‘One Size Fits All’ Not For Dieting

Experts: Individuals Aren't The Problem; Approach Is

NEW YORK (CBS 2) – When Sharon Lewinter weighed 190 pounds, she tried every fad diet out there with little success. She just couldn’t shed the pounds.

“I was very sad. I didn’t like being that way. I had no energy and anxiety about it,” Lewinter said.

She’s far from alone. Nearly 95 percent of all dieters give up before reaching their ultimate goal, but weight loss experts believe the problem isn’t with the dieters themselves, but with their choice of diet, reports CBS 2’s Kristine Johnson.

Instead of the “one size fits all” diet plan, new research suggests that diets should actually be customized and geared specifically to an individual’s genetic make-up.

“It’s a very simple system,” said Dr. Peter D’Adamo, a diet guru and naturopathic physician.

D’Adamo found that people digest foods differently according to blood type.

If you’re a type O, he said, you’re genetically predisposed to digestion problems with certain foods like wheat and should therefore eat a diet higher in protein. Type A’s should avoid certain proteins and opt for vegetarian fare, and Type B’s should avoid foods like corn and chicken.

That’s why Lewinter had problems with her diet.

“When I heard that concept I thought, oh, that makes sense, like it makes sense why when I was trying the Atkins and it didn’t work for me, it worked for most of my friends,” said Lewinter, who has the blood type A-B.

When she found out her blood type, she learned that a high protein diet, like Atkins, was actually the worst way to lose weight for her type and she changed her diet.

A year later, she weighed 120 pounds.

“I feel more energetic than when I was in high school actually,” Lewinter said.

The blood type diet isn’t the only personalized diet. People interested in losing weight can also start a new diet based on the results of a DNA test.

“The key with this test is that out of the literally hundreds of genes that have been studied relative to weight gain and obesity, this test involves four well-documented genes where the science is very, very strong,” according to DNA testing company Interleukin Genetics.

Those genes influence metabolism and show scientists how the body processes foods like carbohydrates and fats.

With that information, Louis Denome was able to find the right diet after struggling time after time to lose weight and keep off the pounds.

“I’d lose 20 pounds and in two months put it back on,” Denome said.

After the DNA test, the lab recommends one of three diets: low carb, low fat or a combination of the two.

For Denome, it became a carb-reducing diet combined with high intensity exercise.

“Oh no,” Denome said. “My worst fear came alive.”

While genetic make-up may be the key to actual weightloss, experts say that any healthy diet should include diet and exercise.

“How much do my family history and my genes play in my ability to lose weight?” nutritionist Madelyn Fernstrom said. “The answer is it plays a little part, for some people more than others.”

Experts are also using things like fingerprint analysis and leg length measurements to help customize diets based on genetic type.

For more information on the importance of different types of diets, please click here.

More from Kristine Johnson
  • Gordon Stover McMichael

    ‘B’ Follower for 10 months. AWESOME results for me! Blood Pressure normal after 10 yrs. of struggling. Sinus, Asthma & Allergies much, much better. More energy than ever!

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  • Kivette Parkes

    Great story. I wish more people paid attention. I use the blood type diet in my practice with amazing results!

  • Eric

    Great article! I’ve been following Dr D’Adamo’s diet system successfully for almost 5 years. Would never turn back.

  • Jason

    I am an O- Hunter and have followed the blood type diet on and off over the past 8 years. I first learned about it my first year in college and did my best during that time to follow the diet. My last 6 months of college I didn’t follow the diet at all and gained almost 30lbs. My skin was terrible and I was always tired. Since graduating I have been on the diet with over 90% compliance. I lost the weight I had gained within the first year back on the diet and my energy level is back through the roof. The difference is unbelievable. I have been on the Genotype diet now for 6-months along with a recommended supplement protocol. Every time I tweak my diet I notice a difference. Everybody I know that has given the diet 3-months with at least 90% compliance turns into a total believer. Dr. D’Adamo is 20-years ahead of his time and the recognition of his accomplishments by the allopathic community is far over due.

  • Rhonda Blood Type A

    I have been a follower for over 7 years.
    My digestive tract thanks Dr. D’Adamo. Brilliant man.
    We are what we eat!

  • Jayani Weerasinghe

    I experienced an increase in my energy after going on the diet. It’s a diet that is really easy to stick to because there are so many great alternatives to choose from.

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  • Karen Type O

    I have been following the diet for 14 years, ever since Dr D’Adamo’s first book came out. I suffered from irritable bowel syndrome. Nothing helped except this and the results were were very quick. Apart fom that I am 62 and “they” say I look 50!!

  • Leanne

    Been on BTD for 11 years now. Will never go back. My Uncle is going to Dr. D’s clinic for cancer. Watch his story unfold at http://healthandhomestead.danieljkoren.com/topics/health/type-diet/uncles-cancer/

  • Sue Jenning

    Any practioner near Somerset county of NJ?

  • Becky

    Rosa, there’s plenty of information in print and online for both the BTD and Genotype diet. There’s online support, too. Following the genotype diet has nearly eliminated my migraines, and improved my sleep and overall energy.

  • Joyce Type O

    I have been on BTD 1 year & Genotype Diet for almost 2 years. I am an O & have overcome fibromyalgia pain, joint pain & huge digestion issues. I am 54 years old & feel like I used to in my 30’s. Oh & also weigh the same too.

  • Virginia O

    I’ve been following Peter D’Adamo’s recommendations for type Os for (Live Right For Your Type) for a couple of months now. I’ve lost 12 lbs, which is great, but what’s also interesting and wonderful is that I haven’t had allergy symptoms and headaches, nor stomach upsets the way I constantly did before. I used to live on Aleve, Tums, Aspiriin, and Claritin, and I haven’t taken one of any of those in weeks. Blood Type Diet is working well for me, and I plan to continue on it. Highly recommend!

  • Janis

    Janis Type O

    Vegetarianism doesn’t work for me. Not until reading Dr D’Adamo’s
    Eat Right For Your Type did I understand that as an O I need healthy meats as well as aerobic exercise. My arthritic problems have gone away completely
    and I have more energy on the blood type diet. Thank you Dr D!

  • Doubting Thomas

    This is still a one-size-fits-all diet. Even if you are blood type A, this doesn’t mean you are meant to eat all the foods listed for A’s in the Blood Type Diet. Some A’s are better suited to eating meat, some are better suited to eating mostly vegetarian, some a mixture of both to varying degrees. Then there’s the full line of supplements that he offers which is basically a money machine for him. These supplements are unnecessary if you follow a healthy diet and sensible exercise program. All people are individuals. You must find what works for you. Don’t believe the hype.

    • Colleen

      Umm, not exactly a one size fits all diet. The books break it down into 8 sizes, but they invite people to continually make it their own.
      In one way your right, if you eat (and have always eaten) a very healthy diet and are also healthy, no supplements, by any maker, would be necessary. However, if you are a person who doesn’t, or hasn’t eaten well; has digestive issues or any other ailment (or are simply aging) that eating alone just doesn’t help enough, you may require supplements.
      I’m grateful that Dr. D’Adamo cares enough to make sure the highest quality supplements are available so when people buy them they are actually absorbed by the body and help and aren’t just flushed out.
      My family and I are patients of Dr. D’Adamo’s, and I don’t think you are, because in my experience he only prescribes supplements (some of which he doesn’t make) that are truly necessary to help and only for as long as necessary. I have never known him as one who touts his own wares, he is a humble, generous man.
      I also believe, since you seem familiar with his writings, you would see in them that “All people are individuals” is what it’s all about. Hmmm, I wonder if he would have an Institute for Human Individuality if he didn’t think so?
      Maybe you need to keep reading and researching.

    • Mike

      you are correct about A’s and it’s obvious you know nothing of secretor status, A2 variants, or epigenetics.

      • mike

        I’m well aware. Congratulations…you’re not ignorant

      • Doubting Thomas

        It’s obvious you know nothing about secretor status, Mike, because that is one of the many determinations for whether or not you are Warrior vs. Explorer. Both are A’s, yet one can process meat efficiently, while the other can maintain an almost vegetarian lifestyle. Tell me something else I don’t know, genius.

  • Lori

    I went to Dr. D’Adamo and he made a diet special for me. Not only did I lose weight but my thyroid finally stabalized and am now sleeping through the night for the first time in my life. I’m now 40 btw. What is so great is how it changed my way of thinking and how I feel about myself. I’ve tried all the diets and plans, this is the one I will do forever.

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  • Phyllis

    Phyllis Type O: I’ve been with Dr. D’Adamo since 2007. After seeing my great results, my husband (Type A) jumped on the bandwagon & he also has had wonderful results.

  • Try it!

    Dr. D’Adamo’s research has helped me immensely, guiding me towards a way of eating that is so in tune with my body and mind!

  • Bruce T.

    Dr. D’Adamo’s Bllod Type Diet and the more recent Genotype have much to offer beyond just weight loss. It is a whole healthy lifestyle with answers to a lot of other real and potenrial problems.

  • Dr Patrick Gannon

    would be nice to see this “new research” published in the peer review literature.

  • DenverFoodie

    The D’Adamo protocols are not just for weight loss. As an O blood type I have experienced the elimination of nasal congestion and reduced inflammation in my joints. I sleep better and am much more flexible. It’s about quality of life.

  • Arlene aka RedLilac

    I’m a B and I stopped eating chicken in college many years ago before ever hearing of the Blood type Diet (BTD). People would laugh and tell me that it was in my head or something else when I told them I got horrible stomach aches from chicken. When I learned of the BTD, I felt vindicated. I didn’t make the connection with corn until after reading the book. I thought my stuffiness and puffed up face were allergies or a cold. Now I notice if I eat a product with hidden corn in it, I’m stuffed up for 3 days. My son is also a B, but doesn’t get sick from chicken. I’m B-, non-secretor, super taster & he’s B+, secretor, normal taster. I’ve had the SWAMI done to even further personalize my diet. It works for me.

  • Marguerite Girton

    If you want more information about Dr. D’Adamo’s work just google him! Wonderful way of life!

  • Angela Meister

    Beyond weight loss, many learning from Dr. D’Adamo are experiencing tremendous health benefits by eating for their individuality. Check out the books at the library then come on over to the website to find out more about what he’s been working on since.

    I have interviewed Sharon (the woman in the spot) for a project I am working on, and there is more to her story than simple weight loss.

    Best to you!

  • Andrea Warrior Secretor

    If you are in the NY metro area you can find a list of practitioners located at the Institute for Human Individuality (IfHI) website just google it. All are certified in individualized nutrition. I am on Long Island, NY.

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  • Diana

    I tried Atkins to Weight Watchers and I never felt good on any of them. The only diet I felt actually normal and good on is Dr. D’Adamo’s individulaized A diet for me.

  • andrea

    Dr. D’Adamo has written extensively on personalized diets, his latest book the Genotype diet is about $24.00 and will help you on your journey to individualized diet.
    No expensive tests needed. Just your blood type and some simple measurements that will help you determine your genetic history.
    A few practitioners around the country are using this system to lead clients toward wellness.

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  • Rob L

    What doctors or nutritionists in the new york metropolitain area can I go to for the dna or blood type diet?

    • Andrea Long Island

      I am a practitioner of the Blood Type/Genotype diet. Dr. D’Adamo has a practice in Connecticut.

  • Maria Lujan

    How can I figure out what other things an “O” type person should eat besides just protein. Where can I get the diet. I live in Arizona and I saw your news report.

    • Andrea Blood Type A

      Get some of Dr. D’Adamo’s books Eat Right for Your Type, Live Right for Your Type and his latest the Genotype diet. Most can be found in your local library.

  • rosa kaufman

    i would like more information

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