When I read my first BTD book, one of the things that rang true with me was that though I'm not particularly strong or coordinated and I'm terrible at all team sports, I really do like intense physical exercise. Yesterday's blog left off with my husband and me giving up running and walking every night pushing a baby stroller.
Our son loved the water, so the summer he was two we joined the local swimming pool. My husband decided that we should swim laps. He had it all planned. I would play with the baby while he swam, then he would entertain the baby while I swam. That was ok, but he wouldn't have long to entertain because I could barely swim.
I had a lot of ear infections as a child (too much milk, I'm sure) and my parents were afraid for me to get water in my ears. I didn't learn to swim at all until I was in 6th grade. By then I was more interested in sunning and watching boys than perfecting the strokes I learned in swim lessons. I nearly drowned at the beach in high school. I decided that sitting by the pool chatting with friends would be enough swimming for me.
The first night I tried to swim laps, I started in the shallow end, ran out of steam before I swam one length of the pool, and had to pull myself to the side using the lane ropes. My husband did not think I should give up. So I would start in the deep end. Then when I got tired I could at least walk to the side without embarrassing myself.
I didn't progress very fast as a swimmer. I think I was still dealing with a lot of old fears. Eventually I could swim the length of the pool. My first victory! To swim a lap, I had to swim into the deep water and back out again. A victory over fear! My husband's goal for me was 10 laps. It took three summers before I reached that goal.
I counted laps in groups of 4, so 12 was my next goal. A half-mile was 16 laps. That seemed impossible, but I made it. The same thing was happening with swimming that had happened with running. Though I was tired when I got out of the water, I felt energized at the same time. Several years passed, and I was getting close to swimming a mile.
One night I swam 15/16ths of a mile. I could have swum those last two laps, but the pool closed. The next morning I was in a car accident, and injured my shoulder. I didn't swim at all the rest of that year. The next summer I had to start all over, trying just to swim a lap.
Because we didn't run any more, swimming was the most strenuous exercise I got. I think my Type O desire for the high that comes with vigorous exercise was all that kept me from giving up on swimming. Though I didn't know about the BTD back then, the built in characteristics of my Blood Type were at work.
I swim a lot in the summer and 1 day a week year round. I normally swim Â¾ mile in about 40 minutes. That's not particularly fast - but I have never claimed to be an athlete.
I write a lot about exercise, but if you think I'm an athlete you couldn't be more wrong. I was never any good at team sports as a child. You think I'm exaggerating? When we chose up sides for games at recess Paulette and I were always the last two chosen. PE was my least favorite subject in junior high. I loved music and reading. It was a wonderful day when I found out I could get PE credit for marching band in high school.
I would have been very happy never to exercise, but I married my husband. His family was friends with aerobics guru Dr. Ken Cooper. My husband jogged several times a week and was convinced that his new bride should jog too. When I told him I had never run a quarter of a mile he didn't believe me. He marked off a 1 mile course near our little house, and was shocked when I could not make it to the Â¼ mile point.
But being newlyweds, I wanted to please him, so I tried to run. Eventually I made it Â¼ mile, then Â½ mile, and finally a full mile without stopping. A funny thing happened at a mile. I began to like running. About the time I thought I was too tired to take another step there was a rush. There was also a wonderful sense of accomplishment.
We began to run together at a track. He was in better condition and has much longer legs, so he could always run faster than me. But it turned out he didn't really enjoy running, he just did it because he thought he should (remember he is Type A all the way). So he would run a mile and stop. I would run a mile, plus an extra quarter or two.
One day we went on a picnic with a big group of friends. Our picnic site was by a trail that made a three-mile loop through a beautiful park. Jogging was very popular in the late 70s so a group of us started off on the trail. I wasn't very fast, so I quickly fell to the back of the pack. But I kept going, and I began to pass the other women as they were walking. I began to pass the men. I passed my husband. I ran the whole three miles. In fact I was the only one in our group who ran the whole course without stopping to walk. I cannot tell you how good I felt, physically and emotionally.
My husband and I continued to run together until the year that I was pregnant with our first child. He hurt his back that year and had surgery. Running was over for him. After the baby was born we began to walk together in the evenings. It looked like running was over for me too. Then I started the Blood Type Diet and decided to see if I could run again at 50 years old. I've already blogged that story.
This blog is too long - tomorrow I will tell you how a non-athlete learns to swim.
I had been in the mood for Kohl Slaw (my name for a Paul Buckless recipe that somewhat resembles Cole Slaw). So last night I grated two kohlrabi, then realized I was out of lemons. We had huge thunderstorms in the area, so a quick trip to the grocery was out of the question. I tried to think of something tart that I could substitute. Vinegar came to mind, but that is avoid for my husband and daughter. In the freezer I had a container of frozen pineapple juice concentrate. I mixed undiluted pineapple juice with olive oil and tossed it with the grated kohlrabi. It was really good (maybe better than the original) and highly beneficial for both As and Os.
Elaine knows how I love parsnips. She sent me a scrumptious sounding recipe for parsnip fries. My only hesitation was that they are deep-fried. I read so many studies warning about dangers from deep-frying, that I gave up deep-fried foods years ago. (ok I gave them up except for fried okra, which I continued to eat until the BTD made me give up breaded food). But Elaine's parsnip fries sounded so good. I sliced some parsnips and tried making them as oven fries. They were ok, but not outstanding. The thick slices were chewy not crisp. I went back to the recipe and saw that it recommended very thin slices. Last night I put a thin blade on the food processor, sliced two parsnips and cooked them in the oven with a little grapeseed oil. They were crisp and delicious.
Vicky sent me this idea, "A cool, pasta substitute for us O's, - instant wakame seaweed flakes. I soak 7grams (about a quarter of a package) in a cup of cool water for 5 to 10 minutes and drain off the water as the wakame is extremely saltyâ€¦You will be amazed at how those tiny flakes plump up into large spinach-pasta-like strips. This yields something like a cup of "pasta"."
I would never have dreamed of eating seaweed before the BTD, but it is on the beneficial list. I bought some wakame flakes and tried them two nights ago as a side dish, the way I would have eaten a side dish of noodles in pre-BTD days. They were ok, but a little strong. Yesterday for lunch I was tossing leftovers into a bowl and I in went the wakame. Mixed with tuna and several vegetables they tasted really good. It looked sort of like a green pasta salad. It was more filling than the fish and veggies would have been alone. Wakame just became a part of my diet.
My daughter has me hooked on a satellite TV show called "What not to wear." They select a woman for a complete hair, makeup and wardrobe makeover. She is rarely someone with a perfect figure or face. She usually has an outdated sense of fashion. It's fun to watch as fashion experts Stacy and Clinton transform an ordinary woman into a stylish one.
Our weather has finally turned cool, so this weekend it was time to put away summer shorts and get out long pants and sweaters.
A year ago when I went through this process, I had been on the Blood Type Diet for almost 6 months. I had lost 7-8 pounds and my old clothes were loose. I was scared to buy a new wardrobe. I didn't know for sure whether this diet would work long term. What if I put the weight back on? I needed someone from the TV show to get in my face and say, "What are you afraid of?" It seemed impossible that size 8s fit me - who had been a size 12 for so long. So all last winter I wore baggy clothes. I looked pretty frumpy.
But now as I approach my year and a half anniversary on the BTD I have the confidence that I am never going back to my old way of eating. I am not going to regain the weight that I have lost.
I announced to my daughter, "We're playing â€˜What not to wear' and you get to be Stacy and Clinton. I began pulling clothes out of storage. Most of the pants and lots of the tops went in a pile for the Salvation Army. Whenever I had trouble parting with an old favorite, my daughter would laugh and say, "Mom, it has to go."
Then I hit the pre-Thanksgiving sales. When I got home I modeled my purchases for my husband and daughter, just like on the show. As I type this blog I can still see the approval in my husband's eyes, and hear my daughter saying, "Oh Mom, that is so cute." This is fun; this is better than TV. This is reality!
The Bible has a lot to say about food and health, but does it ever refer to the BTD? Not directly of course, because the science of typing blood was not available to the Biblical writers. But there is one passage, which has application, and since it was part of my personal Bible study this morning, I thought I would write about it.
The Bible is the living Word of God, and because of that a verse can have several levels of meaning. Some of the Old Testament prophecies had their first fulfillment in the nation of Israel, but were also prophecies of the Messiah. I can read something that Jesus said to his disciples and find application for my life. The primary message of the story of Peter and Cornelius in Acts 10 and 11 is the acceptance of gentiles into the Christian church. But there is a sub level application to the Blood Type Diet.
God gave the Jews a lot of dietary laws. In the Old Testament you will find lists of clean and unclean foods. You will also find positive references to milk & milk products and wheat.
At the moment in history described in Acts 10, the Christian church was made up of converted Jews. They followed all the Jewish laws, but had also accepted Jesus as Messiah. Jewish law forbad them to have contact with gentiles. God's plan was that salvation through Jesus Christ be for all people: Jews and gentiles. So God had to shake things up, and He did so by giving the Apostle Peter a vision. Peter saw a sheet containing all kinds of unclean food, and heard God say to get up and eat. Peter, being a good Jew refused, saying that he had never eaten anything unclean. God responded, "Do not call anything impure that God has made clean." Almost immediately a gentile named Cornelius sent for Peter. Realizing that the vision meant that God was showing him that he should not "call any man impure or unclean," Peter told Cornelius about Jesus, and Cornelius became the first gentile Christian.
On the surface this has nothing to do with the Blood Type Diet, but here is the application. Dr. D'Adamo has written that most Jews were Type B. The Old Testament Dietary laws seem remarkably close to the Type B food lists. So the Jews, if they followed the law, lived healthy lives.
However at this moment in history, the Christian faith was about to become a worldwide religion. What if the early Christians had taught their new gentile converts, who were Type A and Type O, that they had to follow the Jewish dietary laws? The teaching that was giving new life to their souls, would have made them physically unhealthy.
Christian teachers have for years referred to this passage as proof that Christians are free from the Old Testament dietary laws. Not only do I agree, but I see God's grace in that as he was extending salvation to the whole world, he was also removing a part of the law that had protected the Jews but would have harmed other races.
Today there are at least three books proclaiming themselves to be "Bible Diets." I tried to follow one of them several years before I found the Blood Type Diet. It pushes dairy products, whole grains, and legumes. It made me put on weight and sapped my energy. Small wonder - it is basically a Type B diet.
God, in Acts 10 and 11 frees all blood types from the Old Testament Law. Though scientists would not discover Blood Types for 100s of years, God knew how he had made us. He protected Type Os, As, and ABs from legalistically trying to follow a Type B diet.
One last word - the #1 Jewish ban is pork. It is also forbidden in Muslim law. And it is an avoid for every blood type.