Archives for: April 2004
STUDY: Protection from phenytoin-induced cognitive deficit by Bacopa monniera, a reputed Indian nootropic plant.
JOURNAL: J Ethnopharmacol 2000 Aug;71(3):383-90
AUTHORS: Vohora D, Pal SN, Pillai KK.
ABSTRACT: Many epileptic patients suffer from cognitive impairments; both the underlying pathology and antiepileptic drug therapy can cause such deficits. Phenytoin, one of the widely used anticonvulsants, is known to adversely affect cognitive function. A reputed Indian nootropic plant Bacopa monniera (BM) was evaluated alone and in combination with phenytoin for its effect on (a) passive-avoidance (PA) task; (b) maximal electroshock seizures; and (c) locomotor activity in mice. Bacopa extract (40 mg/kgx7 days), given along with phenytoin in the second week of the two-week regimen, significantly reversed PHT-induced mental impairment. Both acquisition and retention of memory showed improvement without affecting its anticonvulsant activity. (J Ethnopharmacol 2000 Aug;71(3):383-90)
COMMENTARY: Bacopa ('Brahmi') is an Ayurvedic botanical with apparent anti-anxiety, anti-fatigue, and memory-strengthening effects. Bacopa monniera, Linn. (Brahmi: Scrophulariaceae) an Ayurvedic medicine is clinically used for memory enhancing, epilepsy, insomnia and as mild sedative. The results suggested that Brahmi is a potent antioxidant. (Indian J Exp Biol 1996 Jun;34(6):523-6) Administration of extract from Bacopa monnieri, to children with mental retardation, was reported to significantly improve short-term and long-term memory. (Ann Acad Med Singapore 2000 Jan;29(1):37-41)
Modern research has validated the Ayurvedic claims indicating that Bacopa monniera can improve performance in various learning situations. (J Ethnopharmacol 1982 Mar;5(2):205-14)
Results suggest that Bacopa, like the anti-Parkinson drug deprenyl, exhibits a significant antioxidant effect after subchronic administration which, unlike the latter, extends to the hippocampus as well. The results suggest that the increase in oxidative free radical scavenging activity by BM may explain, at least in part, the cognition- facilitating action of Bacopa, recorded in Ayurvedic texts, and demonstrated experimentally and clinically. (Phytother Res 2000 May;14(3):174-9)
Bacopa has additional effects on both bowel disturbance and allergy. Among 169 patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), standard therapy, a compound Ayurvedic preparation containing Bacopa monniere, along with a matching placebo were given in a double blind randomised trial for 6 wk. The Ayurvedic preparation in 57 patients was found effective in 64. 9 per cent, while standard therapy (60 patients) was useful in 78.3 per cent. Patients on placebo (52 patients) showed improvement in 32.7 per cent only. Ayurvedic therapy was particularly beneficial in diarrhoea predominant form as compared to placebo. (Indian J Med Res 1989 Dec;90:496-503)
Bacopa has also been shown to stabilize mast cells, an anti-allergy mnechanism of action not unlike that of many conventional anti-allergy medications. Extracts of Bacopa monnieri were tested for mast cell stabilising effect. Theyxhibited potent activity comparable to disodium cromoglycate, a known mast cell stabiliser. (Fitoterapia 2001 Mar;72(3):284-5)
Based on my recommendation, North American Pharmacal is now compounding Bacopa Monniera with their very effective Cortiguard formula.
QUESTION: All descriptions written about type AB are true for myself except I am not prone to infections. When I was young I had trouble with tonsil and gland infections and prior to my 30's I had the occassional cold or flu. For the last 20 years I can count the number of colds, flu's and other infections on one hand. Even when my husband gets the flu, I don't. I'm not a health nut either. Why don't I fit this part of the AB profile?
ANSWER: In general, type ABs are at a disadvantage due to the fact that they lack both anti-A and anti-B antibodies. These antibodies are often used as a preliminary line of defense against many microbes (which themselves can have ABO blood type antigens; a fact which clearly illustrates the limitation of using the term 'blood type' to describe them.)
However, it appears that nature has provided ABs with a substitute method of achieving immune competency: They have the highest levels of Natural Killer (NK) cell activity of the ABO blood groups (1)
Natural Killer (NK) cells, a small subset of peripheral blood lymphocytes, mediate a variety of functions that are important in human health and disease. In addition to their role in control of metastasis and infections, NK cells participate in immunoregulation, red blood cell production, reproduction and neuroendocrine interactions. Defective or absent NK cell activity is associated with a spectrum of human diseases.
Methods of keeping your NK cells happy read like a basic textbook of naturopathic medicine: Fresh air, sunlight, exercise, light diet, low stress.
Type AB's who are prone to low resiatnce can invesitgate the Traditional Chinese herb Astragalus, which has quite a bit of research supporting its use in enhancing NK cell activity. (2)
1.) Lasek W, Jakobisiak M, Plodziszewska M, Gorecki D. The influence of ABO blood groups, Rh antigens and cigarette smoking on the level of NK activity in normal population. Arch Immunol Ther Exp (Warsz). 1989;37(3-4):287-94.
2.) Zee-Cheng RK. Shi-quan-da-bu-tang (ten significant tonic decoction), SQT. A potent Chinese biological response modifier in cancer immunotherapy, potentiation and detoxification of anticancer drugs. Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol. 1992 Nov;14(9):725-36. Review.
STUDY: Case-control study of ovarian cancer in Japan.
JOURNAL: Cancer 1984 Jun 15;53(12):2746-52
AUTHORS: Mori M, Kiyosawa H, Miyake H.
ABSTRACT: A case-control study of 80 women with ovarian epithelial carcinoma and 160 individually age-matched controls were conducted to assess various factors associated with the incidence of ovarian cancer in Hokkaido, Japan. Among the characteristics studied, the following factors were significantly greater in the cases than in the controls: (1) blood group A; (2) never married or married late in life; (3) more frequent surgery for retroflexion of the uterus; (4) less use of contraceptive appliances; and (5) less daily use of cosmetics. It was inferred from these observations that ovarian cancer patients had a genetic predisposition and dysfunctional ovaries. Gonadal dysfunction among ovarian cancer patients presumably explained not only altered personality and behavior patterns, but also facilitated the pituitary gonadotropin activity which has been suggested as increasing the incidence of the disease experimentally.
COMMENTARY: I can understand women who are type A becoming depressed by this sort of finding, but knowing that you may be liable to a particular cancer by virtue of your blood type is better than remaining in the dark.
Hopefully the use of the type A diet (with its emphasis on soy, peanut and helix pomatia snail lectins, plant anti-oxidants, green tea, polyamine-blocking foods and overall low-fat orientation) can help to prevent this type of problem from developing in the first place.
Have you found any specific correlations between migraine headaches and a specific abo type(s)? Also, could you elaborate some on ABO susceptibility to certain neuro-psychiatric disorders? I looked up the references you listed, then came to a "virtual" dead end. By the way, being a holistic nurse, I am impressed with your true interest and passion evident in your work. I have read your book, have offered the information to just about any client open to the theory. Makes sense to me. I definitely feel more energy when I stick to my A-type diet....more tired and unfocused when I succumb to the ever prevalent calling of wheat products. Need any help as far as employment? No kidding! Keep up the great work. It is amazing to me that you and you're dad's theory has taken so long to catch on! Most of my associates are at least thinking about the logic of it all. Thanks!
All blood types get migraines, but get them for different reasons (usually the results of the wrong diet increasing the levels of polyamines -toxins- causing activation of the immune system, resulting in inflamation). This is probably why even generalized "bowel detox" such as enemas and colonics, have been historically successful for migraines. However, eating right for your type is a less invasive labor intensive way to get the same results.
Much of my next book will be looking at the effects of the blood type diet on mental-emotional health, but suffice it to say, there will be a similar long road to hoe with the skeptics; most experts are unaware of the studies documenting behavioral differences between the ABO types, and would not expect the explanation to lie in the realm of genetics, but will rather expect it to be the result of ascribed characteristics (ala Japan), hence having "no scientific basis."
Dr. Morton Feldman, a well-regarded writer for the prestigious Townsend Letter for Doctors, has written a glowing review of the Complete Blood Type Encyclopedia.
Among his many positive comments:
"We have in this D’Adamo encyclopedia a good and serviceable desk reference."
"It is anticipated that the book will be applied for the next 30 years as a reference by health professionals and the public alike whenever clinical conditions are in need of treatment and a more individualized approach is required."
To read the full review, follow this link.
QUESTION: I have a staph infection in my prostate. Antibiotics have helped, but my last test showed I still have a light case. I have been following your diet regimen for type A, and it has helped in many ways. Thank you. Any suggestions for the infection?
ANSWER: You may want to think about using two supplements until the infection is finally rooted out of your system:
DEFLECT A: This formula uses a variety of sugars as 'anti-adhesion' molecules which can inhibit the attachment of microbes to the membranes of the ducts lining the prostate. No attachment, no infection. This therapy has been shown to be effective in infections of the genito-urinary tract (it is the basis by which cranberry juice inhibits bladder infections).
STINGING NETTLE ROOT: Long used in Europe to assist in maintining the health of the prostate, Nettle also has substantial anti-microbial properties. (1)
Both products are available from North American Pharmacal (link at top of page) The
nettle root product is called 'UDA Plus.'
If another course of antibiotics is needed, consider taking some pineapple enzyme tablets (bromelain) concurrently with them. Evidence suggests that bromelain contains a component called 'spreading factor' which enhances antibiotic distribution.
1. Veliky A, Latta RK. Antimicrobial activity of cultured plant cells and tissues. Lloydia. 1974 Dec;37(4):611-20.
I have been following your diet for a month. I am ABO group A. My liver results are off the wall. Ferritin is 875.9; WBC 6.0, RBC 4.59, HGB 15.5, HCT 46.1, MCV 100.4, MCH 33.8, MCHC 33.6, RDW 13.6, PLT CT 165., MPV 9.2. My Hepatitis Panel was positive with both Hep B then Hep A 3 yrs ago.
Do you have any suggestions to help this disease. I have been taking milk thistle but was told I need interferon. Please Help!
Although your ferritin is quite high, many of the other hematological parameters are only slightly elevated above normal. As I have written in ER4YT, group A does seem to have a weakness with regard to diseases of the liver and indeed milk thistle (Silymarin) is a wise choice. Several companies are now marketing a lipid soluable form (usually Silymarin bonded to a liposome) which can greatly enhance absorption, as it is to a degree specific to liver tissue.
Obviously following the A diet will be of good service. The low protein aspects of the A plan are in step with conventional management of liver disease, and the avoidance of harmful lectins will ease much of the burden on the organ's bile ducts, which are very sensitive to them.
One herbal which is well indicated for liver illness requiring Interferon therapy (many interferons are in of themselves lectins) is licorice (Glycyrhizza glabra or Glycyrhizza uralensis). Japanese studies have shown the the concurrent administration of licorice with interferon therapy is about 60% effective in inducing remission and improving liver parameters. While this might not appear so impressive, interferon therapy by itself is only about 20% effective. Licorice can be somewhat toxic (it can elevate blood pressure or cause fluid retention) so you should consult with a physician skilled in its use. The
There are several other herbals which have been used effectively in liver disfunction, and which are generally tolerable by type A's. Catechu (Gambir), Phylanthus amara and Eclipta alba are used in Ayurvedic or Traditional Chinese Medicine and each has shown some benefit. I have used both Catechu and Eclipta in my practice with good results.
With the increase in your ferritin levels, I would also advise against taking supplemental vitamin C. The American Association Of Naturopathic Physicians may be able to help you locate a naturopathic physician in your area.
STUDY: Cigarette smoke extracts delay wound healing in the stomach: involvement of polyamine synthesis.
JOURNAL: Exp Biol Med (Maywood) 2002 Feb;227(2):114-24
AUTHORS: Shin VY, Liu ES, Koo MW, Wang JY, Matsui H, Cho CH.
ABSTRACT: The association between cigarette smoking and peptic ulcer diseases has been well established. Ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) is crucial for the gastroprotective and mucosal growth promoting effects in gastric ulcer healing. The aim of this study is to elucidate the possible mechanism of how inhibition of ODC activity is involved in the delay of ulcer healing, if any, by cigarette smoke extracts. Cigatette smoke extract delayed cell migration and decreased cell proliferation, which were accompanied with a reduction in ODC activity. In conclusion, cigatette smoke extract significantly delayed ulcer healing as a result of reduction in cell proliferation and cell migration. All these effects are, in part, related to the reduction of polyamine synthesis.
COMMENTARY: As I have written about in both Live Right 4 Your Type and The Complete Blood Type Encyclopedia, polyamines (protein molecules which help regulate cell growth) are increasingly being viewed as a method of of potentially controlling malignancy (for example in prostate cancer). On the other side of t he coin, since they have a profound influence on cell growth, polymaines are also inportant for wound repair and tissue growth. Thus, the health issue of polyamine chemistry is one of balance: Try to lower of eliminate polyamine synthesis in cancer, increase it in wound healing.
Many dietary lectins are known to have an influence on polyamine levels.
In the case of stomach damage due to the effects of cigatette smoke, increasing polyamine levels may help improve ulcer healing. Using the corret blood group diet for your type will help to properly balance polyamine levels, but individuals with peptic ulcer disease who smoke may well want to investigate methods of increasing polyamine synthesis, such as the use of the Chinese herb Schizanda which has been shown to enhance polyamine synthesis.
I have a common dry eye problem. It is called Occular Rosacea.. The oil glands in my eyes are clogged, thereby producing tears without lipids that easily evaporate. Although, many people suffer from this, there is no known cure nor is there any understanding of what causes it by the medical community. I have a sneaking suspicion that diet is somehow a culprit. I am an A+ type. Can you shed any light on my problem or offer some guidance. Thanks.
Checking through patient records, there appears to be about a 2:1 rate of rosacea in type A over the other blood groups. Perhaps this represents some element of "tolerance" on the part of type A over the other types with regard for the micro-organisms which tend to be the cause of the problem. In the eye, probably the most common manifestation of rosacea is the presence of chalazia, styes in the eyelids. And when these occur in multiple recurrent forms, very often there is an underlying rosacea. Styes are caused by blocked oil glands in the eyelids. Other symptoms of occular rosacea include oily and crusty eyelids, red rimmed eyes, conjunctivitis as well as burning and tearing.
One association seems to be that rosacea sufferers tend to have low levels of lactoferrin, an iron-binding protein found in tears and other body secretions which has a supressive effect on bacteria and their ability to penetrate the body's barrier defenses; which in your case would be the tears themselves. Lactoferrin is associated estrogen: high levels enhance its activity, low levels suppress it. This explains perhaps why many post menopausal women suffer from dry eye syndrome. There are commercial supplements of lactoferrin, though they are nothing but encapsulated forms of the milk constituents whey and colostrum, both of which can be obtained from a variety of sources. Although dairy can be problematic for type A, these fractions are usually well-tolerated. If you find they are aggravating a mucous condition, you can try taking them with a rennett tablet (remember "Junkett"?) Following the type A diet should be a major help as there are studies indicating that vegetarian diets and fasting seem to have a positive effect on increasing lactoferrin.
Can Type O's ingest too much zinc?
Sure. Anyone can ingest too much zinc. This can be a problem when taking a multitude of different supplements, all containing "safe" amounts of zinc, but which together amount to a toxic dose. In general, one should avoid taking more than 15 mg daily unless under the supervision of a trained professional. Zinc has very paradoxical effects in the body: small amounts over a short period of time enhance immunity, whereas larger amounts over longer periods suppress immunity.
I am a 45 year old woman in good health, taking no prescription drugs, following your diet for AB types. My principal health concern is preventing cancer. I have had one melanoma removed (from my shoulder), and am being monitored by an ocular oncologist for suspicion of melanoma in my eyes. Two close relatives, an aunt and a young cousin (35) died recently of non-Hodgkins lymphoma, and I read that melanoma sufferers are more likely to develop other types of cancer. This is my question: Is enough known about the AB blood type to feel confident that the diet that you recommend is the best one for preventing cancer.
I think so. Since melanoma is one of the few cancers known to have some response to immunotherapy. This is because, unlike most cancers, melanoma cells tend to look a lot like each other. Hence an antibody synthesized by the immune system has some chance of working. I'd also pursue investigating immune enhancing polysaccharides like those found in larch, Echinacea or Astragalus. These tend to enhance NK (natural killer) cell activity, which is your first line of defence.
QUESTION: In ER4YT, you mentioned several vaccines and their effects on different blood types. You did not mention the BCG, however. As this is obligatory in France where I live, I would like to have some advice on its effects, in particular on Type O. Many thanks for your help.
ANSWER: BCG Vaccine is a preparation consisting of attenuated human tubercle bacilli that is used for immunization against tuberculosis. BCG vaccine (bacille Calmette-Guérin) is a preparation of live, but markedly weakened, tuberculosis organisms that are used as a vaccine to give protection against the harmful, natural form of the disease. In countries where tuberculosis is still common, the BCG is given in infancy. (The BCG is not commonly used in the United States.) A skin test is carried out first to show if a natural immunity has been acquired. The BCG vaccine was first used by Leon Calmette and Camille Guérin.
Though no specific studies exist examining the rate of vaccine reactions to BCG as per ABO blood group, there are a few surprising associations:
BCG vaccination apparently lowers the levels of anti-blood type antibodies (anti-A and anti- that may explain why prolonged use of BCG in cancer patients often has the paradoxical effect of suppressing their immune response. (1) Another study showed that many surgical patients (typically bowel surgery patients) had higher levels of anti-blood type antibodies, which the researchers thought were the result of the stimulation of their immune-system caused by resorption of their intestinal mucus, containing compounds identical to the blood group substances A and B, or by resorption of similar bacterial antigens. The authors hypothesized that these patients would not need BCG stimulation, since it did essentially the same thing. (2)
Finally, it is known that the response of certain bladder cancers to BCG vaccine therapy is in part related to their ability to secrete ABO blood type antigens (3).
The most common side effect is asthma, which is interesting in light of the fact that asthma itself is associated with higher levels of anti-blood type antibodies in type O-non secretor individuals. (4)
1. Helander I, Nordman E, Hakkinen IP, Toivanen A. Prolonged BCG treatment of melanoma: does it suppress the immune capacity? Br J Dermatol 1979 Oct;101(4):421-7
2. Peter H, Peter H, Werny D[Hemagglutinins and immunoglobulins in surgical patients and blood donors]. Med Klin 1978 Apr 28;73(17):615-20
3. Sanders H, McCue P, Graham SD Jr ABO(H) antigens and beta-2 microglobulin in transitional cell carcinoma. Predictors of response to intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guerin. . Cancer 1991 Jun 15;67(12):3024-8
4. Kauffmann F, Frette C, Pham QT, Nafissi S, Bertrand JP, Oriol R Associations of blood group-related antigens to FEV1, wheezing, and asthma. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 1996 Jan;153(1):76-82
QUESTION: You've prohibited type O's from using aloe vera preparations, but I've not read anything about the other blood types. I'm interested in taking a supplement containing polysaccharides from aloe vera (I'm type A). Would that be OK for me?
ANSWER: A recent article reported new research on two lectins purified from the leaf pulp of Aloe vera L. (Aloctin I and Aloctin II). Though both lectins were significant hemmagglutinins, Aloctin II's agglutinating effects were inhibited by N-acetyl-D-galactosamine (the blood group A antigen). Thus it appears that a second lectin in Aloe may be blood group A specific.
So, if you are blood type A should you avoid Aloe? Although the lectin was type A specific, it only agglutinated type A red blood cells at fairly high doses. Thus, I'd recommend type A's keep their use of aloe products to topicals and pass on the internal forms.
Akev N, Can A. Separation and some properties of Aloe vera L. leaf pulp lectins. Phytother Res 1999 Sep;13(6):489-93 Related Articles, Books
QUESTION: I am a Powerlifter at the U.S. Naval Academy and need to continually put on muscle in order to succeed. Should I eat a gram of protein for every pound of body weight as is often suggested? Also, should I throw out my whey protein powder and buy Soy Protein instead? I am about 9% body fat, 165lbs and 21 years old if this matters at all. I am really confused about all the different information. I would greatly appreciate a response that will lead me in the right direction.
ANSWER: In my experience with individuals seeking to put on muscle mass, I have seen consistent results obtained by combining the blood type diet with a diet called the ABCDE diet (Anabolic Burst Cycling of Diet and Exercise) pioneered by Torbjorn Akerfeldt. The principle behind the ABCDE diet is that systematically overeating is anabolic (maybe even more so than weight lifting) because of the hormone response that overeating promotes. However, since the body will eventually accomodate to anything, this anabolic response to overeating will usually diminish with time. So, in order to maximize the bodies capabilities, it is critical to consistently cycle between a higher and lower calorie diet. In a simplified sense, it is the relative change in the amount of calories that promotes the best metabolic results. A very generalized way to begin this approach to eating is to eat 4000 calories a day for 14 days, and then starting on the 15th day, eat about 1800 calories a day for the next 14 days. On the 29th day return to eating 4000 calories a day for another 14 days. For more information on this approach to using food to change your body composition, I recommend contacting a magazine called Muscle Media 2000. They published 4 articles on the ABCDE diet in 1997.
QUESTION: My type AB husband, diagnosed with prostatitis, takes saw palmeto and lycopene supplements to support prostate health in addition to all the blood-type supplements recommended for his type. What else can he do?
ANSWER: One of the best natural remedies for prostate health is the root (rhizome) of the stinging nettle (Urtica dioica).(1) Urtica contains both anti-DHT (DHT is the 'bad' testosterone') elements and an anti-microbial, anti-bacterial lectin, known as Urtica Dioica Aggutinin (UDA). Try not to confuse the rhizome preparations with the much more popular leaf forms, which are apopular remedy for hay fever.
1.Konrad L, Muller HH, Lenz C, Laubinger H, Aumuller G, Lichius JJ. Antiproliferative effect on human prostate cancer cells by a stinging nettle root (Urtica dioica) extract. Planta Med. 2000 Feb;66(1):44-7.
QUESTION: Is taking a supplement that contains Garcinia combogia okay for Type A? I looked it up and all I could find is that it is a purple sweet fruit which is also known as the Malabar Tamarind.
ANSWER: A scan of the relevant lectin literature disclosed no lectin like activity in the plant (which I've also verified in my own lab), but the bigger question may be efficacy more than toxicity.
Hydroxycitric acid, the active ingredient in the herbal compound Garcinia cambogia, inhibits the extramitochondrial enzyme adenosine triphosphate-citrate (pro-3S)-lyase. As an enzyme that may play an essential role in de novo lipogenesis inhibition, Garcinia is claimed to lower body weight and reduce fat mass in humans. However, Garcinia cambogia failed to produce significant weight loss and fat mass loss beyond that observed with placebo. (1) A second study showed no difference in the short-term rate of fat oxidation in the fasting state during rest or moderate exercise, with doses likely to be achieved in humans while subjects maintain a typical Western diet; approximately 30-35% total calories as fat. (2)
Having used the product in years past in several patients, I've since stopped employing it as it appears that the reputed action of the herb is minimal at best.
1. Heymsfield SB, Allison DB, Vasselli JR, Pietrobelli A, Greenfield D, Nunez C. Garcinia cambogia (hydroxycitric acid) as a potential antiobesity agent: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 1998 Nov 11;280(18):1596-600.
2. McCarty MF. Utility of metformin as an adjunct to hydroxycitrate/carnitine for reducing body fat in diabetics. Med Hypotheses. 1998 Nov;51(5):399-403.
QUESTION: Dear Dr. D'Adamo, what is your opinion on spray vitamins? Are they better absorbed than ordinary tablets? Thanks for your interest.
ANSWER: In 1998, the FDA issued a warning letter citing manufacturing violations and stating that it was illegal for any company to market "spray vitamins" as dietary supplements. Spray vitamins (atomizing vitamins in solution and typically spraying them into the nasal cavity) violate the Dietary Supplement Act.
In one instance the labeling stated that "Vitamin B12 is best absorbed through the tongue membranes or injection because if it is ingested, gastrointestinal juices will break down the vitamin, thereby destroying its value. Just one spray under the tongue enables the vitamins, including over 100% of the recommended daily value (DV) of vitamin B 12 to be absorbed into the body efficiently."
The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) became law on October 25, 1994. Section 201(fl) of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (Act) defines the term "dietary supplement" to be a product that is formulated with vitamins, minerals, or a botanical that is intended for ingestion in tablet, capsule, powder, softgel, gelcap, or liquid form. Consequently, any spray vitamin which is not intended for ingestion cannot meet the definition of "dietary supplement."
This is just incorrect, especially since the type of B12 used in the formula is the very inexpensive cyanocobalamine form versus the biologically active methylcobalamine form.
The body is a wonderful mechanism, which does not typically require any esoteric delivery system. Remember your digestive tract is designed for assimilation, not your nose.
QUESTION: 1.) Does the diet help with autism? I have an 8yr old son with Asperger's Syndrome and a very skeptical wife. Many parents are having success with a no gluten no casein diet. Some report a succuss rate of 80%. His mother refuses to try it even though wheat and milk is 90% of his diet. 2.) My 4 1/2 year old son has been diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome. I believe he is type B, from what I was told last time he was in hospital for a test (I am type O+, and my husband is AB+). Some works on autism recommend eliminating casein and gluten from the diet. Is casein present in most dairy products or just some of them? What kinds of adjustments could I make to my son's type B diet for optimal results?
ANSWER: Asperger's Syndrome is considered a 'high functioning' form of Pervasive Developmental Disorder, a constellation of symptoms usually refered to as 'Autism.' Asperger's Syndrome is characterized by impairments in social interactions and the presence of restricted interests and activities, with no clinically significant general delay in language, and testing in the range of average to above average intelligence.
Autism is a mysterious mental disease that effects 400,000 children in the U.S. alone. It develops insidiously in toddlers after deceptively normal infancies, free of the developmental abnormalities that are early and obvious hallmarks of severe mental retardation or cerebral palsy. Around the age of 18 months or two years, developmental milestones are not attained. Normal communication between parents and children lapses. Autistic children often fail to make eye contact and their speech is rudimentary. They may be prone to explosive tantrums or engage in repetitive mechanical behavior, like rocking or shutting off all the lights in a room again and again. While autism varies in severity, its key features are improper sensory integration, lack of subtlety of emotional expression ("flatness" can quickly give way to agitation) and limited communication ability. Autistic children seldom are able to lead independent lives without heavy remedial education, dedicated parental care and sometimes institutionalization and drugs.
No effective drug therapy for autism exists. Medications "take the edge off" symptoms, and parents fervently adhere to various programs of "behavior modification," "sensory integration," and the like, with some encouraging results.(1)
One abstract on secretin and autism reported a study of three children with autism and gastro-intestinal problems. The study indicated that after secretin infusion, gastro-intestinal function improved, and the children became more sociable and communicative. Over one half million people in the U.S. today have autism or some form of pervasive developmental disorder. Its prevalence rate makes autism one of the most common developmental disabilities.
There has been some positive feedback on the efficacy of the blood type diet in children with autism. Since the type ER4YT diet limits several dietary lectins thought to interfere with secretin and cholecystokinin, it is not too far-fetched to consider that improvement in these children may have actually resulted from enhancement of their own secretin metabolism through the avoidance of secretin-blocking lectins. It is my opinion that the reason the Blood Type Diets work well in autism via the same rationale why certain health authorities seem to feel that a gluten free diet is avisable as well, although this has been questioned as to its efficacy. (2) Perhaps it is the blood type specificity of the lectins (not accounted for in basic gluten free diets) which has made the link to celiac disease and gluten rather weak.
I've used the Ayurvedic herb Bacopa (sometimes called 'Brahmi') in several cases of autism with promising effect. Bacopa is an Ayurvedic medicine used in India for memory enhancement, epilepsy, insomnia, and as a mild sedative. This herb commonly grows in marshy areas throughout India. Some studies have shown that bacopa has antioxidant effects (Tripathi 1996), while a study on rats showed bacopa administration strikingly improves learning skills (3).
1.) Tanguay PE. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 2000 Sep;39(9):1079-95 Pervasive developmental disorders: a 10-year review.
2.) Risebro B. [Gluten-free diet in infantile autism]. Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 1991 Jun 10;111(15):1885-6. Norwegian
3.) Lodha R, Bagga A. Traditional Indian systems of medicine. Ann Acad Med Singapore. 2000 Jan;29(1):37-41.
4.) Ho HZ, Glahn TJ, Ho JC. The fragile-X syndrome. Dev Med Child Neurol. 1988 Apr;30(2):257-61. Review.
QUESTION: I've just read your book from cover to cover and have started the diet immediately. I'm just wondering about kangaroo meat as part of the type O diet. I live in Australia where this very lean and delicious meat is available cheaply at most grocery stores and butchers. I'm assuming it's rather like venison and therefore beneficial. Have you ever tested it?
ANSWER: Sorry, I've never tested kangaroo meat; however, I have no reason to believe it would be problematic for O's. Remember, O's typically have the digestive ability to utilize animal protein well, so Kangaroo meat should be fine.
STUDY: The Act Of Creation
JOURNAL: Picador Press, 1969
AUTHORS: Arthur Koestler
ABSTRACT: "One of our conspicuous handicaps is the conservatism of the scientific mind in its corporate aspect. The collective matrix of a science at a given time is determined by a kind of establishment, which includes universities, learned societies, and, more recently, the editorial offices of technical journals and the glossy magazines and newspapers. Like other establishments, they are consciously or unconsciously bent on preserving the status quo -partly because unorthodox innovations are a threat to their authority, but also because of the deeper fear that their laboriously erected intellectual edifice might collapse under the impact. Corporate orthodoxy has been the curse of genius from Aristarchus to Galileo, to Harvey, Darwin, and Freud; throughout the centuries its phalanxes have sturdily defended habit against originality. "
I am a Type O. I understand and agree with your scientific reasoning that led to the development of the diet. I suffer from several of the ailments that you mention in your book that Type Os contract: severe food allergies or intolerances, H. pylori in my stomach, and the digestive problems you pointed out that are common for Type Os. I have faithfully followed the Type O diet for many months, but I have not improved at all. What could I be doing that is incorrect?
H. pylori can be very difficult to erradicate. You might want to look into using some bladderwrack (fucose sugar inhibits bacterial attachment), bismuth subnitrate (basically Pepto-Bismol) or even antibiotics, to allow you to get a leg up on the critter and give the diet some room to maneuver. Fresh ginger juice also helps.