Tuesday, July 15, 2014

At Ars Technica, Carl Zimmer Schwacks ND D'Adamo's Blood Type Diet (2014)

here, I quote from a recent piece up at Ars Technica by Carl Zimmer on the "Blood Type Diet" of ND D'Adamo:

001. Carl Zimmer, in "What’s Behind Your Blood Type?" (2014-07-15)(also at mosaicscience.com), writes:

"in 1996, a naturopath named Peter D’Adamo published a book called Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type. D’Adamo argued that we must eat according to our blood type in order to harmonize with our evolutionary heritage [...] foods that weren’t suited to our blood type contained antigens that could cause all sorts of illness. D’Adamo recommended his diet as a way to reduce infections, lose weight, fight cancer and diabetes, and slow the aging process.  D’Adamo’s book has sold seven million copies and has been translated into 60 languages. It’s been followed by a string of other blood-type diet books [...he] also sells a line of blood-type-tailored diet supplements on his website [...]";


"some unscientific explanations have gained huge popularity [...] 'it’s just been ridiculous', sighs Connie Westhoff, the Director of Immunohematology and Genomics at the New York Blood Center. For Westhoff and many experts on blood types, there’s nothing more ridiculous than the hugely popular 'Blood Type Diet' [...]";

there we go, the money quote.

"doctors often get asked by their patients if blood-type diets actually work. The best way to answer that question is to run an experiment. In Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type, D’Adamo wrote that he was in the eighth year of a decade-long trial of blood-type diets on women with cancer. But 18 years later, there’s no trace of such a trial in the published scientific literature [...]";

why publish an objective and high-quality trial if you're successful already?  That involves RISKING your BTD income!

"recently, researchers at the Red Cross in Belgium decided to see if there was any other evidence in its favor [...}';

here comes reality, sneaking up in ND D'Adamo's rear-view mirror.

"they hunted through the scientific literature for experiments that measured the benefits of diets based on blood types. Although they examined more than 1,000 studies, their efforts were futile. 'There is no direct evidence supporting the health effects of the ABO blood type diet,' says Emmy DeBuck of the Belgian Red Cross-Flanders [...]";

so, the claim that BTD is science-based is false.  Just like naturopathy's claim that its principles are false.  It's another example of how 'anything is science' within naturopathy.

"after DeBuck and her colleagues published their review in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, D’Adamo responded on his blog. He waved away the importance of trials, instead asserting that basic biological research shows that his blood-type diet is right. 'There is good science behind the blood type diets, just like there was good science behind Einstein’s mathmatical [sic] calculations that led to the Theory of Relativity,' he wrote.  Comparisons to Einstein notwithstanding, the scientists who actually do research on blood types categorically reject such a claim [...] according to Ahmed El-Sohemy, a nutrition scientist at the University of Toronto [...] as a scientist, El-Sohemy found Eat Right 4 Your Blood Type lacking [...]  'none of the stuff in the book is backed by science'[...]"; 

oh snap!

'the promotion of these diets is wrong,' a group of researchers flatly declared in Transfusion Medicine Review [...]";

and that is obviously an accusation of being professionally unethical.  Oh, I would so revel on the sidelines if there was a class-action suit!
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