My brother is A and his wife is type B. I didn't know the blood types of their two daughters, and I had them pegged as Elder:A and Younger:B. On what grounds?
First and foremost, on the basis of my sister-in-law's two miscarriages, between the two births. As Dr. D'Adamo explains in his Complete Blood Type Encyclopedia and his Live Right 4 Your Type, often when a husband's blood type is incompatible with that of his wife, a child's blood type can also be incompatible; in these cases the foreign antigen can provoke an antibody reaction as blood is exchanged during birth, as in the classic Rh scenario. When this happens, it can provoke miscarriages of future incompatible embryos, until such time as one is conceived bearing a type compatible with the mother. So I figured baby #2 as B like Mom, and #1 as A like Dad (or even AB, but I rejected the latter for other reasons, especially that she is definitely more cortisol- than catecholamine-driven under stress).
Next line of reasoning: Mom and child #2 are night owls who sleep until noon if permitted. Dad and child #1 are "morning people" and like to get to bed on the early side.
Personality-wise: Child #1 has always tended toward worry, anxiety and delicacy, while child #2 is a hardier, sassy adventurous sort.
You can't blame me for my guesses, right?
Both girls have now donated blood. Well, I'll be: The elder is type B, and the younger is A. It's caused me to re-think and re-consider.
I'm thrilled that the younger one, who has been a vegetarian ("plus fish") for the past half dozen years, is type A. That'd been bothering me, when I thought she was B.
I'm puzzled about the whole B personality thing, however. The elder niece is very much the straight arrow. And that's what throws you. Her B mom, too, is not your arty, zany, multi-faceted, multi-lingual type. So my horizons are expanding, as I'm reminded of other B's, including past clients, who've been B and haven't necessarily fit the mold, so to speak. (How very B!)
It seems B can be defined, personality-wise, in this way above all: They do things their own way. They really don't care what all the other kids are doing, what all the other mothers say, how the PTA voted; you get the idea. I think A's are somewhat more bothered by aspects of their own differentness than are B's; A's want to fit in, while B's aren't even thinking about that. The A child can think: "I wish I were _______, like the other kids" where the B child is likelier to think "I wish the other kids were as ____________as I am", or, better, "I wish there were one other kid I could relate to". The A might be more eager, too, to adjust him/herself to others' comfort zones.
B's aren't necessarily in anybody's face about who they are; they just stand their own ground. My B niece fools you with her quietness; you think she's a shrinking violet or something. Then she reminds you that her quietness must be defended, when the rank and file college crowd want to drag her out to some party. She's like so many B's of the "No Thanks" variety; B has a very easy time saying "No". If you have daughters, you can sleep better with a kid like that! My sister-in-law is also very much a one-of-a-kind/majority-be-damned sort.
I see this as genetically-related, as reflected in B's anthropologic history. There are those A farms and communities, and those ambitious, covetous, power-driven O's within them. And then there are us shepherds out there counting shooting stars, checking in only to sell a camel or goat-hair tent fabric in exchange for produce. We don't expect the settlers to see things our way, to sell their homesteads and become nomads. And this minority-hood is a status we retain: Only 10% or so of humans are of type B. B's don't TRY to be odd; we just don't try to be un-odd either! That individual who frustrates your circle for refusing to toe the line is likely to be B.
Topsy-turvy. I find this out just in time to be grateful for it: The elder is going into surgery this morning, and whereas we all thought she'd be a nervous wreck about it, she's actually rather philosophical, taking it a step at a time.
My A brother has explained the A versus B crisis mentality thus: "I stress out, while my wife's the rock of Gibraltar for as long as the crisis lasts, and no matter how long. She holds absolutely everything together for everyone, until the crisis is over. Then, while the rest of us re-enter normalcy, she crashes." I don't know about the "crashes" part, but there is a certain tenaciousness that the blood type personality theorists notice in B's.
I've had many a B postpartum client who may seem to be "crashing". There's something dramatic about the way a B "falls apart". She's got amazing personality-integrity, so you know she's pulling through and getting stronger all the while. The B client makes no bones about it, in a "Let me put you on hold while I thoroughly freak out" sort of way; you know she'll regain her footing as soon as she figures things out.
I stand corrected. I'm only too happy to add so much intimate data to my base.
I'd like to see a psychiatry book by Dr. D'Adamo. There's certainly enough data on the bloodtype link to fill one; his Encyclopedia contains much of this, and his other books mention it as well.
Psychiatric symptoms are all too common in our world today, and the field could use all the help it can get in the diagnosis, classification and treatment of these. Happily, I've met two San Francisco psychiatrists who are familiar with, and praise, Dr. D'Adamo's work. Another one, specializing in the postpartum, uses nutritional therapy. And all three are USSR-born.
The most common and well-documented connections I've seen between bloodtype and psychiatric symptomatology are bloodtype O/bipolar/aggression and A/anxiety/depression. Those of bloodtype O or A (together constituting the vast majority of Americans -- about 86%) would do well to follow D'Adamo's Live Right 4 Your Type diet/fitness/lifestyle/supplement guidelines to see if symptoms do not abate or disappear. The B and AB bloodtype/psychiatric classification connection is not quite as clear.
I hold the opinion that the understanding of the psyche really requires an anthropologic knowledge of the individual's bloodtype's roots. Thus the energy expenditure patterns, overall life rhythm and orientation to the world can be respected, so that an A does not try to drug himself to function as a healthy O, for example. As long as psychiatry holds out only one model for a healthy American psyche, the majority of Americans will be seen to lack it; the healthy O and healthy A should NOT appear identical. A bloodtype-educated psychiatrist can assist patients in adjusting to life's challenges in ways commensurate with their genetic inheritance, so as to evoke behaviors and responses reflecting their individuality. Clinically, options for pharmacology and style/program of psychotherapy can be explored far less randomly and differential diagnoses refined according to bloodtype-geared parameters.
Finally, psychiatrists are rather more likely to acquaint themselves with alternative models than are other MDs. I've had a few of them as clients; they tend to be (of bloodtype B and) open to the paradigm. A focussed compilation of bloodtype data and case histories, showing nutritional/fitness/lifestyle/supplementation AND pharmacology recommendations would be, as I see it, well received by many of them. If there's any way to bring them on board, including via research published in their journals, society may actually grow saner!
Neurologists speak of "plasticity"; they're describing keeping mentally fit. Dr. D'Adamo treats of this in his book on aging and elsewhere: Ways for midlifers and seniors to keep their neurons firing. Everyone recommends "mixing it up", doing things differently from time to time. Some rut-bound types have to force themselves to follow that advice. I seem naturally to be of the intellectual-calisthenics persuasion.
Recently, I began plotting the genealogy of a friend whose pedigree is particularly illustrious. Talk about mental gymnastics! There's a lot of detangling to do. It's challenging and interesting. I recommend it highly. It also helps one develop computer skills, both web-surfing and all sorts of downloading, scanning, and editing.
Here are ideas for keeping those brain cells limber and lithe:
Plot a complex genealogical map.
Learn a new language and speak it frequently (go to the appropriate foreign country or neighborhood).
Learn to READ in a new (or dead) language. Read a new sentence, then paragraph, then page, each week, then each day.
Teach yourself a new alphabet: Cyrillic, sanskrit, greek, arabic, hebrew...
Dr. D. recommends crossword puzzles. If you're a whiz at these, start timing yourself. Write starting and finishing times. Then set goals, such as "weekday NY Times: 20 mins.", "Sunday Times: 45 mins." Even if you don't finish, your speed will increase naturally, and you've put a new spin on the whole activity. Also: If you've always done crosswords, switch to acrostics, or London Times, or a foreign language.
Do brain twisters. Mensa puts out books of these. You can even take a Mensa-proctored and -graded IQ test, available in many cities. It's actually fun!
Study something new, in depth. Choose a historic era, location, subject -- The reign of Amenhotep, the NASA Apollo program, diamond mining in South Africa, national healthcare programs around the world - whatever matters to or intrigues you. Go to a library or bookstore and browse for a few HOURS. See what develops. (My brother made it a point to study one course, from his kids' high school programs, right along with them, each semester.)
Take up a new hobby: Scrapbooking. Rock-collecting/gemology/jewelry-making. Photography (the real kind: with film). Drawing. Gardening. Crocheting. Needlepointing. Home decor and/or crafts projects. Carpentry. Furniture salvaging/refinishing. Ceramics. Weaving. Cookery in a new style. Wine-tasting. Start small; collect ideas first. Be on the lookout.
Take up a new sport: Go to a putting green or a driving range. Smack some tennis balls from a Ball Boy. Start swimming. Learn archery. Play ping-pong or pool. Take dance lessons, T'ai chi, yoga. Ride a bike. Pump iron. Go sailing. Row a boat. Go fishing.
Listen to all different styles of music: Classical, Gregorian chant, gospel, country, bossa nova, raga, rai, celtic, swing, motown: Dance to all of them.
Educate your ear: Take an audio course in music history/appreciation. Subscribe to an orchestral season. Take up an instrument, perhaps one that you dropped in grade school. If you're talented, start a chamber group in your town. Join a chorus: Most cities have at least one of these...or start one!
Help someone. Identify a neighbor or acquaintance who might benefit from a skill or from time of yours. Make a commitment.
Enroll your dog in an obedience, agility, herding or coursing program.
Play scrabble or Boggle or Trivial Pursuit.
Learn bridge, mah-jongg, or canasta.
Go on an adventure trip: Cruise Antarctica, Galapagos, Alaska. Ride a camel in Jordan. Go to a dude ranch. Participate in an archeological dig.
Go on a mercy trip: Build a house in New Orleans. Bring medicine to Gaza.
Diversify your investment portfolio and educate yourself about a particular market or sector. Track it. Subscribe to a relevant journal. Attend a conference on it.
Get involved with a new charitable organization. Sit on the board of one that matters particularly to you.
Befriend younger people. Get to know them. Find out what interests them, how they view the world. Invite them over for coffee.
Read the encyclopedia (I kid you not) and talk about what you discover therein (I had a fascinating cousin whose conversational topics started with the same letter for months at a time; she had a complete set of Britannica in her bathroom).
Read the Bible, cover to cover, according to a feasible plan: Plot it out.
A chapter (or so) a day? Uplifting!
Study an atlas. Teach yourself state/country capitals, names of shires, states, provinces départements/cantons of favorite countries. Play Geography with friends and family.
Participate in an online forum about something new to you.
And, of course, "Come up with stuff to blog about!"
[posted by Dr. D'Adamo for Sante J]
Posted by Peter D'Adamo for Sante_J.
I won't mince words: I'm on a junk jag. I'm feeling lazy and choose to order in or go for quick meals. I'll touch upon four "avoid" foods I've tasted -- truly tasted -- recently.
The first is popcorn. I've gone many years in a row with no popcorn. I don't miss it. But now that I've had some, I've discovered that it has a powerful taste with which I'm no longer familiar: It's CORNY! There's just no other way to describe it. The interesting thing about popcorn is: It's easy to eat without tasting it. You can focus on your movie or TV show. You can perceive it mostly texturally (a sensual marvel in itself). You can enjoy the butter or the salt or the herb-sprinkle. You can mindlessly scarf it down by the handful. But if you stop and focus, there's just no way around its sheer corniness. It's quite miraculous, really, that corn, burst from its kernel, tastes the way corn on the cob tastes, the way ground corn in chips tastes: Corny. And nothing else in the world does, or comes close.
The second is root beer. This is a subject worthy of its very own blog. I "discovered" root beer this spring. I'm sipping one right now. It's rather a delicacy for me, as an "avoid", and I relish it. A good root beer (this one is "Barq's Famous Olde Tyme...Since 1898")(it also contains corn syrup - I know - and it doesn't taste corny) brings out my inner perfumer. It has a dark, musty patchouli-like base, the requisite hint of birch, a vanilla roundness, and a spiking of clove. A sophisticated cordial, if well blended and properly appreciated. A top-notch root beer syrup could be a cocktail ingredient, extended, perhaps, with rum or certain whiskies.
Third is arabbiata or "fra diavolo" tomato sauce. The "diavolo" is in the peppers, and they're essential to complexifying a good marinara base, especially if undergirded by such suitable foils as crustaceans or a beneficial ocean fish such as halibut. Linguine marinara is fine, but just as easy is a jar of Rao's Arabbiata or Classico Spicy Pepper tomato sauce. Another way to add interest is to do as my Nana so masterfully did: Go Garlicky.
Fourth is vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt. No: I don't like them lately. Haagen-Dasz vanilla frozen yogurt, Breyer's vanilla ice cream. Taste: Sugar, sugar, sugar (and probably corn syrup too, again!). A single note with no complexity. These might silkily enrich a fine root beer (as a "float") or take a brandy- or rum-based saucing, but alone they are no longer (Hooray!) a temptation. They'd do well to take on a textural garnish component, such as particularly raspy walnuts, with that rum sauce, or to be founded upon a spiced cake. Of the four recent avoids, solitary vanilla ice cream is the low scorer, by a wide margin (Then again, I'm not exactly advocating solitary tomato sauce!).
I could easily have hidden from you my little vices. But what I wanted to share was the art of fully experiencing one's food. Avoids are foods we may be better qualified to truly taste, for their being relative rarities in our long-term programs. And if you're going to "cheat", make it good!
Dr. D'Adamo says he waits all year for his wife Martha's stuffed cabbage, an avoid for him. I'll bet he really tastes it, too.
I decided to run an experiment last week, after a single blood pressure reading was high and got me concerned. I wondered about the circumstances, the machine itself, and, of course, my actual cardiovascular state of health. And I thought, "If I can get a NORMAL reading out of that same gizmo, under any or some circumstances, then I'll have a better idea of what that high reading meant."
So my neighbor let me borrow the sphygmomanometer, to take it through a 24-hour period, beginning with after-dinner reclining, through later evening, pre-rising in the morning, while getting ready for work, at work, arriving home, while making dinner, after-dinner reclining while opening mail, etc.
The most important information I gleaned was that blood pressure -- mine, anyway --really does vary, even quite widely, in the same subject under different conditions, such as:
Arm used (maybe)
Time of day
Proximity to meal-, wine-, and supplement/medication-consumption
Degree of environmental/mental stress
Type of environmental/mental stress
There were a few stressful moments during this day, so it was informative to take readings while reacting to them. And there are surprises, such as there being no significant variation in my blood pressure readings when listening to soothing classical strings music as opposed to listening to Rush Limbaugh's talk show!
Note: This particular model also records pulse, which might or might not relate to (a) systolic and/or (b) diastolic values.
Now that so many consumers self-monitor, it's vital that they run a similar experiment; indeed cardiologists recommend that a get-acquainted product orientation be undergone. This practice helps one determine the best time(s) and setting(s) in which to take a reading, when it's likely to come up low, normal, and/or high, and how high. While not making light of high blood pressure, I am suggesting that high readings be factored into a more all-encompassing picture, if, indeed, there is one.
And then, if a medication trial or a lifestyle alteration is undertaken, there'll be a baseline pattern against which to analyze their efficacy.