People have a million reasons why their diets and workout routines fail. However, one rare explanation actually holds some weight — blood type. Your blood type could play a more prominent role in your body’s recovery process than many realize.
What are the defining qualities of each blood type? What are the different blood type exercises for weight loss? Here is an answer to these questions and why your blood type is the secret to choosing a successful workout routine.
The Four Blood Types — A Quick Overview
There are four main types of human blood — A, B, AB, and O. These also fall under the positive or negative category. Blood containing the Rh protein is positive, while blood that doesn’t have the Rh protein is negative. Identifying the Rh protein is crucial for ensuring successful pregnancies and blood transfusions, but it doesn’t affect your diet or workout routine.
Your blood type’s ABO System is the main factor impacting your body’s response to food and exercise. This is the ABO layout for each type:
- Type A has anti-B antibodies and A antigens.
- Type B has anti-A antibodies and B antigens.
- Type AB has no antigens but has both anti-A and anti-B antibodies.
- Type O has A and B antigens but no antibodies.
As of 2021, the prevalence of blood types in the United States follows this order:
- O-Positive: 38%
- A-Positive: 34%
- B-Positive: 9%
- O-Negative: 7%
- A-Negative: 6%
- AB-Positive: 3%
- B-Negative: 2%
- AB-Negative: 1%
If you don’t know your blood type, dig through your medical records or visit your doctor to perform a blood sample test. In addition to helping out your diet, it’s vital information for your health. You should know your blood type in case you ever need to donate or receive blood for an operation.
The Missing Link
The proposed element linking your blood type to your diet and exercise routines is a class of proteins called lectins. Lectins are present in every living thing, from humans to single-celled organisms. According to Dr. Peter D’Adamo — the leading proponent of blood-type dieting — lectins in different blood types have different reactions to the same foods.
When you consume lectins that don’t cooperate with your blood type, they clump together and cause adverse side effects like irritable bowel syndrome and reduced blood circulation. As it sounds, these aren’t productive for your body.
But how does your blood type affect your capacity for exercise? According to Dr. Joseph Christiano, each blood type has different reactions to exercise. He believes people can tap into their genetic potential by finding a workout routine corresponding to their blood types.
To be clear, there is no direct evidence blood type affects your response to dieting and exercise. In 2013 the Belgian Red Cross reviewed 1415 references that D’Adamo, Christiano, and others cited to make their conclusions. Only one article showed a possible link between blood type and the success of a diet plan or workout routine.
Due to the lack of concrete evidence, you shouldn’t treat blood type exercise and dieting as magic elixirs. They might be more effective than your previous methods, but science can’t definitively say your blood type is the main reason. Blood type is likely one of many factors affecting your progress.
Even so, finding foods and exercises that are more agreeable to your body is a worthwhile endeavor. Here are the specifics of Type O, A, B, and AB’s ideal foods and workout plans.
Type O Diet and Workout Routine
Type O individuals most closely resemble the hunters of the ancient world. Their activity levels were brief but intense, both physically and mentally. Their diets also consisted of lots of meat, fruits, and vegetables with relatively few grains and dairy products. This diet is similar to today’s ketogenic diet, which cuts out most carbohydrates.
D’Adamo suggests people with Type O blood try high-stress training methods like weight lifting, martial arts, and other contact sports. These environments aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, so weigh your options before committing. Sprinting and distance running are also intense and effective training methods for Type O individuals.
If you choose a stressful exercise plan, you must adjust your diet accordingly. Hunters needed a high daily calorie intake to sustain their lifestyles and rebuild strength for the next hunt. You might find it helpful to cut back on snacking and devote more of your calories to pre-workout and post-workout meals.
Type A Diet and Workout Routine
According to D’Adamo, people with Type A blood have DNA resembling ancient human farmers’ genetic makeup. These farmers spent their days in constant, meticulous labor. The activities weren’t always intense, but the duration alone kept them in peak physical shape.
If you are Type A, you should largely eliminate dairy consumption to stabilize your insulin levels. You should also cut back on red meat and wheat. D’Adamo recommends replacing these foods with fish, beans, and other vegan protein sources.
Type A people should also engage in low-stress blood type exercises like walking, swimming, cycling, and yoga. These are excellent blood type exercises for weight loss because they’re time-consuming and distract your mind from food. Even better if you have a manual labor job like farming or landscaping.
Type B Diet and Workout Routine
If you have Type B blood, you resemble the ancient nomadic tribes who methodically moved from place to place. You will likely enjoy the organization and group dynamics of team sports and exercise classes. Joining a rec sports league or a cycling club at your local gym would be the Type B thing to do.
Nomads were exposed to many diseases, plants, and animals during their migrations, so Type B people can eat just about anything. Just be mindful of your body’s response as you add new foods to your diet. If you notice a negative change, stop eating it and find a substitute.
Type AB Diet and Workout Routine
People with Type AB blood contain elements of A and B. Their blood type exercises and diet plans largely depend on their individual goals. But as a general rule, AB people should stick to basic foods and activities that have proven universally effective.
You should follow a simple diet of red and white meat, dairy, grains, fruits, and vegetables. Type ABs also seem to have an affinity for seafood. If you’re a big fan of white fish, shellfish, and other ocean delicacies, you’re in luck. These foods are fantastic lean protein sources and contain the essential omega-3 fatty acids you need.
Finding the ideal blood type exercises for weight loss can be challenging for Type ABs. Try experimenting with different sports, weight training styles, and low-stress workouts. You might find a new passion or settle on a pleasant mixture of all three.
Know Your Blood Type, Unlock Your Potential
Although there isn’t much empirical evidence linking blood type to diet and lifestyle, any ethical method is worth trying. Only a handful of people achieve their fitness goals and your blood type might be the factor to put you over the top. Confirm your blood type and try the corresponding diets and exercises to unlock your genetic potential.
Author – Beth is the Managing Editor and content manager at Body+Mind. She is passionate about writing about fitness, diet, fitness, mental health, and parenting. In her spare time, Beth enjoys trying out new fitness routines and recipes.