Archives for: August 2009
STUDY: Lectins in fruits having gastrointestinal activity: their participation in the hemagglutinating property of Escherichia coli O157:H7.
JOURNAL: Arch Med Res 2001 Jul-Aug;32(4):251-7
AUTHORS: Coutino-Rodriguez R, Hernandez-Cruz P, Giles-Rios H.
ABSTRACT: In fruits with therapeutic properties for antidiarrheal and laxative uses, the presence of lectins may be the bioactive properties that interfere with bacterial adhesion, thought to be competition for glycoside signal sites in the attachment. METHODS: This study identifies lectins in crude extracts from fruits such as Tamarindus indica (tamarind), Spontia vulgaris (plum), Psidium guava (guava), Mangifera indica (mango), Cydonia vulgaris (quince), and Crataegus mexicanus (tejocote). To verify the procedures, extracts from Ricinus communis (castor bean), Glycine max (soybean), Phaseolus vulgaris (beans), Vicia fava (fava bean), and Solanum tuberosum (potato) were used as controls for lectin activity. Both sources of lectins were analyzed to determine their participation in the host-parasite interaction, using as a model the hemagglutinating properties of Escherichia coli O157:H7 CONCLUSIONS: In summary, guava has a galactose-specific lectin that prevents adhesion of E. coli O157:H7 to red cells; this lectin is mediated by galactose. Prevention could also be due to their capacity of agglutinating E. coli by guava lectins.
Guava lectin is a galactose-specific lectin that may be useful in the prevention of E. coli infection of the gut. This may be particularly true and useful for group Os and group B non-secretors.
Many plant and animal lectins possess anti-microbial activity. For example, the lectins in Helix pomatia (Roman snail; escargot) and soybean are capable of agglutinating Baccilus anthracis ('Anthrax'). Griffonia simplicifolia lectin, from the bean used to produce the 5HT supplement, also used as a 'natural mood elevator' has also been shown to agglutinate B. anthracis, however it is uncertain whether the lectin is in the nutritional supplement.
1. Cole HB, Ezzell JW Jr, Keller KF, Doyle RJ. Differentiation of Bacillus anthracis and other Bacillus species by lectins. J Clin Microbiol. 1984 Jan;19(1):48-53.
2. Doyle, R.J., Keller, K.F. and Ezzell, J.W. (1985) In: Manual of Clinical Microbiology (Lennette, E.H., Balows, A., Hausler,W. J., Shadomy, H.J eds.), pp. 211-215 (Washington DC, USA).
QUESTION: I am a 43 year old 'O' who has noticed a great improvement of my arthritis (sacroillitis) in one week following your diet. For the past few months, I have been trying homeopathic medicine for the arthritis: glucosamine sulfate and GDU (protolytic enzymes). The glucosamine sulfate alone did not help at all. The two together helped a little for a short time but the effectiveness ended when I aggravated my back doing yard work a month ago. Your diet is the first thing that has really made a difference. Could my improvement be due to a combination of the medicine and your diet?
Although research documenting the positive effects of GLUCOSAMINE sulphate in treating arthritis are now beginning to appear with regularity, it is still far from a perfect therapy. In my own practice, I've found that about 60% of the arthritic patients get some form of symptomatic relief, though in most instances I have not seen much actual improvement in the joints themselves.
One aspect of glucosamine's recognized actions goes largely unnoticed, but is important with regard to the blood type diet theory. There is strong evidence, that glucosamine binds many food lectins, including WGA or wheat germ agglutinin. One of several well-designed studies documenting this also showed definite systemic uptake of wheat lectin, where it deposited on the walls of the blood vessels and lymph nodes.
Interestingly, the percentage goes DOWN in individuals who take CHONDROITIN sulphate in addition to glucosamine, as part of a regimen advocated in the bestseller "The Arthritis Cure." How could this be? One simple explanation is that chondroitin sulphate is actually comprised of long linked chains of the sugar acetylated galactosamine. You might remember that galactosamine is also the blood type A antigen. Thus, upon hydrolysis (acid breakdown) in the stomach, chondroitin becomes free A-antigen. This would not be to much of a problem in type A or AB, who recognize A antigen as "self," but could be a major problem in types O and B, who recognize A antigen as "non-self." In essence, taking chondroitin sulphate if you are either O or B is the chemical equivalent of giving yourself a bad blood transfusion.
QUESTION: I am concerned about soy and brain aging. I respect your educated experience, follow the A diet, and would extremely appreciate your comments.
ANSWER: Probably the most prominent research that's evoking these suspicions was the published work of Lon White at the Pacific Health Research Institute in Honolulu. Dr. White's ongoing study of 3,734 Hawaiian men over more than thirty years suggests that regular consumption of tofu over many years during their middle age was associated with early dementia or what Dr. White terms "accelerated brain aging." (1)
White's study was a long-range study charting the eating habits of the men since 1965. Final assessments were made of their cognitive functioning (e.g. thinking, learning, memory) along with tests for measuring brain atrophy or shrinkage. The stunning conclusion was that the men who ate two or more servings per week of tofu had steeper declines in brain functioning resulting in dementia.
Yet, despite the dramatic results of his work White recently told an interviewer, "I would be violating a cardinal rule if I said my data says you shouldn't eat tofu [or other soy foods]." While White believes his research is solid, the results, he says, "can't be turned into sweeping conclusions and the findings must be considered only preliminary." In addition this same study concluded that the men who ate tofu had a 65 percent lower incidence of prostate cancer than their anti-soy counterparts.
However, this has not stopped the soy bashers from having a field day.
Dr. White's study was of an observational nature in which the participants chose their lifestyles. He says his findings demand further investigation through more randomized trials. For example, study subjects (humans or animals) would be randomly divided and one group would be fed tofu and the other would not. The incidence of dementia in the two groups would then be measured and compared. A progression of such studies would either confirm or refute Dr. White's findings. He believes it will take at least ten years for a conclusion.
One could argue that if a causal effect existed between soy and Alzheimer's or increased brain aging, a greater incidence of Alzheimer's should exist in Japan and China, where tofu is eaten regularly. Also White's findings have not been duplicated in animal models. Though in general I am not fond of extrapolating conclusions from animal to humans, but in this case it may be well worth noting that since White concluded that the effects of soy isoflavone was on the synthesis of new DNA in the brain, its effects should be more marked in animals, who actually have more brain DNA synthesis active for a longer percentage of their lifespan than humans.
Finally, some researchers are questioning whether the link between tofu and brain aging may actually be another link between aluminum and brain atrophy, since although soy is low in aluminum, it does absorb quite a bit of it when cooked in aluminum cookware. The results of this preliminary investigation suggest that the aluminum concentration in soy products is increased slightly by cooking, particularly in an aluminum pot, and strongly (as much as 15-fold) by some methods of tofu production.
Conclusion: Given the current evidence, soy products should occupy an important place in the blood group A anti-cancer strategy plan.
Many of these concerns prompted the FDA to reject assertions from opponents of soy products attempting to block recommendations for the use of soy to control cholesterol, as was reported in the FDA Register:
"...d. Other. (Comment 20). ….FDA finds that this abstract does not provide a sufficient basis to evaluate the merits and weaknesses of this study. As such, it is not useful in evaluating the safety concerns at issue. Moreover, the report does not provide information on total soy intake or what variables were controlled in the analysis. If tofu or soy were implicated in Alzheimer's disease, its prevalence would be expected to be higher in Japan than in Hawaii, but White et al. (Ref. 115) found the prevalence of Alzheimer's disease was higher in Hawaii than in Japan. Therefore, FDA is not persuaded by the comment raising concerns about potential adverse effects of soy protein in dementia and brain atrophy in older persons.
1. White LR, Petrovitch H, Ross GW, Masaki K, Hardman J, Nelson J, Davis D, Markesbery W. Brain aging and midlife tofu consumption. J Am Coll Nutr. 2000 Apr;19(2):242-55.
QUESTION: On the subject of Indigenous Peoples: In the book you mentioned that most Native Americans are Type O. I was wondering (being a type O as well) about the use of corn, since many tribes have used that as a staple. Are there disorders common to those tribes linked to the use of corn, or do they have more tolerance than other type O's or are there ways we can use some forms of corn in our type O diets?
Corn is a sacred food in many native American cultures. Unfortunately, that doesn't make it any better of a health choice!
A good example of the effect in adding corn into the diet of these type O native Americans can be observed in the bone remains of the Indiana Mound Building cultures, since we can exactly trace the introduction of corn into the diet following a long prior existence as hunter-gatherers, by the marked change in the bone structures. Prior to corn becoming a staple, the bone show little arthritis or thinning, after corn is introduced, bone deformation begins, including major changes to the teeth structure and jaw (periodontal disease). (1) In addition, maize stimulates a very rapid and powerful glycemic response,(2) so it may be that the switch to a maize-based diet from prior hunter-gathering may have been responsible for the precipitous increase in diabetes.
If corn lectins are problematic for type O, they are even more of a serious hemagglutinin in those people who are type B or type AB. Interestingly, those red blood cells of those who were blood type A2B where clumped more aggressively than those who were A1B.(3) Also of interest was the observation that corn lectin continued to persist in even the purified oil. (4)
1. Gagne G. [Mouth diseases in a prehistoric agricultural population of northeastern North America]. J Can Dent Assoc 1993 Aug;59(8):686-92
2. Segal I, Joffe BI, Walker AR, Stavrou E, de Beer M, Naik I, Daya B. Glycaemic responses to different carbohydrate foods in healthy and diabetic blacks in Soweto.S Afr Med J 1991 Dec 7;80(11-12):546-9 Related Articles, Books, LinkOut
3. Prodanov P, Atanasova N. An anti-B lectin from Zea mays everta. Folia Haematol Int Mag Klin Morphol Blutforsch 1984;111(1):84-5
4.Klurfeld DM, Kritchevsky D. Isolation and quantitation of lectins from vegetable oils. Lipids 1987 Sep;22(9):667-8
QUESTION: My question concerns the wonderful encyclopedia. I looked up hayfever for my husband and there are 2 protocols:allergy and immune boosting I believe. I cannot find anywhere whether he should complete one protocol after the other or if he can take the supplements for both protocols at the same time. Many thanks. I would also like to day that I love the Cook Right 4 Your Type book- the recipes are fabulous and both my husband and I, different blood groups (I'm O, he's A) can find wonderful recipes to suit us both. Many thanks for this change in our diet!
ANSWER: The Encyclopedia was designed to offer guidance to a variety of possible health conditions, by 'mixing and matching' combinations of protocols to specific health problems. In general the first protocol listed under your type is premiere and the first substance listed under that protocol is the preferred starting point. Thus, it may be possible that the first compound listed in the Allergy Protocol would do the job and anything else would be overkill. However, if the problem is deep-seated or intractable, it may be necessary to use several protocols and quite a few substances.