Archives for: November 2006, 03
Three (more) cheers for Peter D'Adamo, N.D., for his book on arthritis, published in 2004 but just acquired by yours truly. Like all of Dr. D'Adamo's books, it breaks ground.
Those of us who support his work, who have come to put great stock in his nutritional and fitness guidelines for our own and others' blood types and have seen the phenomenal results, are at pains to accept wholesale much of what passes for Medicine or "good nutrition", particularly amongst published consumer literature. I, for one, find myself reading medical texts and nutrition books through a Blood Type filter, because I believe in genetic endowment and markers and their relatively predictable and variously-mediated causes and routes of disease.
I had picked up The Arthritis Cure (revised edition) by Jason Theodosakis MD, just weeks before D'Adamo's book arrived. I can appreciate Dr. Theosodakis' training, experience, and even his findings. But I confess to having scanned it with a gnawing dissatisfaction, knowing that something crucial was missing -- something that would, among other benefits, put it all together for me personally, or at least point me to the one or two paragraphs in the book that would individualize his program. Likewise the myriads of other books by MD's, homeopaths, herbalists, et al., on the subject.
Case in point: Everyone admits that there are over 100 "different arthritides", including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and syndromes, infectious, psoriatic, etc. Why does one person succumb to one type and another to another type of arthritis? Why does one person obtain relief from a course of chondroitin sulfate while another deteriorates? To which type is John Doe prone and why? Can he head it off in advance? Can he treat it successfully? This is "where the rubber meets the road": Prevention, Palliation, Cure, and overall good health. One wanders away from these other books sort of stunned: "OK, but which do I have? What do I do?" Many such readers give up on even attempting to understand and self-treat; in exasperation they default to the ineffective establishment and the pharmaceutical industry's risky and pricey products, thus adding their weight to the already massive public health burden. Having myself undergone the doctor-hopping/doctor-shopping process in younger days, until I landed upon those specialists who were truly equipped to diagnose my illnesses, I am loathe to play that game again,an all too prevalent American pastime. Thankfully, I am not experiencing intense or constant symptoms; I am not "laid up"; my concern isn't all that "urgent".
In Arthritis: Fight It With The Blood Type Diet, Dr. D'Adamo maps out the Arthritis territory (as he does that of several other conditions in their own respective books) in his "What's Your Blood Type-Arthritis Risk?" quiz at the front of the book. Immediately one encounters 11 risk factors common to all, and 9 risk factors unique to each of the 4 blood types! These 7-8 pages are easily worth the price of the entire book. But, as usual, Dr. D'Adamo goes on to clearly and simply present the dynamics of the disease, its diagnosis, the blood type connection, various treatments, and the Individualized Blood Type Plans for each type. I challenge the reader to find, anywhere else in the literature, a presentation of arthritis this cleanly harvested, sorted, and stacked for lay consumer-readability. It is both an elegant accomplishment and an eminently meaty read.
I read the B section right away, as that is my blood type. I learned how to skew my already-B-appropriate diet toward the sort of immune-boosting, inflammation-fighting, and detoxification-enhancing nutrients that can protect me from, and even reverse, B-type arthritic changes and symptoms. For type B, Dr. D'Adamo states that viral infections and autoimmune processes play a prominent role in the development of a particular type of joint disease and in the choice of appropriate prophylactic and treatment modalities. Upon reading this, I was immediately galvanized: A bout of viral gastroenteritis, just last month, indeed taught me the deep mysteries of vague medical words like: Prostration, Malaise, Weakness, and "aches and pains". Having "recovered" and returned to life-as-usual, I seem to have (suddenly!) manifested toxic souvenirs of that virus in a joint or two that I'm anxious to release. Once again, D'Adamo's assessment seems immediately spot-on (and it only cost me 12 bucks, in paperback).
Briefly, the other blood types acquire arthritides through different routes and manifest them differently. While your basic wear-&-tear osteoarthritis is common to all types, Type O inordinately suffers inflammatory reactions to grain lectins and experiences a high correlation of digestive, and depressive, disease with joint problems; Type A's stress reactions and susceptibility to vascular inflammation play key roles in the arthritic process; Type B, again, shows a propensity for viral/autoimmune routes; and Type AB, as usual, may be subject to both Type A and Type B susceptibilities.
FOUR different dietary rubrics, allowing for much individual variation within each blood type (rendering compliance easy),
FOUR different approaches to fitness/exercise, likewise, and
FOUR different lists of dietary supplements (helping the reader to navigate that overwhelming section of the health food store!)
...should make this book another of Peter D'Adamo's bestsellers. I assure you: My interest is less in touting Dr. D'Adamo per se than in facilitating a healthier world: Public understanding and safe self-treatment could relieve the medical/insurance establishment - and taxpayers - of much of this tremendous burden. It is estimated that 80% of the US population over age 50 suffers from some form of arthritis; think "Baby Boomers" and you'll cringe as we now storm the gates of Seniorhood!
Dr. D'Adamo has published similar blood type centered books on Cancer, Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes, Allergies, Fatigue, Menopause, and Aging, in addition to the blockbuster Eat Right 4 Your Type (1996) and its sequels:
Cook Right 4 Your Type (1999)
Live Right 4 Your Type (2001)
The Complete Blood Type Encyclopedia (2002)
Eat Right 4 Your Baby (2003) (covering reproductive health, pregnancy, postpartum and infancy)
You, too, can cut through the morass of "general" medical and health literature out there, make sense of your unique condition (as I've observed many doing via D'Adamo's teachings) and ride the wave of The New Medicine toward greater health and -- just as exciting -- deeper understanding of the human body, human history, and the rich variety of human life.