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I have blogged at other times about my journey from totally unhealthy eating, to being a health food nut, to the Blood Type Diet. One of the books that had an impact on my health food stage was Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Nutrition by David Reuben. His father died of colon cancer and he wanted to protect himself from that disease. His research said a high fiber diet was the best way to do that. He introduced me to bran and wheat germ which I ate for years. While his plan kept my bowels moving, the wheat worked against me as a Type O, and eventually led to indigestion.
When I started the BTD in 2003 I had to find alternate fibers to avoid constipation. I knew that colon cancer and colon polyps were also part of my genetic history. I applied Reuben’s high fiber research to the BTD.
I had my first colonoscopy in 2005. While the experience was terrible, the results were excellent. No polyps.
When I had my 2nd colonoscopy this year, I expected good results again. I did not expect two polyps, and I sure didn’t expect one of them to be pre cancerous.
I left the clinic with diet recommendations from the doctor. Since then I have been looking at his recommendations, the Blood Type Diet, the GenoType Diet, and Dr. D’s Cancer Prevention book.
The diet from colon doctor says that while fiber is important for other colon conditions – it doesn’t help polyps. Here is his list of things to do to reduce polyp formation.
* Reduce red meat intake to only 2 times a week or less.
* Eat more fruits and vegetables
* Calcium supplementation 1,200 mg per day
* Don’t smoke
* Be physically active.
* Maintain normal weight
* Take one baby aspirin a day.
* Study results on alcohol are mixed. Some studies show alcohol increases colon cancer, other studies show red wine may reduce cancer risks.
I already do most of what is on list yet my colon health declined. Why?
I eat more fruit & vegetables than I did before the BTD. I take more calcium than is recommended. I get selenium in my multiple vitamin, plus I eat many selenium containing foods. I have never smoked. I exercise 5-6 days a week. My weight is normal for my height, and lower than average for my age. I don’t drink wine, but I eat a lot of black and red grapes.
That leaves red meat intake and aspirin where there are conflicts between the anti-polyp diet and the BTD.
I am not going to take the aspirin. I have seen in myself and in my father what happens when type O’s take Vitamin E and aspirin as preventive measures. It leads to increased bruising and longer clotting times. My Type O blood is already thin enough. I will leave the aspirin for thick blooded Type As.
Red Meat – this is the tough one, because at first glance it seems to be in opposition to the BTD. Food portions in the Little Books – which I always reach for first since they are so easy to use, are: Lean red meat 2-5 ounces 4-6 times per week. Poultry 2-5 ounces 2-3 times per week.
Because red meat makes me feel so good, I had gone toward the high end of the scale eating 4-5 ounces 5-6 times a week. Since getting my lab results on the pre-cancerous polyp, I have made a slight adjustment. I am weighing my beef and eating 3-4 ounces. For lunch and dinner on one day I have fish and poultry. The next day I have fish and beef. Once or twice a week I substitute 3 eggs for a one of those portions. This puts me having beef about 3 times per week.
I looked at the portions in Dr. D’s Cancer Prevention book. There is a slight difference between it and the Little Books. In the Cancer Prevention book, he groups beef and poultry together saying to eat 2-5 ounces 6-9 times a week. My new plan is right in line with that recommendation. The book also contains a two page explanation of Dr. D’s position on beef and cancer. It is worth reading if you have concerns in this area.
Another slight conflict between the Dr. D and anti-polyp diets concerns apples. I used to eat an apple a day. After the GTD came out, I cut back to 1 or 2 apples a week. The Cancer Prevention book says apples are frequent neutrals. I am not eating an apple a day, but I am increasing my apple intake significantly.
I had taken myself off of almost all grain. There are no beneficial grains for Type O except manna bread, and the recommended portions for grains are 1 serving 1-6 times a week. I felt good with 0-1 servings. I am thinking that may be too extreme. I am trying to reincorporate 1 portion of neutral grains 3-5 times a week.
I won’t have another colonoscopy for 5 years. That is a long time to wonder whether my new program will succeed in preventing polyp formation.
BTW I love your blog and eat very similarly to you (I'm O+ non secretor, probably gatherer).
Why don't you try eating more fish and cutting back your red meat to 3 servings or less per week. I feel great on the fish, fish, fish!
Sorry to hear about your ailment.
This is what Dr. D. posted in the forum about grains for us Hunters:
"Grain and legumes are about the only sources of phytates, which are anti-oxidant mineral chelators. There are pros and cons to phytates (some people would argue that they block mineral absorption) but they do have fairly potent anti-cancer effects in the colon, which in the case of GT1 Hunters is a bit of an Achilles heal."
This is the thread: http://www.dadamo.com/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1228587567/s-43/#num43
Although some hunters, per Swami, are allowed some grains containing gluten eg. spelt, I have found out that the main difference for me between the BTD and hunter diet was the avoidance of gluten. You may want to consider allowed hunter grains vs. BTD grains as you incorcorate grains back into your diet.
Hope your ailment gets solved non agresively.
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