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Question: What does secretor status mean?

Answer: Secretor status is whether you do or don't secrete your blood group antigen into your body fluids.

Eighty percent of the population secrete their blood type antigen into their body fluids, these people are termed secretors, the 20% that don’t are termed non- secretors. The implications if you are a non-secretor are quite dramatic according to an impressionable body of scientific research. Apart from different dietary recommendations in general, non-secretors are far more likely to suffer from an immune disease than secretors, especially when it is provoked by an infectious organism. Non-secretors also have genetically induced difficulties removing immune complexes from their tissues, which increases their risk of attacking tissue that contains them. In other words, non-secretors are a bit more predisposed to view their own tissue as unfriendly (auto-immunity). Non- secretors make up only 15% of the population but are dominant in nearly every immune system disorder:
• Non-secretors are more prone to generalised inflammation than secretors.
• Non-secretors are more prone to type 1/2 diabetes than secretors
• Non-secretors with type 1 diabetes have more problems with the yeast Candida albicans in their mouths and upper GI tracts
• Non secretors have an extra risk for recurrent urinary tract infections
• Non-secretors have an increased prevalence of a variety of autoimmune diseases, including ankylosing spondylitis, reactive arthritis, psoriatic arthropathy, Sjorgens syndrome, multiple sclerosis, and Graves disease.
• Non-secretors account for 80% of fibromyalgia sufferers irrespective of blood type
• Non secretors comprise about 15% of the population, but 80% of people doctors categorize as “complex” patients. They’re hard to diagnose properly and slow to cure
Non secretors are the most dramatic responders when they keep to the dietary recommendations, the clinical improvement
A small % of the population 1/1000 will be typed as a double lewis negative, a saliva sample will then need to be sent to the US for further testing in order to determine the secretor status. (D’Adamo cited in Pizzorno and Murray 2005) (Yarnell 2001)

Question: Aside from blood type principles; from a general health standpoint, are there any food choice tips?


Organic produce, organic dairy and free range meats are recommended. Genetically altered foods (which includes virtually all non-organic soy beans), hydrogenated oils (margarine), partially hydrogenated oils, artificial sweeteners, colors, aromas, and flavors should be avoided. Smoked and fried foods are not recommended. Oils should be purchased and stored in light-proof containers, preferably refrigerated after opening. White flour and sugars should be eaten rarely, if at all. MSG should not be used. Avoid aluminum cookery (it can contaminate your food with aluminum) and microwaves (they change the molecular structure of foods in unknown ways) for heating foods.
Do you have patients or reports of people with non-Hodgkins lymphoma whose health has improved or lives have been extended by following the BTD?

I have and I feel any cancer patient will benefit from following BTD.

Dr. D'Adamo's (www.dadamo.com) own brother in law Jim is still doing very well, eight years after having been diagnosed with both Hodgkin's Disease and Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

I think the BTD program for cancer and cancer prevention has a lot to offer patients trying to do something positive for themselves in conjunction with proper and appropriate conventional oncology care.

General, the best source for information on using the BTD for situations like this is the D'Adamo Library Book on Cancer which you can purchase from www.right4eu.com or from your local lending library. Or better still book an appointment with Carole.

There's lots of good, reliable and sound info in there.

The trick is to take someone and turn them into what Bernie Siegel calls 'the exceptional cancer patient.' Peter D'Adamo always tell his cancer patients that no matter how grim or dire the circumstances, there is always a minimum percentage of survivivors, and his job is to get his patient into the survivor group. I try to do the same.

There are lots of unexplored links between blood type and cancer; we are now just beginning to scratch the surface. Certainly choosing foods according to their blood type reactivity is a smart idea if your are undergoing chemotherapy or radiation: It's just another way to help conserve resources.

A story that Dr D'Adamo told in his cancer book sums things up nicely.

One of Peter D'Adamos long term cancer survivors used to run a support group at a cancer center in NYC. She would always mention the BTD, but most people would just fob it off. One day the head of radiation oncology ran by in a hurry, glanced in, then kept going. But in about ten minutes he returned. He was born in China, so his English was rather clipped. He pointed to the copy of Eat Right For Your Type that my patient had on her chair.

'Good book. Very good book.' he said, gesturing with his finger.

You could have knocked over Peters patient with a feather.

'How do you know about this book?' she asked.

'Oh,' he replied: 'Last person in support group always waving that book.'

After Dr. D'Adamo's brother-in-law had obviously beaten the odds (he was given 3-6 months with treatment) he was asked to return to the Medical Center, where he described the scene as a 'sea of white coats.' They took note of every element of his protocol; foods, vitamins, herbs, etc. He was surprised to find out that this was not uncommon in seemingly miraculous type results.

You see, cancer has a virtually zero placebo effect, so when something unexpected happens in a cancer patient (especially one under their direct care) even the conventional oncologists want to know about it.
Question: I want to know what a good source of lycopene is, since tomatoes are best avoided for some genetic types.

Answer: It should also be remembered that tossing a tomato into your salad is not going to give you all that much lycopene. Tomatoes have a very high water content, so not surprisingly you only find high concentrations of lycopene in tomato paste. You also find large amounts of tomato lectin in tomato paste. Research confirms that lycopene from tomatoes is absorbed much better into the bloodstream if it is first processed.

OK, now for the good news: Lycopene is found in a number of other foods in addition to tomatoes. Let’s take a look:

Food Micrograms lycopene per 100 grams

Tomato paste, canned 8580
Guava 6500
Watermelon, raw 5400
Grapefruit, red* 4100
Papaya 3500
Tomato, raw 3100
Apricots, dried 864
Rosehip puree 780

There is some evidence that Texas Red Grapefruit has the highest lycopene content of all commercially available grapefruit. As you can see from the chart, raw tomato does not place very high.
Question: What is a Lectin?


A protein substance commonly found in foods that binds with glycoproteins and glycolipids on the surface of animal cells causing agglutination. Some lectins cause agglutination of erythrocytes in specific blood groups. (medical dictionary definition). Lectins also play a significant role in hormonal reactions.

In lay language, this translates to very tiny molecules found in foods that selectively cause blood and other body tissues to stick together. A lectin that causes the tissues of a person of one blood type to stick together will not necessarily have the same effect on a person of a different blood type.
Question: How can it be that wheat isn't good for anyone? Hasn't it been a staple in man's diet for thousands of years?


Wheat as we know it in the millennia of this era is not the same as it was at the very beginning. The genetics of wheat show that its development is very complex. Today's grain has developed from three naturally occurring groups of wheat. Through natural crossings, mutations, and natural selection these have evolved into all the many varieties of wheat grown worldwide.

In essence, the 'hard wheat' that we eat nowadays has a protein content as high as 13%, versus the more ancient wheats which had a protein content of, at most, about 2%. Increasing the protein content has had the effect of making wheat a viable source of protein for many people around the world, but has also increased the allergenic (gliandin, gluten and lectin containing), pro-inflammatory and metabolic-blocking portions of the plant almost seven-fold.

Aside from the under-investigated metabolic effects of wheat lectin, classic hypersensitivity to wheat is found in many infants and adults. Reactions are often localised in the GI tract. In a study of asthmatic patients, 46% (children) and 34% (adults) were found to have IgE to wheat as tested by Pharmacia & Upjohn, Diagnostics CAP System. In another study, specificity for wheat allergen using the same system was 98%. Wheat allergy was found to cause a persistent food hypersensitivity in atopic dermatitis patients (75% remained intolerant). In 102 grass-pollen allergic children, 12% were found to be allergic to wheat.

Spelt is only 2% protein and reccomended as a neutral food for all but 12% of the population, the O non-secretors. See FAQ: What is spelt?

Question: What is nutrigenomics?

Answer: The premise is simple: diet is a big factor in chronic disease, responsible, some say, for a third of most types of cancer. Dietary chemicals change the expression of one's genes and even the genome itself. And - here's the key - the influence of diet on health depends on an individual's genetic makeup.

How does that work? Consider what happens, biologically, when we eat a meal. Until quite recently, most scientists thought food had basically one job: it was metabolised to provide energy for the cell. Indeed, that is what happens to most dietary chemicals - but not all. Some don't get metabolised at all; instead, the moment they're ingested, they peel off and become ligands - molecules that bind to proteins involved in "turning on" certain genes to one degree or another. A diet that's particularly out of balance, nutritional-genomics scientists say, will cause gene expressions that nudge us toward chronic illness unless a precisely-tailored "intelligent diet" is employed to restore the equilibrium.

Take genestein, a chemical in soy which attaches to oestrogen receptors and regulates genes. Individuals may have oestrogen receptors that react to genestein differently, helping to explain why two people eating the same diet can respond very differently - one maintaining weight, for example, and the other ballooning.

The assumption of genetic markers that distinguish one ethnic group from another is at the philosophical heart of nutrigenomics.

Here's the most familiar example: If you're of northern European ancestry, you can probably digest milk, and if you're south-east Asian, you probably can't. In most mammals the gene for lactose tolerance switches off once an animal is weaned. Humans shared that fate until a mutation in the DNA of an isolated population of northern Europeans around 10,000 years ago introduced an adaptive tolerance for nutrient-rich milk. The likelihood that you tolerate milk depends on the degree to which you have northern European blood.

"As humans evolved, and as our bodies interacted with foods on each of the continents, we sort of self-selected for these naturally occurring variants. And certain populations have variants that, when presented with western-type food, which is usually fatty and overprocessed and high in calories, pushes them toward disease rather than health."

Plenty of examples bear out this ill fit between certain cultures and certain diets - suggesting, if not quite proving, some interplay of genes and nutrition:

* Japanese who relocated to the United States after the second world war soon saw their cholesterol levels soar.

*The Alaskan Inuit, whose metabolism was suited to moving around all day, looking for high-fat food, were saddled with an evolutionary disadvantage when they began living in heated homes and travelling on snowmobiles. They now show high levels of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

*The Masai of East Africa have developed new health problems since abandoning their traditional meat, blood and milk diet for corn and beans.

T he cradle of nutrigenomics is the cradle of humankind itself: the original migration out of Africa created widely separated subpopulations with distinct collections of gene variants. Members of each subpopulation tend to respond similarly to diet and environmental conditions. But the genetics of race is an inexact science. Since many people have ancestors from different continents data is rarely clean-cut. In other words, ethnicity is relevant to nutritional genomics but only as a starting point. Which is why the idea of sorting ourselves by race and pursuing a diet consistent with the original continental diet isn't going to be very helpful.

The staggering complexity of interactions among genes, and between genes and the environment, can be a real challenge to solve. "Eat right for your genotype" By Dr. Peter D'Adamo available from December 07 will hopefully help further unravel some of these complex issues.

Until then we have as a window into genetic makeup: Blood groups, sub groups and ethnicity.

The Blood Type Diet is the starting point for the concept of nutritional genomics in natural medicine. Nutrigenetics is about the application of genetics to human nutrition, and the Blood Type Diet is based on the premise that there is a haplotype, or set of single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with each blood group through genetic linkage, that can increase or decrease the risk of specific diseases for individuals with that blood group. These health risks can be lessened through dietary choices.

The concept has moved on since the publication of the book Eat Right 4 Your Type in 1997, and now includes other polymorphisms in addition to blood groups, such as dermatoglyphics. Genetic testing is currently expensive and requires investment in high-tech laboratory equipment, but using low-tech methods that can be obtained in the clinic, the physician can obtain a large amount of information about their patient based on extensive medical research dating back to times before genotyping.

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