So it’s been a week since I got my bad cholesterol report. Some days I am on fire to research. Other days I just eat right and try to forget what might be circulating in my blood. One thing I learned quickly is that while I have never gone off the BTD since I started in 2003, I have not reviewed the food lists as often as I should. My basic Blood Type Diet needed a tune up. In the Health Library Cardiovascular Disease book, Dr. D tweaks the BTD for people with cardiovascular issues.
Today I want to revisit what I have been reminded of, and what I have learned about protein. I’ll admit from the start that after trying the GenoType Diet, I went back to the BTD. However there were super beneficial foods on the GTD that were either neutral on the BTD or not named. I’ve been enjoying them, and it is now a food by food judgment call about how to handle those foods on the Cardiovascular BTD.
All quotes in today’s blog will be from Dr. D’s Cardiovascular Disease book.
I quickly saw my first problem on the meat list. Because I have a Type A husband and one of my children is Type A, I cook a lot of chicken and turkey. They are both neutral allowed frequently (NAF), so they are not bad. However I don’t cook as much beef, buffalo, lamb and veal. And those are the super beneficial foods for Type O. I have cooked more beef this week. I’ve got buffalo on my shopping list for next week.
Fish is a similar situation. Cod is super beneficial for us both, and I do cook cod frequently. Salmon is super beneficial for Type As, and I love salmon. But salmon for me is NAF. Red Snapper is super beneficial for us both – I can buy more of that. Halibut that is super beneficial for me is avoid for him. Rainbow trout is super beneficial for us both. He loves trout and crunches right through the tiny bones. The bones drive me so crazy I can’t enjoy my meal. I’m sorry, I refuse to eat trout, even if it is super beneficial.
Eggs turned out to be a totally unexpected problem. Dr. D’s Type O food lists, both in standard and cardiovascular say eggs are NAF and to eat 3-6 eggs per week. I’m sure I knew that at one time, but when I was trying the GTD, both the Hunter and Gatherer food lists said eggs were super beneficial and to eat 7-9 eggs per week. Eggs were said to be good for weight loss and for healing the digestive tract. I have been eating a 3-egg frittata 3 days a week for years, thinking that I was doing something really beneficial for myself. Now I don’t know what to think.
This week I have had three frittatas, but I have made them with 2 eggs each plus an ounce of leftover beef, turkey, or fish. I wish I knew what I really need to do about eggs for my cholesterol.
Cheese was a big disappointment. Pre BTD I ate a lot of cheese – mostly cheddar. On the BTD my cheeses were limited to feta and mozzarella. (I couldn’t find farmer cheese in my grocery store.) I added parmesan because it was beneficial for Hunters. I was content to have feta, mozzarella, and parmesan as an occasional garnish on a salad or a bowl. According to Dr. D’s Cardiovascular Disease book, parmesan is avoid; feta and mozzarella are neutrals allowed infrequently. I guess this means no cheese at home – period. If a restaurant puts feta or mozzarella on my salad I will eat it.
I love nuts. I love the taste, I love the crunch. When I started the BTD and had to give up wheat and most dairy, I substituted nuts. That worked really well for the first 10 years. But in recent years, I’ve noticed that nut butter causes weight gain similar to wheat. A serving of trail mix does the same. I had already cut way back on nuts.
“Nuts and seeds are a secondary source of protein for Blood Type O…Overall, however, your intake of vegetable protein should be limited because they do not build active tissue mass (calorie burning cells) as efficiently as lean meats, fowl, and fish.” That was the bad news.
Here was the good news: ” Walnuts are highly recommended, as they are known to be helpful in lowering cholesterol and triglycerides and regulating blood sugar. Flax is an excellent source of fiber and can also help lower cholesterol, protect the arteries and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes.”
Chia seeds also have the reputation of being high in fiber and good for cholesterol. They are not listed on any of the BTD lists, but are beneficial for Hunters and Gatherers.
So this week in my supper mix I have included 1 Tablespoon of walnuts and have alternated 1 Tablespoon of flax or chia. The nuts take the place of the protein powders I had been using. While Dr. D’s Cardiovascular Disease book doesn’t mention protein powder for Type O’s, it does make it pretty clear that meat, fowl, and fish are the protein sources I should be concentrating on.
Next time I’ll look at how I’ve tuned up and tweaked vegetables and fruits.