The Blood Type Diet

The blood type diet is based on the idea that we can eat certain foods according to our blood type. But, simultaneously, experts raised questions about whether or not there were any real benefits from this theory and its rigidity.

“Eat Right for Your Type,” the most famous book on the blood type diet, is a New York Times best-seller that has sold more than 7 million copies worldwide since its release in 1996. Dr. Peter D’Adamo, the inventor of the blood type diet, has subsequently published many follow-up volumes, including “Live Right for Your Type” and the 20th anniversary updated version of “Eat Right for Your Type,” all of which include additional suggestions and changes.

You’re undoubtedly wondering whether there’s any proof that the blood type diet is genuinely advantageous, given its popularity. Unfortunately, even though some tailored diets may be quite beneficial for improving health indicators — such as those that assist manage food allergies or illnesses like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes — there isn’t much persuasive data to support the use of blood type diets. “No evidence presently exists to substantiate the supposed health advantages of blood type diets,” according to a 2013 comprehensive review published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

What kind of “tailored diet” do you think would better replace the blood type diet?

A customized diet is one based on genetics, individual sensitivities to various foods, and personal preferences. A tailored diet may help you figure out what meals you should consume and which ones you should avoid. According to certain studies, individuals may consume the same exact items in the same amounts yet have vastly different physiological reactions. While it’s a good idea to tailor your food to your genetics and lifestyle, this doesn’t imply your diet has to be based on your blood type.

Blood Type Diet and How It Works

According to the website, a blood type diet “offers health and nutrition recommendations based on your unique genetic distinctiveness.” Blood type dieters think that knowing a person’s blood type may help them understand how they would respond to certain foods, behaviors, and stresses.

A blood type diet is based on the idea that persons with distinct blood types (O, A, B, and AB) should consume foods and create lifestyle patterns that are most appropriate for their genetic makeups. A person’s blood type is thought to indicate which sorts of meals they would be able to digest best — for example, animal proteins or fruits — and which types they will most likely struggle with. This is due to the variety in a person’s “chemistry.”

The Various Blood Types

According to the designers of the blood type diet, people’s susceptibility to various diseases and medical disorders is directly tied to the kind of blood they were born with. Because blood types differ, no two individuals have the same fundamental dietary requirements, even if they have similar lifestyles.

Human blood is divided into four types: A, B, AB, and O.

  • The most frequent blood type is O. In the United States, type O blood makes up around 44% of the population.
  • In the United States, type A blood makes up around 42% of the population.
  • Type B blood is found in around 10% of persons in the United States.
  • The blood type AB is the least prevalent. Only around 4% of persons in the United States have type AB blood.

Antigens generated by the immune system that appears on red blood cells’ surface identify blood types. You have type A blood if you have the A antigen and type B blood if you have the B antigen. If you’re not sure what blood type you are, you may find out by taking a blood type test at home or having one done at a doctor’s office or lab. However, after reading on, you may conclude that knowing your blood type isn’t truly required or especially beneficial when it comes to making dietary changes (though you will need to know before a blood transfusion and during pregnancy).

How to Eat Right for Your Blood Type

Many individuals who follow the blood type diet feel it’s necessary to eat in the same manner their forefathers and mothers did, based on the idea that genetics play a big role in nutritional requirements. In this sense, the blood type and Paleo diets (sometimes known as the “ancestral diet”) have certain similarities. While the Paleo diet may not be suitable for everyone, studies have shown that following this eating plan offers several health advantages.

According to writers of publications and meal plans regarding the blood type diet, the following are typical suggestions for which foods to consume based on your blood type:

If you have blood type A, you should: 

Because of the links that have been drawn between blood type A and traditional agricultural or horticultural techniques, some persons identify to themselves as “agrarians” or “cultivators.” Type As, according to D’Adamo, absorb carbohydrates easier than other blood types, but have trouble digesting and metabolizing animal protein and fat.

  • Most of the time, or all of the time, consume a meat-free, vegetarian diet.
  • Vegetables, fruits, legumes, and gluten-free grains are the foods that are emphasized the most. Some of the best options are apples, avocados, berries, figs, peaches, pears, plums, artichokes, broccoli, carrots, and leafy greens.
  • Olive oil, coconut oil, and other plant fats like nuts and seeds are good sources of dietary fats.
  • Because blood type A is known to be susceptible to pesticides sprayed on non-organic foods, organic foods are recommended.
  • Most, if not all, meat and dairy items should be avoided.
  • To follow a gluten-free diet, avoid all wheat and foods containing wheat flour, barley, or rye.
  • Don’t consume excessive amounts of alcohol or coffee. Instead, drink plenty of water and herbal teas.
  • Low-impact, relaxing activities such as yoga, tai chi, and strolling are advised.
  • Calcium, iron and vitamins A and E are all suggested supplements.

If you have blood type B, you should:

Because they are thought to have genealogical links to nomadic people who traveled about a lot and covered wide amounts of territory, Type Bs are frequently referred to as “nomads.” In addition, type Bs are thought to have developed a high tolerance for a wide range of foods, which means they benefit from a well-balanced diet that contains modest quantities of all macronutrients.

  • Consume plenty of meat, fruits, and veggies (similar to the Paleo diet). Leafy greens, bananas, grapes, pineapple, plums, olive oil, flaxseed oil, dairy products, turkey, lamb, oats, rice, and millet are some of the most excellent options.
  • If dairy products are acceptable and do not induce indigestion, they may be consumed.
  • Peanuts, maize, lentils, most gluten, and eating a lot of chicken are all things to avoid. Other protein sources may be substituted for chicken.
  • Green tea, water, and fresh fruit juice are all great options.
  • Exercises that are stimulating, such as running, jogging, or cycling, should be done.

If you have blood type AB, you should:

Type ABs are thought to have an advantage over other blood types in that they can digest a wide variety of foods, including protein and fat-rich meals. “Type AB is the only blood type whose existence is due to intermingling rather than evolution and environment,” says D’Adamo. As a result, they have both the advantages and disadvantages of Type A and Type B blood types.”

  • Consume a wide range of meals that are advised for persons with blood types A and B. Because it contains lots of fiber, plant foods, and some dairy and animal protein sources, this may be considered a well-rounded diet.
  • Consume a wide range of fruits, vegetables, shellfish, fish, meat, dairy, legumes, and grains. Leafy greens, apricots, cherries, grapefruit, grapes, kiwi, lemons, pineapples, and plums are some of the greatest options.
  • Avoid indigestion-causing foods such as red meat, cereals, and seeds. Instead, limit your meat intake by eating various fish and shellfish.
  • Beans, maize, vinegar, and alcohol should all be avoided.
  • Water, coffee, and green tea are all excellent options.
  • Perform a range of exercises, some of which are more soothing and others more rigorous.

If you have blood type O, you should:

Type Os are thought to have ancestors who hunted and ate a lot of meat, fish, and other animal items. Type Os are considered to have digestive benefits since they can better metabolize cholesterol present in animal products and absorb calcium from dairy products than other blood types.

  • Eat a low-carb, high-protein diet that includes fish, meats like lamb, veal, mutton, eggs, and other animal sources.
  • Fish is an excellent source of protein. Bluefish, cod, halibut, mackerel, pike, salmon, sea kelp, snapper, sole, sturgeon, and swordfish are just a few examples.
  • Consume fewer carbs and sugars, such as those found in fruits and grains. Consume full-fat dairy products in moderation. Most of the time, stay away from peanuts, maize, legumes, beans, and grains.
  • Regularly engage in aerobic workouts such as running, jogging, or cycling.

Even though the following food requirements seem stringent, the blood type diet allows for some flexibility. Blood type plans may be considered “suggestions,” but they also contain certain items that are restricted by your blood type in moderate or modest quantities.

Does a Blood Type Diet Work?

Despite its popularity, the blood type diet is not without detractors and skeptics. While many health experts think that people’s tolerances for various meals are influenced by their heredity, most believe that blood type has nothing to do with it. The majority believe that blood type should not be a big concern as long as a person’s digestive and immunological systems are in good shape and they eat a nutrient-dense, “clean” diet.

Is there any truth to the blood type diet? Researchers analyzed 16 papers from a total of 1,415 screened references as part of the systematic review stated above, which was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Unfortunately, only one study met the researchers’ tight selection criteria. According to their findings, no research has shown that ABO blood type diets are harmful to one’s health.

“Adherence to certain ‘Blood-Type’ diets is associated with favorable effects on some cardiometabolic risk factors, but these associations were independent of an individual’s ABO genotype, so the findings do not support the ‘Blood-Type’ diet hypothesis,” according to a 2013 review published in the journal PLOS One.

The following are some frequent reasons why someone would want to attempt the blood type diet, as well as explanations as to why the diet may or may not be beneficial:

1. If you want to lose weight

Many individuals gravitate to the blood type diet in the hopes of reducing weight, just as they do with most other diets. It’s conceivable that following a blood type diet can help you lose weight, but this has little to do with your blood type. It’s more than likely because these dietary regimens may be restrictive and, at the very least, limit junk food intake. Following them will help you become more conscious of your eating choices.

Overeating (consuming too many calories) and eating foods that increase inflammation and hormonal imbalances are the most common causes of weight gain. You’ll have to make some compromises if you stick to the blood type diet. People are less likely to consume calories if they restrict the types/variety of meals they eat in general, particularly if they avoid most or all processed, high-calorie foods that are poorly accepted and cause bad digestion and other symptoms. Weight reduction may also happen by consuming more fiber and/or protein, both fully capable of suppressing appetite, depending on which blood type diet someone follows.

2. Improved Resistance to Illnesses or Diseases

Some people believe that eating according to your blood type might boost your immunity and protect you from certain illnesses. However, the same rationale applies here: removing processed/junk foods from the diet and increasing intake of nutritious foods like vegetables or clean proteins should enhance gut health and immunity regardless of blood type. The underlying reason why some people’s health improves while on the blood type diet is that they consume more “clean” foods that help decrease inflammation and defend against common health problems.

3. Need assistance with headaches, asthma, pain, or other ailments

According to testimonials, people with diabetes, frequent headaches, high cholesterol or blood pressure, asthma, allergies, heartburn, arthritis, and other ailments have been able to overcome issues with the blood type diet. Again, it seems evident that eliminating junk foods from one’s diet that include added sugar, processed grains, chemicals, and maybe too much refined or saturated fat would help to alleviate these issues (depending on their medical history).

Poor gut health, hormone imbalances, intolerances or allergies, stress, inactivity, and high inflammation levels are linked to many of these symptoms. Even if you don’t know your blood type, improving your diet and lifestyle — such as eating more plant foods, exercising, and getting enough sleep/rest — may help you fix these issues.

4. Increased Mental Health and Happiness

When people follow the blood type diet, they say they have more energy, are more clear-headed, and are happier. The quality of your nutrition indeed has an impact on your mental health. A good diet, for example, may aid in the treatment of sadness and anxiety. This, however, does not always have to do with blood type.

A healthy diet, more precisely, is excellent for emotional health and well-being since it aids hormone balance, neurotransmitter creation, sleep, and other critical physiological functions. It’s also likely that following any diet makes some individuals feel calmer and more confident since it gives them a feeling of empowerment and control over their lives and acts as a sort of self-care (much how studies demonstrate that exercise improves brain/mental health).

Precautions and Blood Type Diet Alternatives

What are some of the disadvantages of following a blood type diet? Here are some reasons why you might think about other options to the blood type diet:

  • Food preferences aren’t taken into account.
  • Due to emotions of deprivation, it may be challenging to stick to for more than a few months.
  • Your medical history or any potential contraindications aren’t taken into account. For example, some people may have pre-existing medical issues, allergies, or dietary intolerances that prevent them from eating particular foods that their blood type encourages.
  • Supplements may be recommended that aren’t essential.
  • It’s possible that it’s too limiting, causing tension (such as when dining out or in other social situations).
  • It’s possible that it’ll make you deficient in some nutrients.

It’s worth noting that the blood type diet does not, for the most part, take into consideration a person’s unique dietary preferences. This may make sticking to the diet tough, since it’s difficult to stick to a diet you don’t like after a few months. For example, you may want to eat more carbohydrate items (such as fruit, legumes, or whole grains) and less fat or animal protein, but if your blood type dictates that you should consume fewer carbohydrates, you may find it difficult to keep to your plan. Alternatively, you may feel better if you consume a lot of protein, especially from animal sources, but your blood type may dictate that you need to eat a vegetarian plant-based diet.

The objective should be to build a healthy, individualized eating style that you can maintain for a long time. Therefore, it’s essential to be honest with yourself about your preferences and habits. I propose utilizing the following recommendations and strategies to create your own tailored diet:

  • Increase your consumption of fresh veggies, which will benefit you regardless of your diet. Include some fresh fruit as well; however, the quantity will depend on your medical history and objectives.
  • Reduce or eliminate added sugar, refined carbohydrates, and processed fats from your diet.
  • Avoid common allergies such as dairy, gluten, peanuts, eggs, and shellfish, as well as foods that give you any visible symptoms.
  • Protein may come from various sources, including plant-based proteins and animal proteins such as grass-fed beef, pasture-raised eggs and poultry, wild-caught fish, and raw dairy.
  • Increase your fiber intake by eating more vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, legumes, and whole grains in moderation (if you can tolerate them).
  • Include healthy fats in your diet throughout the day, such as those found in coconut oil, olive oil, avocado, nuts, seeds, and animal sources such as eggs and meat.
  • If you feel that consuming particular carbs is causing your digestive issues, consider restricting FODMAP carbohydrates or an elimination diet.


In his book “Eat Right for Your Type,” published in 1996, Dr. P.J. D’Adamo, a naturopathic physician, was the first to promote the concept of a blood diet type. D’Adamo’s recommendations were based on his study into the nutritional practices of ancient tribes and groups. In his works, he claims that distinct blood types evolved throughout eras in history when humans only had access to a limited number of meals, resulting in changes in their digestive systems and their capacity to handle a variety of foods. Many of his suggestions are based on the variable amounts of stomach acids and enzymes he associates with different blood types.

Blood type is linked to genetic polymorphisms in humans, according to some evidence, and may influence risk factors for illnesses, including cancer, diabetes, malaria, and cardiometabolic disorders. While knowing your blood type and family history might help you determine your risk of developing an illness, there is no proof that various diets are more or less healthy for certain blood types. However, some studies have indicated that when persons of different blood types eat a plant-based, low-processed-foods diet (akin to a type A diet), their health improves regardless of their blood type.

Apart from encouraging the blood type diet, D’Adamo advises individuals to avoid most sources of lectins, which are “antinutrients” or sugar-binding proteins that may obstruct nutrient absorption. Foods containing lectins, according to D’Adamo, are incompatible with specific blood types; thus, his new book focuses on enhancing gut health and immunity by removing the most common sources of lectins. However, no evidence of a link between certain blood types and lectin sensitivity has been revealed in investigations yet.


  • According to the website, a blood type diet “offers health and nutrition recommendations based on your unique genetic distinctiveness.”
  • Blood type (A, B, AB, or O) is believed to be an essential tool for understanding how someone responds to different kinds of food by adherents of the blood type diet, yet there is no good evidence that this is accurate.
  • Some people follow a blood type diet to aid weight reduction, immunity, sickness prevention, and overall well-being.
  • When someone follows a blood type diet, the benefits are most likely related to increased nutrient intake, improved gastrointestinal health, and reduced inflammatory items in the diet.
  • Overall, there is little evidence of a relationship between blood type and specific dietary requirements.


Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of a blood type diet?

A: There are many benefits to a blood type diet, including higher levels of good bacteria in your gut which can help with weight loss.

Does the O blood type diet work?

A: There is no scientific evidence to support the O blood type diet claims. The best way to ensure that you are getting all your daily nutrient requirements and energy levels is by eating a balanced diet containing foods from various food groups such as vegetables, starchy carbohydrates, and lean proteins.

Why was the blood type diet created?

A: The blood type diet was created by Dr. Peter D’Adamo, and the purpose of this diet is to help people find out their specific blood types so they can better understand what foods are best for them.

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