Cucumbers made the news headline when Gwyneth Paltrow’s health website Goop was ridiculed for warning against the crunchy vegetable that many people love to put in their salad or eat right off the bat. A 2017 article on Goop claimed that cucumbers could cause dementia.
While I absolutely do not stand for the type of hype and monetization espoused by Paltrow’s wellness enterprise, I do want to point out that there is actual science backing this claim up. In fact, a couple of experts have issued statements that backed up the claim.
The scientific basis I am talking about can be summed up with the concept of “lectins.” This is one of the main foundations of the Blood Type Diet and was discovered by Dr. Peter D’Adamo more than two decades ago. According to his observations, the interactions between lectins from the food we eat and our blood, gut as well as internal organs play a big role in disease manifestations. Dr. D’Adamo’s groundbreaking discovery is that such interactions are blood-type specific.
What Exactly Are Lectins?
Lectins are not only found in can be found in cucumbers, tomatoes and whole grains, as mentioned by Goop’s Dr Steven Gundry. In fact, most foods, including grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, seafood and meat, contain lectins. Not all lectins are considered “friends” or “foes” by your body. Depending on your blood type and genetics, a particular lectin may cause a certain reaction once entered into your bloodstream.
In the case of the now-infamous cucumber, its lectins are harmful to Type Os but are, in fact, beneficial to Type AB.
So what do “enemy lectins” do in your body? They may clump or bind to your blood cells, eventually destroying them. Alternately, when they enter the digestive tract, they can cause inflammation of the mucous linings and mimic many of the symptoms of food allergies.
When a certain lectin from food is regarded as “enemy” lectin (incompatible with specific blood type), red blood cells clump up in a process known as “agglutination.” If the same lectin enters the bloodstream day in and day out, systemic inflammation results, leading to chronic and various other types of diseases.
That is why it is so important to completely stay away from the foods that are considered “avoids” for your blood type, especially when you are trying to heal from certain diseases or ailments.
Following an individualized diet based on your blood type can therefore protect you from the harmful effects of dietary lectins.
The following video gives a very good explanation of what lectins are and what they do to the body. Have a look!
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If you find this article useful and you’d like more just like it, sign up for my Eat Right with Louisa Newsletter. You’ll receive a free mini-email course on How to Eat Your Way to Optimal Health. It teaches you how to choose the right food that is tailored for your unique body type–based on Dr. D’Adamo’s principle of lectins, so you will reach your health goals in the most efficient way without wasting any effort or money.
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