Everyone who posts the diet is quoting an article by Stephen Marini. There are a number of reasons to think Marini is a quack. For starters, he's a chiropractor, and immunology and hematology are way outside his scope of practice. He claims that the diet works by cleansing the blood.
Which makes no sense.
Rh+ individuals HAVE rhesus factor in their blood. It's genetic.
Rh- individuals DO NOT HAVE rhesus factor in their blood. This is also genetic.
You can't cleanse the blood of something that isn't there.
It is far more likely that people who have "changed" their blood type have fallen prey to a laboratory error that misread their blood type on one of the two occasions on which they were tested than that their blood type actually changed.
The diet is as follows:
1. Changing their diet and eliminating all sugar, white flour, caffeine,
sodas, processed foods, and alcohol.
2. Using a lower bowel tonic and occasional colonics to keep the bowel
3. Use of herbs to cleanse the blood such as:
B. Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
C. A tea made from red clover blossoms, chaparral, licorice root,poke
peach bark, Oregon grape root, stillingia, cascara sagrada,sarsparilla,
prickly ash bark, burdock root, and buckthorn bark.
D. A few capsules of: goldenseal root, blessed thistle, cayenne,
cramp bark, false unicorn root, ginger, red raspberry leaves, squaw vine
and uva ursi.
And a few capsules of: black cohosh, sarsparilla, ginseng, licorice,
false unicorn, holy thistle and squaw vine.
4. Also, included in the diet blood builders, such as grape juice,
molasses, beets, and others.
Step by step, here are the problems with it:
Item 1 - Which sugars are the problem? Truly eliminating all sugars would kill you. Even if you assume he means all refined sugars, and naturally occurring sugars are OK, the rest of this item indicates that this is an expensive, calorie restricted diet. That's OK if you want to lose weight, but it won't affect your blood type.
Item 2 - Why are "improve your life/change the way your body works" diet types so hung up on the colon? Frequent bowel movements and a "clear" gut aren't going to do anything to your blood at all. If there is a lot of blood in your bowel movements, you should seek immediate medical attention. Also, diarrhea can be dangerous for pregnant women. So this diet is DANGEROUS for a whole bunch of people who might feel they have an urgent need to change their blood type. In any case, the problem that causes hemolytic disease of the newborn is with the immune system, not the digestive system.
Item 3 - Black cohosh causes contractions and is used as an abortificent. Fine if you're not pregnant. Potentially risky if you are pregnant and don't want to be. Really, really bad if you are pregnant and would like to remain so for 40 weeks. Also, that's a LOT of medicinal herbs. I don't know a lot of those. I would be deeply concerned about how they would interact, if any of them cause bleeding or interfere with clotting, and if they might cause diarrhea. I know licorice causes diarrhea. Cayenne is a common feature in "negative calorie" diets popular among bulemics. You might feel like you're undergoing a life-altering experience on all those, but if you do you're really just sick and should stop taking so many damn drugs.
Seriously, if a medical doctor proposed that a pregnant women needed to take THIRTY different medications (or a nursing woman, or any woman not undergoing chemotherapy, and even then I think that number is large) we would all freak out. That's a TON of stuff with side effects and potential problems with interactions, and safety issues for the fetus/nursing babe/patient herself. Medicinal herbs got a reputation for working because they also have measurable effects on the body, not all of which are considered desirable in all patients, and taking 30 different herbs at once should also be a scary idea.
Despite the risks of combining all of these (to me, mysterious) substances, they definitely will not irradiate your bone marrow and alter your DNA, which is what it would take to change your blood type.
Item 4 - Grape juice, molasses, and beets won't hurt you, though they do contradict the sugars and processed foods prohibition in item 1. All those things were once considered blood builders because of the Law of Signs that prevailed in medieval medicine - they look kinda like blood in color or texture. Medieval folk healers did discover some things that are genuinely helpful. The idea that beets, molasses, and grape juice (or red wine - also popular) helped with blood loss, or blood infections, or the immune system isn't among them.
ETA: While a description of the diet was on the same page as Marini's article, Marini did not create or recommend the diet described here. I have corrected this misattribution in post 63 on this thread.
Edited by stik - 3/9/11 at 1:27pm