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I started the Blood Type Diet ten months ago, and so far I've been on five different versions of it. That's an average of one new diet every two months!
The first two were just a couple of false starts. I had never known what my blood type was, but after reading the “textbook cases” in Eat Right 4 Your Type, I guessed that I was a B. Several of my health problems are similar to common B problems, and I do better with milk products than without them. I followed the B diet for five days before having my blood type tested.
I turned out to be an A. I was actually delighted, because my husband and I had been vegetarians for many years, and I knew that it would be easy to plan A-compliant vegetarian meals. Since 80 to 85% of people are secretors, I began following the A secretor diet. I also sent off my saliva sample for secretor testing, and started making lists of foods that A secretors can eat but A non-secretors cannot, and vice-versa.
Based on my food lists, I decided that I really wanted to be a non-secretor – and two weeks later, I got my wish! I cut corn and wheat out of my diet, and gleefully resumed eating sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and bananas. Then (other than adding a small daily serving of salmon or turkey in February) I made no major changes to my diet for seven whole months!
By then, I looked and felt better in a lot of little ways, but there hadn’t been any major miracles – so I began to think about changing my diet again.
I have been told that my father was an O, which means that I presumably have a recessive O gene. I decided to see if avoiding the foods that O non-secretors are supposed to avoid (in addition to the A non-secretor Avoids) would make a difference. But a month later, things were still about the same, so it was clearly time for yet another change!
Several people on this site's forums say that they do better when they eat little or no grain – easy on the rice, bread, pasta, and baked goodies. Since most of these people are O’s (like my paternal gene), I thought it might be worth my while to try going grain-free. So I did, completely and immediately. That lasted four days!
No, I wasn’t desperate to eat grains again. I was actually getting along just fine. What happened was, I came to my senses – with a little help. I read a post on this site’s forums by “Whimsical” (alias blogger Kate Whimster), who has been on the BTD since 2002. She said in part, “…the best results that I've had with the BTD have come literally YEARS after I started.”
I knew that Kate was right. As my nutritionist often points out, it took me many years to develop my various problems, so I can’t expect to clear them up overnight. Her rule of thumb is one month of recovery time for every year that the problem has persisted.
This is just a guess, but I suspect that most of the people who see dramatic improvement after only a few days or weeks on the BTD are those whose previous diet was all wrong for them (so the BTD is a major breakthrough) and/or people with serious health problems (so a 10% improvement is huge).
For me, 10% is enough to show that I’m headed in the right direction. So I’m back on the basic A non-secretor diet, and for the past couple of weeks, my mantra has been “Give it time …. Give it time …. Give it time ….”
By the way, the least appealing of my five diets was the B diet, mainly because most of my favorite beans were off-limits. That should have told me something!