Archives for: March 2010
I received an interesting question from my Facebook Page.
Thanks for providing an awesome guide in the Genotype Diet. Been practicing it as best I can for about 7 months and feel powerful. (I'm also doing good vitamins which is definitely part of the reason I feel really good.)
When I talk to people about the Genotype Diet and the benefits I've achieved from it, the main question I get is: Exactly what research has determined the genotypes, and the superfoods/toxic foods in the book? I can't begin to answer that question as I don't recall seeing it addressed in the book or on the website.
I'd love to learn more about the types of tests that you did to determine which people are in what genotypes as well as which foods are in which categories, per type.
This is a great question, but given that the best 'scientific answer' would be to show you the data tables and computer source code I can only try to explain a bit of the process. The problem with mass-market books is that you can only provide the upper-most level of information and a simplified version of that to boot, so I understand.
What I term the 'genotypes' (really 'epigenotypes' or 'morphotypes' but try to get a publisher to agree to use these words) are semi-synthetic constructs involving a stepwise statistical analysis of variation. They stem from the phenotypic (real world) characterizations reported for the ABO groups, Rh, secretor and additional biometric markers (D2-D4, fingerprints, etc). The idea was to look for pleiotropic (sympathetic) relationships between the multi-dimensional genotype/ phenotype data, especially if they are known to exert their effects through transgenerational actions. Using multivariate analysis we then look to see how the data separates or groups together. Since, with the exception of secretor, taster, Rh and ABO, we're looking at phenotype, I felt very comfortable including data from other, traditional typing systems (Ayurveda, TCM) which were also based of physical traits.
The base data includes virtually all published scientific tabular data on variations in physiology and pathology associated with these parameters, in addition to our own profiles of roughly 3,000+ additional people. At that point the data was filtered according to degrees of three basic metabolic 'biases': 'thriftiness' (metabolic compromise), 'receptorism' (immune tolerance) and 'reactance' (auto-immunity).
The genotypes are not 'perfect' typologies (every Explorer does not look or act exactly as every other Explorer) because we cannot possibly encapsulate all variation in everybody. Two families using the same set of blueprints will most likely build two different houses, due to differing financial constraints, choice of land plot, etc. Most of the time and given the tools we might encapsulate 30-50 percent of the data variation (principal components) in any one person and what we encapsulate in one might be slightly different than what we get for another. In statistical terms this is called 'multiple inclusion criteria' and it is a keynote of factor analysis or 'fuzzy logic.'
What results are six basic 'types' that with considerable tweaking encapsulate an acceptable amount of variation. Crunching the system into six types and cramming them into a hard-coded 'book' is much less effective than dynamically generating one-to-one diets in software, but it is still a pretty good approximation of some basic phenotypic variation and is more helpful than not.
Once we get here, the next step was to match the expected physical manifestations to a large database of foods that I've been collecting for the last two decades. For each food, this database contains about 300 individual values (gluten content, vitamin A, known allergen, etc.) At this point a second set of algorithms takes over and each food is evaluated constituent-wise based on a weighed value system much like a lawyer might argue a case in court. For example, evidence of developmental instability or constrained growth (differences between left/right sides of body, certain fingerprints, short leg length) might result in limiting foods that cause excess glycation.
If no negative attributes (for example, if the food contains a lectin or is known to encourage bacteria overgrowth, etc) is recorded, then the next step is to see if a case can be built for the food having any specialized benefit (for example, sardines might become a superfood if increasing the amount of RNA nucleotides is desirable; artichokes because they encourage probiotic growth in a strain of bacteria known to be good for a certain blood type). Lacking either of these elements, the food is simply labeled 'food' and considered more or less neutral.
In the simple case of rice versus rice milk it is most likely additional gums in the milk that are the issue. Certain gums amplify the effects of problematic proteins in other foods.
People also ask a lot about peanut oil versus peanuts or cherries versus cherry juice. Usually it is a difference between one form that contains some sort of problematic protein versus the other that doesn't. Also, occasionally in the Genotype diet (unlike the BTD) with complex foods, sometimes one nutrient influences the value of another which alters the value of the food.
Here are blogs of mine tagged as 'genotype diet.' You will see some elements of the process discussed in detail in many of these entries.
An interesting lecture on biomimicry got me thinking: With these new ways of analyzing intent by the study of naturally occurring shapes, functions and forms, we may be witnessing the 'naturopathization' of imagination in other arts and sciences.
"Now how does one know what is best? There needs to be a decent, well-developed, and endlessly exercised sense of taste for quality, of making strong choices between the excellent and the rest. An open mind but not an empty head: an intense willingness to see things and an intense willingness to make judgements about quality. "
-Edward Tufte ('Beautiful Evidence')
We need more of this 'comparative-reflective' thinking.
Someplace in the Talmud (a Jewish holy book) there is a commentary to the effect that God does not allow illness to exist until the solution or cure has first been created. What a marvelous take on time-space.
But how would we find that cure? We'd look to nature. To my way of thinking, over the course of his or her career, the good physician becomes increasingly comfortable visiting this invisible world, but only if fortified with a deep knowledge of the natural workings of things.
These excursions (really thought experiments) cannot but produce the most creative solutions to suffering, especially when guided by principles similar to those such as Tufte's (a statistician and sculptor-- not a physician-- again testifying to a certain conceptual universality.)
I'd paraphrase it as all knowing and all trusting, but also realizing that when we know very little, we should probably trust very little as well. Just contrast human intuition (usually a leap of faith) with animal intuition (genomic knowingness).
No single diet theory can address all aspects of our individuality, and only a fool would claim that soy, red meat, grains, coconut oil or anything else is universally good or universally bad for everyone.
For example, people who are blood type O appear to derive significant benefit from a diet including hormone and antibiotic free meats and poultry. There is a very basic physiologic reason for this: those with type O blood have almost three times the levels of an enzyme in their intestines called ‘intestinal alkaline phosphatase’ (IAP) . This enzyme performs two very important functions in the body. First, IAP splits dietary cholesterol into smaller fragments, allowing for their proper breakdown. Second, IAP enhances the absorption of calcium from the diet. Now you'd think this was cutting-edge, late-breaking news since it is obviously of tremendous interest in these nutrigenomic times. However, the first observations were made over four decades ago.
In addition to these two critical functions IAP is an important influence on the ability of the digestive tract to heal. Thus in most of our type O patients (44% of the population) we see a marked improvement in their IBS, colitis and Crohn’s disease when they increase their protein and cut back on their carbohydrates. 
Blood type B makes considerable amounts of IAP as well, but type A’s make very little. This probably explains why most studies that have looked at heart disease and blood type show a significantly higher rate of problems with blood type A individuals. These folks really should follow a Mediterranean-type diet.
Later studies showed that type A not only secreted almost no alkaline phosphatase in their intestines, but whatever little they did secrete was in and of itself inactivated by the presence of their own A antigen. 
Thus, we have here one of the strongest indications for the long term benefit of a low-fat diet in type A, both with regard to the susceptibility to cardiovascular disease, and (although not mentioned here) their additional susceptibility to cancer. Following the type A eating plan, with its emphasis on a healthy fats, low animal protein and the avoidance of foods high in phenylalanine, is the best method to maximize digestive efficiency in type As, lower their level of intestinal dysfunction, and to influence their susceptibility to cardiovascular disease.
Diabetes Metab. 2009 Sep;35(4):262-72. Epub 2009 May 5.
Intestinal microflora and metabolic diseases.
Serino M, Luche E, Chabo C, Amar J, Burcelin R.
Recent advances in molecular sequencing technology have allowed researchers to answer major questions regarding the relationship between a vast genomic diversity-such as found in the intestinal microflora-and host physiology. Over the past few years, it has been established that, in obesity, type 1 diabetes and Crohn's disease-to cite but a few-the intestinal microflora play a pathophysiological role and can induce, transfer or prevent the outcome of such conditions. A few of the molecular vectors responsible for this regulatory role have been determined. Some are related to control of the immune, vascular, endocrine and nervous systems located in the intestines. However, more important is the fact that the intestinal microflora-to-host relationship is bidirectional, with evidence of an impact of the host genome on the intestinal microbiome. This means that the ecology shared by the host and gut microflora should now be considered a new player that can be manipulated, using pharmacological and nutritional approaches, to control physiological functions and pathological outcomes. What now remains is to demonstrate the molecular connection between the intestinal microflora and metabolic diseases. We propose here that the proinflammatory lipopolysaccharides play a causal role in the onset of metabolic disorders.
Increasingly, studies are showing that changes in the microflora content of the digestive tract can be linked to metabolic illnesses, including type II (adult onset) diabetes and obesity. Blood group and secretor status play an important role in conditioning the overall characteristics of the digestive tract, including influencing the appearance and frequency of many strains of bacteria.
Pathol Biol (Paris). 2008 Jul;56(5):305-9. Epub 2008 Jan 30.
Role of gut microflora in the development of obesity and insulin resistance following high-fat diet feeding.
Cani PD, Delzenne NM, Amar J, Burcelin R.
A recent growing number of evidences shows that the increased prevalence of obesity and type 2 diabetes cannot be solely attributed to changes in the human genome, nutritional habits, or reduction of physical activity in our daily lives. Gut microflora may play an even more important role in maintaining human health. Recent data suggests that gut microbiota affects host nutritional metabolism with consequences on energy storage. Several mechanisms are proposed, linking events occurring in the colon and the regulation of energy metabolism. The present review discusses new findings that may explain how gut microbiota can be involved in the development of obesity and insulin resistance. Recently, studies have highlighted some key aspects of the mammalian host-gut microbial relationship. Gut microbiota could now be considered as a "microbial organ" localized within the host. Therefore, specific strategies aiming to regulate gut microbiota could be useful means to reduce the impact of high-fat feeding on the occurrence of metabolic diseases.
It has been known for quite a while that the colons of obese individuals are considerably longer than non-obese people. Now the idea is increasingly being advanced that obesity is, in part, related to greater "energy harvest." This would appear to throw the time-honored "just eat less and exercise more" argument right out the window and verify the common observance that many overweight people do not consume any greater amount of calories than many non-obese people.
J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2009 Mar;48(3):249-56.
Intestinal microbiota during infancy and its implications for obesity.
Reinhardt C, Reigstad CS, Bäckhed F.
Sahlgrenska Center for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Research/Wallenberg Laboratory, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Obesity is a worldwide epidemic, threatening both industrialized and developing countries, and is accompanied by a dramatic increase in obesity-related disorders, including type 2 diabetes mellitus, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Recent studies have shown that the gut microbial community (microbiota) is an environmental factor that regulates obesity by increasing energy harvest from the diet and by regulating peripheral metabolism. However, there are no data on how obesogenic microbiotas are established and whether this process is determined during infancy. The sterile fetus is born into a microbial world and is immediately colonized by numerous species originating from the surrounding ecosystems, especially the maternal vaginal and fecal microflora. This initial microbiota develops into a complex ecosystem in a predictable fashion determined by internal (eg, oxygen depletion) and external (eg, mode of birth, impact of environment, diet, hospitalization, application of antibiotics) factors. We discuss how the gut microbiota regulates obesity and how environmental factors that affect the establishment of the gut microbiota during infancy may contribute to obesity later in life.
A new book by Dr. Walter Crinnion entitled Clean, Green, & Lean is about to hit the bookshelves. I think Walter's work with detoxification is tremendously important, which is why I asked him lecture at IFHI 2005 and 2007. Last week I gave out advance copies to all my students and they just devoured it. This book is a great addition to any bookshelf and I was proud to have been asked to contribute the book's Foreword:
“Woe to the book you can read without constantly wondering about the author!” Romanian philosopher and essayist EM Cioran.
I think Ciroan makes a rarely recognized and unguarded point. People write books, and it is often the personality and skills of the author that make the difference between a series of accumulated platitudes and a cogent and effective call to action.
While most of the current popular books on cleansing and detoxification approach the subject from the perspective of fantasy and folklore, this book grounds itself in evidence and positions itself firmly on the side of science. Be assured that the valuable advice you’ll receive here is proven, factual and safe. You will be reading the book finally written by the man ‘who wrote the book’ on the subject.
Having known Dr. Walter Crinnion for over three decades, I can assure you that there is no better authority in nutritional medicine on the subjects of detoxification and cleansing. Better yet I can report that the guidance you are about to receive in this book is given in that friendly, informal style that characterizes Walter’s genuine personality and temperament and which serves to make him such as popular instructor and much sought-after lecturer.
A quick study of the book’s beginning, middle and end can best allow us to appreciate the sheer conceptual scale of this work.
Walter begins by taking the reader on a trip to the invisible world of the hidden toxins that permeate our everyday life, uncovering the hidden threats behind pesticides, PCBs and DDT and describes the nine classes of toxic compounds. In short order, you’ll find out how to detoxify non-organic produce and cleanse you home environment. His advice is sound and practicable and ranges from the latest biochemistry and genomics to something as simple as taking your shoes off before you enter your home.
After identifying the problem, the second part of the book launches into the basics of naturopathic detoxification. There is an extensive discussion of the importance of cleansing the bowels --advice as valid now as when it was first offered by Hippocrates, the father of medicine, over two thousand years ago. How to block fat absorption using safe and commonly available herbal remedies, enhancing the detoxification mechanisms of the liver and kidneys, balancing the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ estrogens in the body and some terrific supplement advice round out the second part of the book.
The final third of the book is where your ‘Clean Green and Lean’ program is developed. It allows you to work towards a cleaner, greener life through a guided step-by-step approach. You’ll begin by purging and reorganizing your food pantry. Then, by using a daily journal, you’ll learn how to use an elimination process to help identify problematic foods. This section is capped off by a terrific recipe collection and an extensive and helpful collection of outside resources.
Over the years I’ve seen Dr. Walter Crinnion literally give patients back their own lives; often as the happy ending to an otherwise sorry tale of missed diagnoses, therapeutic dead-ends and thousands of wasted dollars. It is my great honor and pleasure to introduce you to his first book.
Finally I would like to single out the one characteristic of Walter’s that I treasure above all others: the tremendous enthusiasm he has for this work and his mission.
The word enthusiasm comes from Greek en theos signifying ‘the God within’. That is why I’m sure that you will soon be wondering about this special person, whose first book is truly the result of being blessed with the ways and means to say those essential things that are inside him.