In the 1930’s, Weston Price (dentist) began expedition around the world and disclosed the relation between modern eating habits and chronic degenerative diseases. He also discovered that there was no one diet that would be healthy for all individuals—there was too much variation in culture, genetics, heredity, environmental conditions, local produce, and climate.
In later years, William Kelley, Roger William, George Watson and others continued research in this area. They found that people’s metabolism functioned differently when it came to two factors, which are largely determined by heredity:
1) Dominance of autonomic nervous system.
This system consists of two branches. One branch known as the parasympathetic nervous system. It helps you conserve energy. It also helps you digest food. The second one is the sympathetic nervous system, is often referred to as the “fight or flight” branch. It helps you burn energy. Advocate of this diet believe that one branch tends to be stronger or more dominant than the other.
2) Rate of cellular oxidation.
This refers to the rate at which cells convert food into energy. Slow oxidizers convert food into energy at a slow rate. In order to balance their systems, it is required that they should eat mainly carbohydrates and less fats and proteins. In contrast, some folks are fast oxidizers, they quickly convert food into energy. In order to balance their system, fast oxidizers require to eat heavier fats and proteins as they burn slowly.
How to find out my metabolic type?
Famous researcher William Wolcott in his book, “The Metabolic Typing Diet” offers an easy self-test to identify your metabolic type. William states three general metabolic types, which are as following:
• Carbo types — This type people are sympathetic dominant or slow oxidizers. They generally have relatively weak appetites, eat more sweets, poor weight management, and are often dependent on caffeine.
• Protein types — Protein types are parasympathetic dominant or fast oxidizers. They tend to be frequently hungry, crave salty, fatty foods, fail with low-calorie diets, and are more likely to show nervousness, anxiety, and fatigue. They are often lethargic or “on edge”, “wired”, with superficial energy while being tired underneath.
• Mixed types — Mixed types are neither slow or fast oxidizers, and are neither sympathetic nor parasympathetic dominant. They have average appetites, cravings for starchy and sweet foods, relatively little trouble with weight control, and prone to nervousness, anxiety and fatigue.
Dietary Guidelines for These 3 Metabolic Types:
According to the metabolic typing diet, the three metabolic types should eat the following foods:
• Carbo types should have diets that are low in protein, fats, and oils, and high in carbohydrates. They should eat simple low-purine proteins.
• Protein types should have diets that are rich in protein, fats and oils, and high-purine proteins like beef, and organ meats such as beef liver, pete, chicken liver. Carbohydrates intake should be low.
• Mixed types should have a mixture of high purine proteins, high-fat and low-fat, low-purine proteins like nuts, tofu, yogurt, eggs, and cheese. Mixed metabolic type requires balance in ratios of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
Benefits of metabolic typing diet:
As compared with other types of diets that support the same plan for everyone, this diet recognizes that we are individual. Our metabolism differ, so our diet should also be different.
This typing theory may help to explain why some people do better on a low carb, high protein diet, while others do better on a high carb diet.
• High Fat, High Protein Diet (e.g. Hamptons Diet, Atkins Diet)—This diet is suitable for protein types. However, in mixed and carbo types, a high fat, high protein diet can increase fat storage by disturbing cellular oxidation, and lower metabolic rate by creating a shortage of glucose caused by low carb intake. It may also disturb thyroid and adrenal function.
• Low Fat, High Carb Diet—This diet is suitable for carbo types. However, in mixed and protein types, a low fat, high carb diet can increase fat storage by increasing insulin, and lower metabolic rate by breaking down muscle tissue due to insufficient protein intake, and may disrupt thyroid and adrenal function.
• 40-30-30 Diet (e.g. Zone diet) — This diet is suitable for mixed type. However, a 40-30-30 diet can increase fat storage by disturbing oxidation. It can lower metabolic rate by creating a shortage of glucose in carbo types and a shortage of protein in proteins types, both resulting in muscle breakdown.
What precautions should I take with this diet?
Critics believe that the metabolic typing diet is rich in organ meats, pate, and saturated animal fats is unhealthy.