Our son came home from college for the three day Easter Holiday. It was wonderful to see him, and to have him telling funny stories about dorm life around the kitchen table. Two aspects of his visit touched on Blood Type Diet issues, and I'll share them with you.
Body building is currently very popular at his school. There are three weight rooms at the student rec. center, and girls as well as guys are into the trend. One of his friends decided to give up meat for lent. When this boy stopped eating meat, he stopped building muscle. No matter how hard he worked, without protein, he could not increase his muscle mass. My son and I speculated about what his blood type might be, and concluded that it is highly likely that he is a Type O like us. There's an application here for me. One of my goals is to firm my muscles, and that means I have got to keep my protein intake high.
On his first night home he was helping set the table for dinner, and asked "Do we have any milk?" I answered that I didn't buy much milk anymore since his dad and sister had pretty much switched over to soy milk. He said, "This summer, I think I'm going to want to drink milk." That is ok with me. I stay really close to the BTD myself, but I am not strict with my family. However, next morning when I made my daughter her morning protein shake, I made one for my son as well. Back when he was running track in high school, I made protein shakes for him all the time, but I made them with cow's milk. This time I made it with soy milk and did not tell him. He liked it, and was really surprised when he found out it was soy milk. He says that they serve a lot of vegetarian meals in the dorm, but that he has never seen soy milk there. Dorm food has come a long way since the 70s when I was in college, but I hope they add soy milk to the menu before my daughter gets there in 4 years.
As a journalist I like to know what the opposition is saying, so occasionally I go on the internet and read what critics of the Blood Type Diet have written. It's usually something like this, "What an odd idea that blood type would have anything to do with what you should eat. Food goes in your stomach, not your blood vessels." I'll let Dr. D'Adamo continue to give his excellent scientific response to such criticism, but I have some thoughts on my emotional response.
The Bible says "Lifeâ€¦is in the blood." Leviticus 17:11. So it doesn't surprise me that blood has everything to do with our health and what we eat. In fact it seems pretty natural for that to be true.
We celebrate Easter because Jesus shed his blood on the cross and rose from the dead. People say "What an odd idea that the death of a man who lived so long ago would have anything to do with me." What it has to do with you is that the Son of God was willing to take the punishment that you and I deserve for the wrong we have done. "Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness." Hebrews 9:22
So today I wish you a Happy Easter. I wish you success and good health as you follow the Blood Type Diet. And I wish you the inner peace you can find if you accept the gift Christ offered when he shed his blood for you.
My daughter has not had a glass of milk since the day I started on the Blood Type Diet. She never liked milk, and she resisted drinking it. When I read that milk was an avoid for Type As I felt so guilty. I said, "I will never make you drink a glass of milk again." She has a protein shake made with soy milk for breakfast every morning, and she eats yogurt several times a week, but she has not touched cow's milk. However at 14, her body needs calcium. I had been giving her 160 mg of magnesium and 400 mg of calcium a day.
She swims in a summer swim league, and she asked if I would consider swimming at night so that she could start getting in shape for the season. Three weeks ago we went to the pool together. She blew past me on the first lap, but several minutes later she was sitting on the side of the pool. She had a serious foot cramp. She stretched it and massaged it, but she was through swimming for the night. I knew it was her calcium so I added another 500 mg per day.
Last week she swam a little farther, but again had to stop because of a cramp in the other foot. This week she's taken 320 mg of magnesium and 1100 mg of calcium. She swam tonight completely free of pain.
When I started trying a new vegetable a week I was at a loss about what to do with some of them. If you've never had escarole, it helps to know that it's a type of lettuce! (I know half of you are thinking how can anyone not know what escarole is and the other half of you are saying esca-what.) I have lots of cook books, but most of them have fancy recipes with lots of avoids. I went to Half Price Books (a used book store) and found several vegetable guides. I bought one that described how to choose vegetables and how to prepare them.
This week the grocery had really fresh looking Swiss Chard. When I got home I consulted the vegetable book and learned that Swiss Chard is "two vegetables in one." The book said to strip the leaves from the stems and cook the leaves like spinach. They were very good, almost as good as beet greens. The book said the stems could be eaten either raw or cooked like asparagus. I prepared them both ways and we voted. My daughter and I both like them raw. I ate mine dipped in olive oil, she dipped hers in peanut butter. My husband preferred them cooked.
I'm going to stick with my "new veggie" topic for a few more days. Having been on the Blood Type Diet for less than a year, I want to encourage you if you are searching around this web site wondering, "What in the world do I eat with my meat if I don't eat potatoes, bread or corn."
When I first read the Type O beneficial list and saw dandelion, I thought "You've got to be kidding - that's a weed." It would have been a long, long time before I paid money for a weed, beneficial or not. However, I was invited to a birthday party at a very trendy restaurant, and as I looked over the menu some words jumped out at me "â€¦served on a bed of five greens including dandelionâ€¦" I ordered it, and surprise, surprise, it tasted fine. I still had not bought dandelion until yesterday. I saw some in the grocery store. It looked a little wilted, so when I got home I cut off the bottom two inches for the stems and plunged the whole bunch in a tub of water. By the time I got back to them a couple of hours later, they had perked up quite a bit.
For breakfast every morning I eat a mixture of seeds and fruit, except on the mornings that I run. Then I make an omelet, usually filled with some vegetable left in the refrigerator. This morning on a whim I put dandelion on top of the eggs. It cooked nicely, just like spinach, and tasted good. Tonight my unsuspecting husband and daughter will find dandelion in their salad.
Probably the best of the greens I have tried so far has been beet greens. Most other cooked greens need quite a bit of seasoning, but beet greens are delicious with just a little butter or olive oil.
The only thing wrong with beet greens is that they come attached to beets. I just can't develop a taste for beets. I'm glad they are a neutral. When I acquired a used juicer, I bought a book on juicing. The man who wrote it has long lists of juice combinations, but his #1 standby is carrot, celery & beet juice. The taste of that combination grows on you. So, I rummage through all the beets in the produce department selecting the bunch that has the most greens and the smallest beets. I thoroughly enjoy my cooked beet greens. Then I use up the beets in juice. (My favorite proportion is 3 carrots, 2 stalks celery, Â½ beet).
When I first started the BTD, I focused on weeding out the avoids in my diet, and eating more of the beneficials that I liked. Soon I became curious about foods on the beneficial list that I had never heard of. I decided to try one new food a week until I'd tasted all the beneficials. I'll start today catching you up on my new foods so far.
I had never eaten artichoke. I tried canned and they were horrible. Frozen were not any better. One day they were on sale 2 for a dollar in the produce department. I bought two and cooked them in the pressure cooker. They were delicious. I served them to my family dreading the response. It turned out my husband ate artichokes growing up and likes them a lot. My daughter doesn't like the way they look and hasn't gotten up the courage to try them. When her brother is home from college this summer, I'll see if I can get them to be brave together.
The first few times I fixed collard greens I ate them only because they were beneficials. Now I grill an onion, then add a small amount of water and the collards. They taste pretty good that way. They are really good when I season them with curry powder OR Cajun seasoning. I buy fresh when I can, but I keep a bag of frozen collards in the freezer all the time. They taste about the same to me.
My new beneficial last week was aduki beans. I bought a can of Eden organic adukis, salt free and seasoned with seaweed. Everyone liked them which is great because they are beneficial for both Os and As.
We journalists like quotes, and here is one I heard today:
"God may heal you, but if you don't change the way you eat, you'll get sick again."