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Old 09-05-2008, 02:07 PM
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Epilepsy and The Blood Type Diet


A young student's college research paper on Epilepsy and diet:


Quote :
EPILEPSY and THE BLOOD TYPE DIET
Anna Marciniak

Are people with certain blood types more susceptible to chronic seizures than others? Can a simple diet reverse this medical condition? And why didn't anybody think of this before?


There's a myriad of fad diets out these days: Atkins, the fruit juice diet, Russian Air Force diet, and the Zone to name a few. However, the most recent craze is, "The Blood Type Diet", based on the book, Eat Right 4 Your Type by Doctor Peter D'Adamo. The diet focuses on an individual's genetic makeup (blood type) in determining which foods are best digested. D'Adamo heads up the Institute for Human Individuality (IfHi), which "seeks to foster research in the expanding area of human nutrigenomics. The science of nutrigenomics (naturopathic medicine) seeks to provide a molecular understanding for how common dietary chemicals affect health by altering the expression or structure of an individual's genetic makeup" (1). On the website, the "five basic tenets of nutrigenomics" are listed as:

1. Improper diets are risk factors for disease.

2. Dietary chemicals alter gene expression and/or change genome
structure.

3. The degree to which diet influences the balance between healthy and
disease states may depend on an individual's genetic makeup.

4. Some diet-regulated genes (and their normal, common variants) are
likely to play a role in the onset, incidence, progression, and/or severity
of chronic diseases.

5. "Intelligent nutrition" - that is, diets based upon genetics, nutritional
requirements and status - prevents and mitigates chronic diseases. (1).

The Blood Type Diet is founded upon the microscopic observation of how ABO types break down different foods, suggesting that one person's nourishment may be another's poison. The book examines the demographic distributions of different blood types, and proposes that "the variations, strengths and weaknesses of each blood group can be seen as part of humanity's continual process of acclimating to different environmental challenges" (2). D'Adamo asserts that blood groups "evolved as migratory mutations," with type O being the most "ancient" of the ABO group, and housing the largest population (40-45%), second to type A (35-40%), dwindling in B (4-11%), with the rarest being AB (0-2%). People with type O blood (hunter-gatherers) are encouraged to be carnivores, while type A's can survive solely as vegetarians. Explaining the origin and spread of blood type B, D'Adamo states, "Two basic blood group B population patterns emerged out of the Neolithic revolution in Asia: an agrarian, relatively sedentary population located in the south and east, and the wandering nomadic societies of the north and west" (2).. Most Jewish populations have average blood type rates of B; specifically, B group is most frequently found in Europeans: Asians, Poles, Russians, and Hungarians.

The book stresses that certain blood types are more susceptible to specific diseases than others, because of dangerous agglutinating lectins which attack the blood stream and lead to disease. Specifically, people of blood type B are more prone to hypoglycemia, stress (type B's show higher than normal cortisol levels in situations of stress), MS, lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, auto-immune and nervous disorders. D'Adamo writes that type B's "sophisticated refinement in the evolutionary journey;" was "an effort to join together divergent peoples and cultures. Usually type B's can resist the most severe diseases common to modern life" (2)., i.e., heart disorders and cancers; however, their systems are more prone to exotic immune system disorders, in this case: epilepsy.

About 1% of the world's population are affected by seizures. A person who experiences seizures is not an "epileptic" but rather suffers from the disorder epilepsy. Epilepsy is a chromosome abnormality or inherent genetic trait where "chronic or spontaneous, abnormal and excessive discharge of electrical activity from a collection of neurons arises in the brain as electrical misfirings" (4).. The exact cause of epilepsy has yet to be specifically determined, thus characterizing it as an idiopathic disease, or a disease without any real identifiable origin. The electrical misfirings, which arise within the cerebrum, are usually traceable to some form of injury as a child to one or more of the brains lobes. Via an EEG machine, it's been discovered that seizures seem to originate most often in the temporal lobe, occurring in the gray matter of the brain. The gray matter in the brain is composed of cell bodies of neurons, the white matter is composed of axons of neurons, coated with insulation made from fat (hence the white color). The focus is the damaged gray matter, which is abnormally excitable, and when it spontaneously discharges, the result is a seizure.

According to D' Adamo, B group is prone to magnesium deficiency, which plays a crucial role in this disorder. "Magnesium acts as a catalyst for metabolic machinery in the B's blood type. B's systems are very efficient at assimilating calcium, and thus risk creating an imbalance between their levels of calcium and magnesium" (5). Believe it or not, this seemingly simple imbalance can lead to nervous disorders and many skin conditions (my sister has grand mal seizures and eczema). B's also have severe neurological reactions to vaccinations; because their nervous systems produce an enormous amount of B- antigens, when a vaccine is introduced into the system, there is a cross reaction, which, as D'Adamo points out, "causes the body to turn and attack its own tissues. These war-like antibodies think they are protecting their turf. In reality, they destroy their own organs: inciting an inflammatory response" (5).

What exactly happens in the brain when someone has a seizure? The first seizure is directly related to the location of the focus (the damaged gray matter in the brain); with time, the electrical explosion continues to travel rapidly throughout the brain, becoming more pronounced, more dramatic, like a forest fire spreading from tree to tree. This activity spreads along the surface of the brain cells by the sequential opening of tiny pores, which act like channels, permitting small, charged particles of sodium and calcium to enter the nerve cell. This wave of sodium and calcium ions entering the nerve cell sequentially along the surface of other cells leads to electrical excitation. Drugs that block these channels decrease the spread of abnormal electrical activity. Conversely, a lack of calcium and sodium ions, or an imbalance in the system will causes abnormal electrical activity.

"Balancing the system," is the foundation of "Eat Right For Your Type." Foods such as corn, buckwheat, lentils, peanuts, and sesame seeds affect the efficiency of the metabolic process, resulting in fatigue, fluid retention, and hypoglycemia (severe drop in blood sugar after eating a meal). The gluten found in whole wheat and wheat germ adds to the digestive and distribution problems. One of the "non brain" causes of epilepsy is a disturbed glucose metabolism (often associated with diabetes). Simple sugar used by the brain is an important form of energy. To produce glucose, the body needs insulin. Too much glucose (hyperglycemia) or too little creates the imbalance needed to trigger seizures. One of the key foods B blood types should avoid, D'Adamo says, are beans: lentils, garbanzos, pintos, and black eyed peas. Why? They interfere with the production of insulin.

A second cause of the chronic seizures disorder known as epilepsy is an electrolyte disturbance: occurring when the levels of salt in the blood stream (i.e. sodium chloride) fall too low. This can happen when bodily fluids are lost through severe diarrhea or vomiting, after extended exertion. D'Adamo attributes diarrhea to nutrient deficiency in essential fatty and folic acids (5). To compensate for this, lecithin (a lipid), choline, serine, and ethanolamine (phospholipids) supplements should be taken. While rye, corn, buckwheat, tomatoes, olives, and adaptogenic herbs (used to increase concentration and memory retention) should be avoided at all costs.

Grand Mal seizures, or Tonic Clonic seizures are perhaps the most severe and debilitating over time. To paint a picture of what happens when a person experiences a Tonic Clonic seizure, let me take you back to my first day of senior year in high school... Everyone is gathered in the auditorium for an opening day speech by the Headmaster. Mary, my 16 year old sister, 12 at the time, had had a rough morning waking up. She was tired, and my parents forced her to choke down some Farina (warm wheat-meal). It is It is early morning, and sitting in the top row, Mary gave a little cry as the air was forced out of her lungs. She slumped in her seat so her head fell on the boy next to her. Thinking she was playing a trick, he gently pushed her. Mary falls to the ground, unconscious and unresponsive as her body begins to stiffen - this is referred to as the Tonic phase. She begins to jerk - Clonic phase, as the electrical explosion spreads to both sides of her brain. The breathing slows and stops. She bites her tongue, frothing at the mouth. Her skin turns bluish gray as her air supply is cut off, putting enormous stress on her heart.

This moment can be absolutely terrifying for a family member to watch. Grand Mals reek utter havoc on the body, and often, when the affected wakes up, she is completely exhausted, feeling as if she has run a marathon. A common misconception about children is that they need excessive amounts of physical exercise. However, D'Adamo points out that stressful situations, fatigue, and unbalanced nutrition have been shown to trigger seizures, and B blood types should focus more on strengthening and toning exercise then strenuous physical exertion (substitute yoga for field hockey). Children are most prone to seizures when they wake in the morning, as their body desperately needs nutrients, what is eaten is essential. Mary, a B blood type (my brother is also a B and has Tonic Clonic seizures) had a bowl of wheat farina, which inhibits the production of insulin. We were in a rush that morning and enormous pressure was on her (she's pokey) to get out the door and off to school. In the car she tried to sleep but was restless, complaining of a headache. Mary also has very low blood pressure and had not had any juice to drink for breakfast, instead, had a glass of milk, perhaps causing an imbalance of electrolytes, or salt ions in her blood stream. Because B's are very efficient in assimilating calcium, they risk creating an imbalance between calcium and magnesium in their systems: magnesium being the chief catalyst for the metabolic machinery in B blood types. The summation of observations here? If there is not enough magnesium in B's digestive system, it cannot metabolize food properly and thus lacks any of the appropriate nutrients needed to run the body. If an agglutinating food is the first thing eaten (such as Farina), it attacks the blood stream, interfering with the production of insulin. An excessive amount of calcium in the blood first thing in the morning would create the imbalance between magnesium and calcium. A flux of calcium ions entering the nerve cell, coupled with the inability to produce insulin (hypoglycemia) is the exact recipe for an electrical storm inside the brain.

Thirty-five years ago, in a proprietary formula used for bottle feeding babies, "the vitamin B6 was inadvertently destroyed during sterilization, causing widespread seizures in infants. The newborns were cured with a B6 supplement, but this situation dramatically shows the impact B vitamins have on the nervous system" (6).. By the way, babies who are breast fed by mothers eating a low B6 diet can also have seizures. Why isn't there more information about the glaring connection between seizures and nutrition? There is a "seizure diet" on the market, the Ketogenic diet, however, it's only recommended for children 1-6 years (7)., and even then in extreme cases. Does this indicate that there's no hope for people who suffer from seizures and that they will be on medication for the rest of their lives? I don't know. Generally speaking, epilepsy is still a mystery to scientists, and in more than half of all cases of people with recurring seizures, scientists have yet to identify a cause. Research is slow, and due to the severe impact a seizure has on the brain- participants are scarce. Nervous disorders seem to occur when our systems are out of wack, or out of balance. D'Adamo's assertions ring of truth, and I believe there's matter to his words, matter worth looking into.
http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/biology...marciniak.html
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  #2  
Old 09-05-2008, 02:31 PM
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I exactly tried The Blood Type Diet for a few months. It helped me loose at least 50 lbs. Although I didn't notice any change in my seizure activity. But it certainly didn't get any worse.
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Old 09-05-2008, 04:57 PM
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I don't have type B blood, mine is 0 negative. When I had my 1st grand mal seizure I was 22 years old and I had only been out of bed for 5-10 minutes.

I've always felt mine were catamenial seizures, although I've now gone thru "the change", I still have seizures on occasion. It's still hormonal for me. I'm also diabetic now, too, so I have to watch my diet carefully and my glucose level, otherwise it can be a catastrophe for me.

Anyway, there still needs to be so much more research done on the subject of nutrition
and the brain.

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Old 09-05-2008, 05:20 PM
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Quote :
Type Os thrive on intense physical exercise and animal protein. Unlike the other blood types, Type Os muscle tissue should be slightly on the acid side. Type Os can efficiently digest and metabolize meat because they tend to have high stomach-acid content. The success of the Type O Diet depends on the use of lean, chemical-free meats, poultry, and fish. Type Os don't find dairy products and grains quite as user friendly as do most of the other blood types.

The initial weight loss on the Type O Diet is by restricting consumption of grains, breads, legumes, and beans. The leading factor in weight gain for Type Os is the gluten found in wheat germ and whole wheat products, which interferes with insulin efficiency and slow down metabolic rate. Another factor that contribute to weight gain is certain beans and legumes (lentils and kidney beans) contain lectins that deposit in the muscle tissues making them less "charged" for physical activity. The third factor in Type O weight gain is that Type Os have a tendency to have low levels of thyroid hormone or unstable thyroid functions, which also cause metabolic problems. Therefore it is good to avoid food that inhibits thyroid hormone (cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, mustard green) but increase hormone production (kelp, seafood, iodized salt).

Several classes of vegetables can cause big problems for Type Os, such as the Brassica family (cabbage, cauliflower, etc.) can inhibit the thyroid function. Eat more vegetables that are high in Vitamin K, which helps the clotting factor which is weak in Type Os. The nightshade vegetables can cause lectin deposit in the tissue surrounding the joints.

Because of the high acidity stomach, Type Os should eat fruits of alkaline nature such as berries and plums..

Type Os should severely restrict the use of dairy products. Their system is not designed for the proper metabolism. If you are a Type O of African ancestry, you should eliminate dairy foods and eggs altogether.
http://www.drlam.com/blood_type_diet/blood_o.cfm
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:46 AM
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I'm not so sure about the Blood Type Diets, but the basic premises about looking to diet for treating epilepsy is something which I do believe the medical community should be placing greater emphasis.

I wonder if Anna Marciniak is related to Michelle Marciniak (Executive Director, Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy [CURE]).
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:16 AM
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posted by Robin:


The initial weight loss on the Type O Diet is by restricting consumption of grains, breads, legumes, and beans. The leading factor in weight gain for Type Os is the gluten found in wheat germ and whole wheat products, which interferes with insulin efficiency and slow down metabolic rate. Another factor that contribute to weight gain is certain beans and legumes (lentils and kidney beans) contain lectins that deposit in the muscle tissues making them less "charged" for physical activity. The third factor in Type O weight gain is that Type Os have a tendency to have low levels of thyroid hormone or unstable thyroid functions, which also cause metabolic problems. Therefore it is good to avoid food that inhibits thyroid hormone (cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, mustard green) but increase hormone production (kelp, seafood, iodized salt).

Several classes of vegetables can cause big problems for Type Os, such as the Brassica family (cabbage, cauliflower, etc.) can inhibit the thyroid function. Eat more vegetables that are high in Vitamin K, which helps the clotting factor which is weak in Type Os. The nightshade vegetables can cause lectin deposit in the tissue surrounding the joints.

Because of the high acidity stomach, Type Os should eat fruits of alkaline nature such as berries and plums..


Hmmm.... interesting, since I do have thyroid problems, too. I don't care for legumes,cabbages, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, anyway, nor do I eat many eggs. But I do eat seafood, poultry and lots of berries. And because I'm diabetic, I also watch the intake of breads/grains.

Robin, I've noticed on other postings you've stated that your daughter takes plenty of vitamins. I've gone to health food stores to try their brands, but it seems like every time I take a vitamin, it raises my glucose level up to 300-400. I've asked the nutritionist and pharmacist and they think it's because of the ingredient (I can't remember the name) they use in the coating. I still haven't been able to find any vitamin that doesn't raise my glucose level.

Cindy
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:44 AM
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Interesting Cindy. I do know for other reasons that some parents wash off the coating of some of the vitamins. I think it is due to the coloring of a particular med or vitamin.

If I take vitamins on an empty stomach I get such a strange feeling. I just want to get sick and I feel clammy. Not fun. I try to eat something with it.

I would also consider non- multi vitamins. I think the multi are too big a punch to the system. I prefer for myself to target those that are specific to the needs at the moment.

Is your diabetes I or II?
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Old 09-06-2008, 12:31 PM
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I have Type 1 diabetes. But what is so interesting is that it was brought on by a drug for depression, after I had the brain surgery.
I sure wish I'd known about the alternative treatments for epilepsy before I had the surgery, then I wouldn't be the mess I am now!!

That's why I am so big on everyone questioning their doctors about side effects of any/all types of medications and getting pharmaceutical reps out of doctor's offices. Plus getting the pharmaceutical commercials off television!!
Don't let the doctors tell you they never heard of that particular side effect!! That's a bunch of BS! Just because the dr. has not heard of it, doesn't mean one may/may not experience it. Trust your own body.

Cindy
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Old 09-06-2008, 01:03 PM
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Easier said than done... when he is telling you that he really doubts that your daughters vision loss is due to the medicine. "So what do you want to do?... switch meds?" "No doctor... I don't want any meds... I want to see if the vision is a side effect of the drugs, or if there is more going on in her brain other than just seizures."

Interesting to read the doctors notes after the fact...

I do believe in trusting the body... you just have to slow down long enough to truly listen.

I found it fascinating that the foods on the list that I shouldn't be having are the ones that I crave. I need to really look into this, as I am having difficulty keeping that "freshman 15" off.
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Old 06-10-2011, 11:38 AM
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Whats it say for Rh blood type?
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Old 07-02-2011, 03:58 PM
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I gradually changed to the blood type diet over a period of months, beginning in January, and I feel incredibly better on it (type A). My overall health has definitely improved.
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Old 07-03-2011, 12:18 AM
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id never heard of this before now ..... interesting
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Old 07-03-2011, 06:06 AM
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Hi lovemyladybug,

I only heard about it in December. I went to a doctor for craniosacral therapy (she used to be a GP but decided that we really need to listen to our bodies more, so she focuses on alternative medicine now) and she recommended it. For me, cutting out read meat was the most difficult - I had that hairband headache!

I used to have a pain in my stomach after eating, but I assumed everyone else did ... it's only when I changed diet that I realised how bad the pain was ... I had got so used to it!

It takes alot of planning, but I changed gradually and I'm not a saint - I do veer off it from time to time!

I don't know if it helped my epilepsy specifically, as I haven't had a seizure in 6 yrs but overall I feel younger, which is always a nice thing! I'm also reducing my epilepsy medicine, and I think that watching what I eat definitely helps the detox.

I thought it was interesting that it's a thread here and was wondering if other people have found any benefits.
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Old 07-03-2011, 11:56 PM
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I am beginning to believe that keeping to nutritional choices that bear in mind the foods that were grown around the geographical area where your ancestors came from, has some relevance. Also living food is very important. Eating out of a box is not healthy.
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Old 07-04-2011, 01:50 PM
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Hi RobinN,

Thanks for starting this thread!

I completely agree - I try to avoid processed food, because of the ingredients and the plastic packaging. We buy our food at a farmer's market when possible, and focus on organic, especially chicken and eggs. Anyway, it's nicer to know exactly what we're eating and it actually works out less expensive in the long run, especially when (if!) we're organised.
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Old 07-04-2011, 03:19 PM
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I agree with you. Difficult when socializing Rebecca is finding out. However each time it causes discomfort, she learns a lesson.
It also saves on the amount of trash produced, I have found.
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:11 AM
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I watched a bit of the clip - v impressive!

Yes, it is difficult out socializing, and I find it's different by country. It must be especially difficult for your daughter when her friends probably want pizza and the usual teenage food. It's difficult to find no red meat + no dairy + no wheat + no processed food in a dish in a restaurant. I find that I often have to give in somehow when I'm away.

I didn't have a chance to read all of your thread on neurofeedback, but it's amazing how it works.

I did see that you mentioned selenium somewhere. That's interesting: I've been taking that as part of a multi-vitamin since last September.

I love that you're looking at the whole body. I'm trying to do the same. It's good to be in tune with our bodies. I feel I abandoned mine for years, and didn't listen to its need for sleep and nutrients enough. But now it's like there's a re-alignment or something, where I'm focusing more on the important things in life and less on career (which society leads us to believe is what's important!). Career pays the bills but I really get the importance of switching off now :-)

Thanks again for this thread and other information in other threads - it really is very helpful.
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:20 PM
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I think I've had some success with the low glycemic diet, but I'm curious about the blood type diet. When I look at the type A food recommendations they do match what I was naturally driven to (for example, no red meat, lots of whole grains & vegetables) before I began experimenting with diets for epilepsy. So I'd like to combine them somehow.

When it comes down to it, however, I think one of the major situations leading up to seizures is too much stress, like when you cross a threshold you're more susceptible. So please don't get too stressed about finding the "right" diet! I also think neurofeedback shows great promise, but it doesn't seem to be covered by many, if any, health insurance.
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