. Guess Oz wants to reach as many people as he can.

And, yes, absolutely portion size is critical.

To Don: That's fantastic! Congrats on your weight loss and maintenance.

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 11:10:01 AM

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JECKIE 6/23/2011 10:06AM

    TV is mostly sensationalism these days (and I'll admit other than a couple glances sans sound at the gym I've never watched Dr. Oz). The real info is in research, which sadly too many people are too lazy to actually do.

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VHALKYRIE 6/23/2011 9:59AM

    GRACIOUSGRAPE: Gary Taubes is a science journalist. He has degrees in applied physics, aerospace, and journalism. He's written for NYT, Discover magazine, and Science magazine. He shifted his focus towards medicine and nutrition in 2002 with the NYT article I linked above. He became interested in how low-fat diets became the nutritional standard, and discovered a lot of problems with the science. His books cover the research in very heavy detail.

DDOORN: I didn't know you were on Dr. Oz, Don! I missed that episode! I want to see it! I agree...it is terrible that Dr. Oz didn't step back from the sideshow for a moment to give this an objective presentation. If you listen to the radio show, Dr. Oz sounds a lot more objective.

Comment edited on: 6/23/2011 10:17:44 AM

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DDOORN 6/23/2011 9:33AM

    I was on Dr. Oz's 100 show, featuring 100 folks who've lost 100 pounds or more and kept it off. There is no question about the sensational aspect of his show. One has to grab "eyeballs" so to speak, but what a shame he skewed things so on the Taubes show.


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GRACIOUSGRAPE 6/23/2011 9:27AM

    Fabulous-looking food. Want to come cook for me? I do like to have some grains in my diet so would incorporate that weekly, but, like you said, to each their own, whatever works for each of us. Thanks for a very informative blog again! I do not know Gary Taubes. Is he a Doctor or what is his professional background?

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Normal BMI!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

For the first time in 10 years, my BMI is in the normal range! I'm no longer overweight!

Ok, ok. I know BMI is a terrible standard. But still, this is huge!

As a much better yardstick, my bodyfat is below 30% for the first time in 10 years too! 29.3% as of this morning!

4/20/2011: 26.4 (overweight)
6/22/2011: 24.8 (NORMAL!) emoticon

4/30/2011: 38%
6/22/2011: 29.3% emoticon

I'm no longer a statistic! I've exited the obesity epidemic!


Also, this is the longest I've gone below 130lbs and stayed there. I went below 130lbs on 6/6/2011, and I've stayed below. In years past, I've dipped below 130 briefly, then rebounded quickly. I couldn't stay below that marker.

I haven't regained anything. My weight is so stable. No wild swings up or down. The initial fast lost did slow down, but my loss rate is still steady. Even when I supposedly overate my calories by +600. I've suddenly become one of those people that can eat anything and not gain weight!

Well. Not just anything. But you know my secret!


I'm so glad I finally found what worked for me!

emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PRANA_DANCER 6/23/2011 10:13AM

    That's awesome!

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KELPIE57 6/23/2011 4:26AM

    Well done you

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EVOLVEFISH 6/22/2011 10:28PM

    You're pretty inspiring. I feel even more hopeful after reading this. Thanks for the blog!

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VHALKYRIE 6/22/2011 10:02PM

    Thank you everyone!

emoticon emoticon

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KAKIPOPUP 6/22/2011 6:54PM

    What GREAT news! Way to Go! emoticon

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FITGIRL15 6/22/2011 4:43PM

    It always shocks me that someone who weighs 130lbs could be considered OBESE!

Congrats on your accomplishments!

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MYLADY4 6/22/2011 1:58PM


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NEURONERD 6/22/2011 1:33PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/22/2011 1:01PM


I got there briefly last week and promptly bounced out again - that TOM is coming and I'm having a hard time keeping the calories (and salt) reasonable at the moment.

I'll join you next week, 'K?


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ARCHIMEDESII 6/22/2011 12:50PM

    So, I told my NP that their scale was wrong. I do this every time I go in. eh-hem. Do you know what she said ? She said she doesn't get on that scale !!! Jeepers, if you know the scale is wrong, then why do you keep using that number as fact ????


today, my BMI is probably between 25-26, which is where it usually is. I don't get bent out of shape because my BMI is at the high end of normal because like I said, BMI doesn't take muscle into account.

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VHALKYRIE 6/22/2011 12:46PM

    ARCHIMEDESII: Yes, exactly! Plus it's adding an extra 5 pounds because of your clothes and shoes at the doc's office, right?

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ARCHIMEDESII 6/22/2011 12:42PM

    emoticon !! When I went for my physical a couple of weeks ago, my nurse practitioner calculated my BMI as 27 !

So, according to BMI, I AM overweight !! Here's the problem, I was up five pounds of water weight because of TOM. On top of that, my doctor's office scale has always been five pounds higher than my scale at home or the scale at the gym.

Anyway, my point... the nurse looks at my BMI. looks at me. looks at the BMI and says,"you're a skinny lady". So no, I'm not fat, but because of water retention and a lousy doctor's office scale, my BMI says I'm overweight !!

In short, BMI is not a good indicator of overall health because it doesn't take lean muscle into account.


PS - I'm down 7 pounds since I went to the doctor's. gotta love water fluctuations. sheesh.

Comment edited on: 6/22/2011 12:48:06 PM

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LUCYSUNFLOWER 6/22/2011 11:37AM

    Woohoo!! I am so happy for you!!

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JUSTBIRDY 6/22/2011 10:21AM

    That's great! Glad things are working out for you.

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BEANBYDESIGN 6/22/2011 9:49AM

    emoticon emoticon

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DDOORN 6/22/2011 9:47AM

    Things are just "clicking" for you and you're reaping those well-deserved rewards...woo hoo! :-)


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GOOSIEMOON 6/22/2011 9:41AM

    That's fantastic!

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IMNENA23 6/22/2011 9:22AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JECKIE 6/22/2011 9:21AM

    emoticon What a feeling that must be! Awesome!

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IMNENA23 6/22/2011 9:20AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANDREA409 6/22/2011 7:41AM

    Me too! That's great news. emoticon

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RIDLEYRIDER 6/22/2011 6:54AM

  Great job! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    That's fantastic! As you well know, this is an important milestone regardless of what you think of BMI. It sounds like you made a nice soft landing into normal territory as well. Perfect.

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BEARCLAW6 6/22/2011 6:47AM


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Blood Type Diet?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

This is one of the topics that I can't talk about on the general forums without getting quashed because it falls outside conventional wisdom.

This morning, for some reason, I woke up with an idea in my head. I don't even remember how all the pathways of my thought process came to this idea. Something my brain was chewing on while I slept, I suppose. I rolled out of bed, got on my computer and looked up blood types.

I've heard of the blood type diet before, but never really looked much into it. I was stuck on the 'official' dietary standards, and really only glossed over alternate theories.

The Blood Type Diet is based on the premise that our optimal diets is determined by our blood type. The reason is because our blood types emerged at different points in our near evolutionary past. Blood type O is the oldest - paleolithic. Type A emerged 20,000 years ago, so it is neolithic. Type B emerged 10,000 years ago. Type AB is the newest.

Type O is the most common. 44% of the US population is O+/O-. Type AB is the rarest. 5.51% of the US population.


I am O+. I am a universal positive donor. My blood can be used for any positive blood types for transfusions. This is 85% of the US population. O+ is kept in blood banks in high numbers for use in surgery and trauma when the exact blood type isn't available (which is most of the time). O- is universal donor - can be used with any blood type. O- is always carried on ambulances, where there isn't time to determine blood type for emergencies. My blood bank always calls me right on the dot when I can donate because it is so important for hospital care.

According to the Blood Type Diet, our blood type gives us an indication of what our ideal diet is.


* Blood group O is believed by D'Adamo to be the hunter, the earliest human blood group. The diet recommends that this blood group eat a higher protein diet. D'Adamo bases this on the belief that O blood type was the first blood type, originating 30,000 years ago.
* Blood group A is called the agrarian" or "cultivator by D'Adamo, who believes it to be a more recently evolved blood type, dating back from the dawn of agriculture, 20,000 years ago. The diet recommends that individuals of blood group A eat a diet emphasizing vegetables and free of red meat, a more vegetarian food intake.
* Blood group B is, according to D'Adamo, the nomad, associated with a strong immune system and a flexible digestive system. The blood type diet claims that people of blood type B are the only ones who can thrive on dairy products and estimates blood type B arrived 10,000 years ago.
* Blood group AB, according to D'Adamo, the enigma, the most recently evolved type, arriving less than 1,000 years ago. In terms of dietary needs, his blood type diet treats this group as an intermediate between blood types A and B.

If you read the wikipedia summary, it seems like the science is sketchy, and needs more clinical trials and research.

BUT. There is at least some circumstantial evidence.

Consider this. Blood Type A is most common among Europeans, especially Scandinavians. Type A's can supposedly tolerate grains better than the other types. Blood Type B originated in Mongolia, who were nomadic and lived off the blood, meat and milk of their animals. Type B's can tolerate more dairy, and they are the most versatile omnivores. Pretty important when you live on the Mongolian steppes and food isn't abundant. Being able to eat anything is a huge survival advantage.

Here are some of the high Type O ethnic groups:

US Indians 79%
Navajo 73%
Australian Aborigines 61%
Kenyans 60%
Mayas 98%
Peru Indians 100%
Sudanese 62%

These are all populations with a high protein diet. The Mayan and Peru Indian populations migrated to the Americas without introduction of the newer blood types, and thus, have more of the old paleo blood. However, there is an outlier. Eskimos, we know, consume very high protein diets. Alaska Eskimo Type O/A distribution is 38/44. Greenland Eskimo is 54/36. I was not able to find any blood type data on the Maasai.

This is not conclusive, and I don't want to be trapped into an Ansel Keys type faulty hypothesis. However, I find it interesting. I would love to see some actual clinical trials.

So Type O are the paleos? Animal proteins and vegetable. They do not thrive on grains, legumes, or dairy. Type A are the vegetarians? Type B are the true omnivores?

Also consider this piece of circumstantial evidence. If 44% of the American population is Type O, doesn't it sound awfully similar to the overweight and obesity rate in America? Perhaps the food pyramid guidelines will harm these people, but not the others?

I'm searching for more science, but this is just another idea that I am tossing around in my head. I do think there is more to our biology that makes our bodies able to tolerate different foods, and thus, no diet is a one size fits all.

What do you think? Are you a Type A that breaks this hypothesis? I'm hardly a conclusive test subject, but I do think the paleo diet works better for me, and I happen to be a Type O. I am not able to thrive on even a moderate grain diet.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHARJOPAUL 6/22/2011 12:10PM

    My first thoughts on this is that basing diet on a single factor (even if it is based in evolution) is to narrow a way to look at things. Where blood type may be a factor in the whole thing, there is probably a lot more to eating healthy than just one factor.

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VHALKYRIE 6/22/2011 10:32AM

    Yeah, that seems to be a lot of what the criticisms of the book are based on. I don't understand that either. If you're supposed to avoid wheat, then what grains are the agrarians supposed to eat? Thanks for checking it out. Keep us updated.

Also, I heard there is a revised copy of the book that covers subtypes. So if you are AO/BO, etc. Which one did you get?

Comment edited on: 6/22/2011 10:36:24 AM

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JUSTBIRDY 6/22/2011 10:28AM

    I picked up the book yesterday. So far, it looks short on data. Also, some of the conclusions don't make sense. I am A+, and it says that I am agrarian and adapted to that type of diet, but then says that I shouldn't eat wheat or milk. (Well I agree that at least I shouldn't eat the wheat!). It says I should be eating lots of soy, but I already know that too much soy really bothers me, and none of my supposedly agrarian ancestors were exposed to any type of soy. I do seem to need lots of veggies with my meat, though.
Also, I am not all agrarian. My mother's mother's mother's DNA is highland Scot, and so is my mitochondrial DNA. I don't think they were growing rows of anything there.

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VHALKYRIE 6/22/2011 8:41AM

    I wasn't following this diet, but the diet on settled on happened to be pretty similar. Eliminating grains was a godsend for me.

Very interesting about the evolution. I admit that I don't know much about it, this is an alternate thread path I haven't considered before. Until a couple of months ago, I didn't know how insulin worked! I think delving into blood work is too much for me. It is very complicated. I probably won't explore it too much farther. Maybe there is something there, but it is not my area of expertise.

Thanks for your comment!

Comment edited on: 6/22/2011 8:44:35 AM

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ALIE719 6/22/2011 8:34AM

    As a note, my Dad(B+) did this diet years ago. He gained weight. He only loses weight when he does a Paleo style diet(something he's been doing on and off for years now). My mom(O+), has no problem eating grains, though she doesn't drink cow's milk, as she's has a slight intolerance to it. She does, however, drink goat's milk and eat cheese.

Blood type is only one of many, many factors that make up our complicated systems. There's probably no harm in trying it. Keep counting calories, and phase different foods in and out. See what works for you.

I will say that his hand-waving theory of the evolution of blood types is misleading and probably incorrect. Some scientists believe that A was the first to develop, with O being a more recent mutation, and that they all developed 3-4 million years ago, rather than the much more recent past.

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VHALKYRIE 6/22/2011 8:08AM

    SPACEPRINCESS: I'm so sorry you got sick. There are certainly a lot of work that still needs to be done to find the right diets for people, especially if they have underlying conditions. The standard low-fat diet was making me sick, and it is doctor approved. I didn't do the blood type diet - I was just checking plausibility. Low-grain diet worked for me. My doctor would have approved if I asked, but she is awesome, and doesn't have the standard biases. There are many doctors who wouldn't.

KAKIPOPUP: Yeah, I'm thinking grains aren't good for many people, in general. And certainly not in the quantities we are told to eat. Even if there are people out there who have more tolerance to grains for whatever reason, it doesn't necessarily confer immunity.

Thanks for the comments everybody! Very interesting!

Comment edited on: 6/22/2011 8:09:21 AM

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SPACEPRINCESS 6/22/2011 6:50AM

    Had a very bad experience with this...not only did I gain weight on it, but I got sick. My immune system was weaker and I had digestive problems. I should have talked to my doctor about it first because I got a good scolding afterwards. She told me the there's no scientific evidence that it works. I'm thrilled if others are having good experiences, but it's definitely a "buyer beware" situation.

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KAKIPOPUP 6/22/2011 3:29AM

    I'm A- and I tried this diet more than 10 years ago and gained a ton of weight as I always do if I eat too many grains and not enough protein. FWIW -

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 11:11PM

    No? Then why are Type A, B, AB more likely to develop pancreatic cancer than type O's?

I found this interesting:

"The four human blood groups are defined by the type of glycoproteins confections of sugar and protein found on the surface of red blood cells and other cells, including those in the pancreas. A gene known as ABO helps construct these glycoproteins by ordering the placement of sugar molecules on a protein "backbone" called the H antigen. The pattern formed by these sugars determines whether an individual's blood type is A, B, AB, or O. (In the O type, no sugars are attached to the antigen.)"


We only discovered blood types in 1901. We still don't know a lot about it.

Playing devil's advocate. I don't really know one way or the other. If sugars are added to the antigens, then that gives another outlet for the body to dispose of extra glucose. If no sugar is attached to Os, then that could be why they are more carb/sugar sensitive.

Blood communicates with every cell in our bodies, carries nutrients, transports hormones, and whisks away toxins. I don't think it's implausible that differences in our blood types can't alter our health needs.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 11:44:26 PM

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IDIOTSAVANT 6/21/2011 10:42PM

  I'm thinking of writing my book about a great new discovery in dieting. I will call it the Handedness and Tongue Curl diet (HTC for short). It is scientifically proven knowledge that if you are left handed and can curl your tongue to form a 'U' that you should be eating eggs every morning to lose weight. And if you are right handed and can't curl your tongue that grains will make you fat! After all, which hand you use to bring food to your mouth and how you move the food around in your mouth are essential in the eating process. It really makes complete sense.....

I don't mean to mock (ok, I guess I do) but this is nuts. Blood antigen markers have nothing to do with hormone levels or metabolic pathways involved in nutrition, energy balance or fitness. Calling 0 positive 'Paleo' and therefore designating a certain way to eat is like calling brown eyes 'Paleo' or red hair 'neo'. It has nothing to do with nutrition. Blood typing is just a cool 'sciency' thing that is understandable by pop culture and therefore a target for get-rich-quick schemes. What I really want to know is what the 11-stranded DNA metaphysics folks say about how we should eat!

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 10:16PM

    Let us know what you think. I'd like to know the sources he references. It's really hard to find anything in a google search, except tons of people who say it's ridiculous. Ok, fine. I just want to see what a crazy haired scientist who actually tried it has to say.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 10:21:43 PM

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JUSTBIRDY 6/21/2011 10:03PM

    I just got a copy of the book today

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DINGALLSTOO 6/21/2011 8:07PM

    (Frecks Mom here)I have a type O friend who absolutel insists on starting her day with protein. I am A+ and do feel better eating lots of veggies. I am not giving up meat though.

I have the book. Some of it does make sense.

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FRECKS96 6/21/2011 7:41PM

    My mom followed this for awhile, many years ago-though I don't remember how much success she had. I do seem to remember that she felt like she had more energy and that she felt better when eating closer to the guidelines. I don't think she lost weight however.

I think it's it's great in theory. It doesn't cut out foods for any of the types, just suggests eating less of certain things and more of others. I remember that it seemed pretty balanced.

I'm an A-, the biggest thing I remember is that pineapple is good for As!

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 6:26PM

    I agree. It's really the sugar issue that is driving us into an early grave and 30%+ bodyfat. Everything can be traced back to the industrial sugars and refined grained. They changed the message to whole grains too late for most of us, but I'm not even sure that helps.

As far as the ethnic potpourri that is America, well, genetics isn't my strong point. But I imagine dominate genes would supercede. My Asian heritage seems to dominate most of my genetic predispositions, including low tolerance to wheat and beer!

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 6:29:23 PM

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RKJ1969 6/21/2011 6:18PM

    I'm A- but if I eat one bite of grains I gain!

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BTVMADS 6/21/2011 6:09PM

    I'm not really sure if so much of how our bodies respond to food can be traced to such a small part of our biology. All human blood performs the same functions, so I doubt that types really impact things so much. I'm pretty sure I'm either type A blood or type AB, and none of those things apply -- with my anemia, red meat is a HUGE help (I honestly need to eat more than I do, but it's expensive) and vegetarianism did NOT help me stay fit and energetic.

Even the idea that our metabolisms evolved at different periods is hard for me to find useful (no matter how plausible) since Americans are such a huge mixture of many different ethnic groups. I'm entirely Northern and Western European in my heritage, but clearly a diet rich in starches has not helped me at all. I can't imagine the information would be any more useful to someone who is part European, part African, and part Asian descent!

I think that what's really important about all of these blood type diets is that they are all missing added sugars, processed grains, and sodium-rich foods. Obesity was not an issue 100 years ago, when nobody was eating to their blood type.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 6:11:16 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 5:42PM

    I'm following "Protein Power" plan. This was just a random thought I was perusing. It happens to have some ideas am already doing. I'm pretty solid on my eating plan at the moment. I just wondered if there was anything to the idea our blood types might be a marker on how our body is aligned. I am undecided.

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    I never said it was "your" diet, I was acknowledging that it was worth discussing and that my starting viewpoint is one of great skepticism, which is often the case. Since there is no science, we can only go with gut feels and I think it is a gross oversimplification. At best, it's a starting point, at worst, it's a waste of time. But I truly like that you're going to give it a try and see. I like when others are guinea pigs. :)

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    I am type A+ and definitely not a vegetarian and cannot tolerate raw foods at all. Interestingly, A+ has the most platelets. I am a definite carnivore and grew up on chopped liver, lol, and eggs.

I have heard of the Blood Type Diet but while many expound on it, it is not proven.

I say, whatever works for you - do it.

Good Luck to you and happy researching!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/21/2011 4:48PM

    I think maybe we need to read this book as a group and discuss it on a thread over at the HITsquad...



I might enjoy poking holes in the genetics, if there are any...

Or we can just go review this page:


Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 4:50:26 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 4:32PM

    BTW, I don't think the author intended to imply that the blood type antigen is the factor that affects your metabolism, so much as gives you an indication on which time period your metabolism is MOST likely to have adapted to. But that is a guess, since I haven't read the book.

Your blood type is a marker on whether your body is more paleo (30,000+), early neo(20,000), late neo(10,000), or modern(1500). Does that make sense?

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 4:46:47 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 4:13PM

    BEARCLAW6: Awesome breakdown! I have no idea what the book says about AO/BO, etc etc. I haven't read it.

It suggests a mostly vegetarian diet for Blood Type A, with whole grains, which would not work for me. So no, I don't think you could just pick up any general diet and it would work. Maybe for some, but I know it does not work for me.

I think it is possible that some people have developed a grain tolerance, in the same way lactose tolerance was gained. Whether that is related to blood type antigen, or other factor, is unknown. We don't have any studies.

The government certainly won't study it, because they want us all to eat grains.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 4:23:08 PM

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BEARCLAW6 6/21/2011 3:45PM

    I think that a diet based on your ancestry or body biochemistry makes a whole lot of sense. I just don't think that two genetic markers that result in slightly different glycosylation patters on certain blood cells has a whole lot to do with the bigger picture of your personal biochemistry. Basically, if one parent is AO+- genetically (so A+) and the other parent is BO+- (so B+) you could end up any combination of A, B, O, + or - and it would have absolutely no correlation to all the other genetic factors that make you deal with nutrition the way you do. The other problem I have with this is that if you are blood type A+, you have not idea if you are also O- at the same time. Genetics works that way. You carry two copies at each of these loci and the 'other' copy may be the hidden recessive marker. You could be a carrier of O and Rh negative while manifesting as A+. Does this diet take this into account?

My parents are good examples of this. One is A+ and the other is B+. I am O+, so they must both be carriers of O. With all the factors involved in genetics and ancestry, am I really supposed to be eating a totally different diet than both my parents?

I will admit that I have not read up on the Blood Type diet, but my guess is that it suggests four relatively reasonable diets that any one of which would work for most people. So, you start the one that matches your blood type and it works! Wow!

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 2:53PM

    Here is the China distribution:

Region O A B AB
Chinese-Canton 46 23 25 6
Chinese-Peking 29 27 32 13

Canton is SE China near Hong Kong. Peking is NE China near Mongolia. Blood Type B emerged from Mongolia, so there's a pretty good distribution of B's throughout Asia and Eastern Europe.

Here is Japan and Korea:
Japanese 30 38 22 10
Koreans 28 32 31 10

Also, there is a misconception about Asian carbs. They do not eat a lot of simple carbs. Their sugar consumption is far, far lower than the west, which is largely why their metabolic syndrome rates are much lower. They eat mainly one form of complex carbs - rice. It is processed into a variety of things, like noodles. Most of the carbs come in the form of vegetables, which comes packaged with fiber, which slows glucose absorption. They are not vegetarians - vegetarianism is a bizarre idea in Asia. Their preferred form of protein is fish.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 3:17:06 PM

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MRPLATSON 6/21/2011 2:45PM

    From what I understand of the Blood Type diet it is to promote natural bodily health, yes that would put it in the same category as colon cleansing...as basically just a way to sell something that potentially has no benefits.
The premise of the diet (in the true meaning of the word) is to give an idea of what kind of things work better in your system and which don't; it's not about losing weight, it's about eating for the sake of 'well being'. The effects are not immediate, they manifest in the long-term quality of life - except proving the correlation is rather difficult. I tie my shoes differently and attribute my improved quality of life to THAT, maybe I should go write a book. Examples in the book say things like If you are type A eat fish and chicken, avoid beef... if you are type B eat beef and lamb, avoid chicken... etc.
But the science is shoddy at best, seems to be based mostly on circumstantial evidence. Lets try an example, apparently in the US we are all obese because we are mostly type O and we don't do well with all these simple carbs. Now, lets look at China...guess what their blood type is and then look at what they're getting the majority of their calories from.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 2:48:28 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 2:44PM

    Thanks for that link to Scientific American! That was exactly where my line of thinking was going with the sickle cell mutation that confers immunity to malaria. Some ethnic groups could have developed a tolerance to the damaging effects of glucose from carbohydrates in a similar manner.

Although, I would not be the case study that O's have the best teeth. Mine are pretty damaged. However, they were damaged by a high sugar/high carbohydrate diet.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 2:46:43 PM

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/21/2011 2:33PM

    According to this article solid evidence has been found linking susceptibility to certain cancers with alleles in the ABO system


And there are supposedly interesting anectotal stories floating around that A have the worst hangovers, O the best teeth, and A2 the highest IQs.

(There are twenty kinds of A; A1 is 80% of them, A2 is most of the rest - A3 through A20 are extremely rare.)

In Japan there is a popular theory that the ABO alleles are linked to personality types.


It will be interesting to see what might come out of more association studies. So far nothing relating ABO alleles to metabolism, however.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 2:39:44 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 2:09PM

    Don: Oh goodness yes! You should know your blood type just because!

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 2:06PM

    I think that is why we haven't seen any clinical trials. Medical research is still arguing about lipids.

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DDOORN 6/21/2011 1:58PM

    Blood type? What's that? Lol...ages ago my mother was talking to me about this and wanted to know my blood type. Have never found out. But it IS an interesting idea and I suppose I oughta know, especially being a cyclist...one never knows what mishap might make it helpful to know one's blood type!

Curious to see what you come up with!


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ANDREA409 6/21/2011 1:54PM

    I'm glad you blogged about this. A few years ago a friend of mine told me about this, but I never really looked into it, for the same reasons you didn't. The evolutionary line aspect of it does make sense to me. Of course there would be some people that don't fall neatly into the categories, because we started moving around and "intermingling" with other tribes. But I get the main premise, and it's interesting.

I'm also O+. The anecdotal evidence I've seen in my life is unmistakable, as you know. A vegetarian diet was not good for me. Meat and veggies are. I do eat fruit, but only a few servings a day. I also still eat one serving of brown rice everyday.

Since I've started eating meat, all I want is red meat, all the time. I eat at least one full-fat hamburger every single day. Lower-fat meats rarely do it for me. It could be the fact that the red meat contains the nutrients my body severely needs. Or maybe there's more to it.

Very cool and thought-provoking. But, yeah, I'd like to see the science. I don't know who would fund this study, as it is highly unconventional, unfortunately.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 2:02:00 PM

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 1:42PM

    BREWMASTERBILL: Not saying this is my diet. Just throwing it out as a discussion point. The evolutionary data doesn't sound hocus pocus to me. But, I don't have anything to conclude, because there aren't any clinical trials. There is only the trial of "me", and what I have observed works for me.

As far as optimal diet, I think it fits "all of the above". Makes you feel good, have lots of energy, maintains a healthy weight range, and all internal functions are performing in balance - cardiovascular, mental, liver, kidney - etc. The variables change person to person on 'optimal'. However, I refuse to believe that it is unquantifiable. That is hocus pocus.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 1:56:01 PM

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JUSTBIRDY 6/21/2011 1:37PM

    If you think blood type is just such a big deal, read Dr. Kruse's blog. For him, it's all about the mitochondria. Many people do not know that our little energy producers have their own DNA, and we don't get that from our dads. The way we deal with energy is inherited from our mothers. All our mitochondria comes from the cytosol in the egg.
From what I have read so far, variations in hormonal make-up and expression are probably the biggest contributors to any metabolic variability.
Yes, remember when women were just called hysterical???? Now we're just called fat and lazy.

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    Well, it's an interesting idea, but I guess I failed to understand what you mean by "optimal" diet? Is it one that makes you feel the most energetic? Increased weight loss? Increased satiety? More favorable p-ratio? I'm not beyond discussing it, but I'm skeptical. It has a lot of hocus pocus sounding stuff to me. But just like any diet, if it works for you, I'm 100% behind it.

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 1:31PM

    Well, I don't think it's too much of a stretch, since blood carries everything to and from every cell in our bodies. Our blood type means the shape of our blood cells and their receptors. I think it is entirely plausible that certain blood types can handle a high glucose load (from carbohydrates or other) better than others, and not get damaged, due to the shape of the surface. I just think that means they are less likely. Doesn't mean they are impervious to damage, like say high soda consumption.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 1:37:00 PM

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/21/2011 1:20PM

    Although I'm an O and I do well on a meat & veggies diet, I'm kind of suspicious that the blood type genes would be closely linked to metabolic types.

I reckon that since O is the most common blood type and most people do pretty well on a protein & veggies diet, that there would be considerable overlap, even if there were no genetic correlation at all.

Until we find genetic markers directly linked to metabolism of particular macronutrients I imagine this sort of analysis will be tricky.

In any event, it's probably simplest to experiment on ourselves as you and I have done and figure out by trial and error what works best for us individually...

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 1:23:11 PM

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JUSTBIRDY 6/21/2011 12:58PM

    My chiropractor also recommended that I eat more for type A, but that is not good for me anymore.
I am also skeptical of the paleo claims based on anthropological data, but I do think it is a healthy diet. I just don't believe all the "caveman" evidence and cringe when I hear that. Guess I just am not all that into the cave-thing, even though I am happy with my modified-Paleo diet.

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VHALKYRIE 6/21/2011 11:52AM

    ZUMBAMAMA3: Thanks! That's what makes me wonder. This is why we need clinical trials, because there could be other factors.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 12:46:07 PM

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ZUMBAMAMMA3 6/21/2011 11:41AM

    vary informative, i'm typer A grains make me gain weght fast and i love meat and dairy. emoticon

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LUCYSUNFLOWER 6/21/2011 11:02AM

    Years ago I read a book called "Eat Right 4 Your Type" and it was based on the same premise you brought up. I have no idea where the book is now (probably loaned it and didn't get it back!) but it's no longer on my shelf.

I really tried to be a vegetarian several years ago, and my acupuncturist begged me to quit. She asked me my blood type (O-) and said I was a "hunter-gatherer" and needed red meat. That was really the first person from the medical community (my medical community is very broad!) who echoed something I'd been wondering. She and I discussed it a little, and then when I got home discovered the book was missing. I really do think some people exist better than I do on a vegetarian diet, and I always wonder what their blood type is!

Blood type is an indicator of biological differences between us, and is one reason I detest one-size-fits-all thinking. I don't have a scientific mind (or career path) so after an undetermined data point it all swirls into a big pile o' mental mush - I retain just enough to know it was interesting! LOL And I will be interested if you find some more data on the subject...


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PRANA_DANCER 6/21/2011 10:54AM

    "Ansel Keys..."

I see what you did there. :P

Anyways, I'm O+ as well *high five*. I should probably give more but I'm terrified of needles. Still, they say you save an average of 3 lives with every donation. Makes it a bit of a moral duty, don't you think? *sigh*

Honestly, in regards to the diets, I would like to see more science behind it before I make any decisions, just like I want to do more research into the Paleo/Primal diets.

But if it's true, it would certainly support the "no diet fits everyone" saying.

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REBCCA 6/21/2011 10:50AM

    A naturopath I see for Bio-Energetic testing recommended this Blood Type diet for me in around 2003. I am type A and did follow the guidelines and still mostly do follow the food groups even though naturopath recanted his recommendation. When I became a vegetarian I lost the extra 50 pounds I wanted and have kept them off every since losing them. I have become a pescatarian which is also within the guidelines for my Type A.

My husband equivalent is a type O and thrives on that style of eating.

There is much controversy about "Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type" but it works for me. I also mostly observe the principles of food combining.

I like your blog!! emoticon

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JUSTBIRDY 6/21/2011 10:49AM

    I have not read the book, but some of my friends are quite enthusiastic about it. I'm type A (in temperament too!) and while I did well as a vegetarian for awhile, I find that grains do not serve me well. I do crave and eat red meat. What I have read about it is pretty thin on data, but I want to read the book just to see what it is all about.
But, I think there is something to this blood type thing. Maybe not the exact things claimed in the book, but the idea that different people have different chemistries which may clearly explain the differences in response to certain treatments, be it diet or drug.
We have only identified subtle differences in blood due to the disastrous effects of transfusions, but nowadays, we are discovering differences all the time.

Comment edited on: 6/21/2011 12:50:40 PM

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IMNENA23 6/21/2011 10:36AM

    Wow! How interesting! I'd like to learn more. Thanks for the research.

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BASBONBON 6/21/2011 10:35AM

    how interesting this was. you sure did some homework to get all the stats. I've already cut red meat and pork fro my diet. thanks for the info and your hard work

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ZeroWater Filter

Monday, June 20, 2011

Note: This was originally posted in another blog, but I realized that I got my messages mixed up, and decided to move this to a new blog post.

I have got a different sort of health gadget. It's a new water filter. I have used a Brita water filter for years, but I have recently become concerned about the flouride in my water. Most municipalities in the US flourinate the water, because supposedly it aids with better teeth.

Well, flouride is a carcinogen, as is chlorine. I used Brita to get rid of the chlorine, but I discovered it doesn't actually remove the flouride too. I work from home most of the time, so I am constantly drinking my Brita filtered water. I don't work in an office where they have distilled water coolers.

Don't get me wrong - I'm totally ok with using chlorine to sanitize drinking water. I'm ok with removing it when it comes from my tap. However, I don't want the flouride, too. I think brushing my teeth and using mouthwash is all the flouride I need.

Why is it important? Our bodies are 80% water. Cleaner the water, cleaner our bodies. Clean water is the most important thing for eliminating diseases and improving health. We can live for weeks, even months, without food. We cannot live more than 3-5 days without water. One of my favorite charities is The Water Project, which works to improve water quality in impoverished nations.


I found there is a new water filter that will remove ALL inorganic solids. It is almost as good as a reverse osmosis filter, without the plumbing. It's called ZeroWater.

This makes purified water. The same as bottled water from the convenience stores. BUT it's environmentally friendly! No more plastic bottled water!

It comes with a tester that tests the levels of inorganic solids in water.

Here is my water out of the tap in Savannah, GA. Sorry, these will be hard to see. It was hard to hold the camera steady.

This says 100. So coming straight out of the tap, my water has 100ppm of inorganic solids. This could be a mix of chlorine, flouride, and other trace elements.

This is after filtering the water with my Brita filter. It says 67. So my Brita filter only removed 33% of the inorganic solids in my water.

This is after filtering it through the ZeroWater container. It reads..surprise! 000

The filter says to replace it when the water reads 006 because that means the filter itself could be contaminating the water. As the filter removes these contaminants, at some point they can start leeching into the water. With my current water hardness, they estimate I can filter 40 gallons of water before I need to replace the filter. This is a good thing, because the filter is not cheap. The company has a recycling program, so when I replace the filter, I can send them my old one for recycling. Go green! While the filter is more expensive than Brita, it is more economical than bottled water!

1 gal = 128 fl oz x 40 = 5120 fl oz / 20 fl oz bottle = 256 bottled water.

256 x $1.29 = $330

A new filter costs $25. And I'm not throwing 256 bottles in a landfill.

Now, this filter is MUCH slower than my Brita filter. This is ok, it is working harder. So I just take the filtered water and put it in a water container I store in my fridge. This is a 1.25 gallon container. Now I have my own at home water cooler! I just don't have to listen to annoying coworkers go on and on about personal drama when I go refill my cup.

Now, I have read some strange stuff about the 'dangers' of distilled or purified water because it is too pure. This is total crap. Never heard of anyone who died from water that was too clean. Some say that the tap water is good for you because you get important electrolytes like calcium, potassium, magnesium, and zinc.

This is what hard water with all those minerals does to my terra cotta strawberry planter.

My advice: if you want electrolytes, eat good quality food. A banana will give you way more calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc than a glass of tap water.

If you're really worried about the electrolytes you're removing and your water is too pure, here is my recommended cure.

There ya go. A lemon wedge adds back in more magnesium and potassium than your glass of tap water. It's more delicious and refreshing, too.

Need more zinc? Eat this:

Need more calcium? Eat this:

Drink up!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUNEBUG4967 6/21/2011 2:36PM

    There is another one out there - Clear2 O. It is very close to Zero water as far as filtering- you do need to order online and because of the quick connect fitting and length ofthe little hose it can be a bit tricky. The website also offers individual bottles that filter as you drink. It does make great tasting water.

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ANDREA409 6/20/2011 8:04PM

    Very cool recommendation, thanks! My bf is always griping about our Brita filter, so this is something to look into.

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RITZIBROWN 6/20/2011 3:21PM

    Thanks for the info. I had a kidney transplant 04.09.09 & water is important - I aim to drink 17 glasses/day emoticon. DH has run out of UI so we're on my SSA & spending more than we like on bottled water. (Tried Brita & didn't like the taste of the water - who would know?!)
My transplant Drs. allowed me to keep our 2 parrots - with restrictions of course - when we moved here. Our B & G got sick - we had been giving the birds Brita water. After changing to bottled, he got better. Saved us from vet bills. Well that's more than enough. Again a big emoticon

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THINRONNA 6/20/2011 3:16PM

    Nice! Very cool new water filter!

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