Ancient Grains Right for Your Blood Type
Foodies know that ancient grains are having a superstar moment at hot restaurants all over the globe. What they don’t know (unless, of course, they follow the Blood Type Diet) is that Dr. D’Adamo was promoting the benefits of ancient grains even before he published Eat Right for Your Type in 1996! If you’re just learning about the trend and discovering these ancient grains, we’re here to give you the scoop on which ancient grains are right for your Blood Type and how to in”grain” them into your daily diet!
Kamut – The name “kamut” comes from the ancient Egyptian word for “wheat.” Considered by some to be the great-great grandfather of grains, kamut is a variety of high-protein wheat that has never been hybridized. Thirty-six kernels were brought to Montana in the late 1940s. Kamut’s kernels are two to three times the size of most wheat. Not only does this grain have a deliciously nutty flavor, but it also has a higher nutritional value than its modern-day counterparts. In the United States, kamut is often used in pastas, puffed cereal and crackers. Kamut is a neutral for Blood Type O and Blood Type A (secretors and non-secretors) and an avoid for Blood Type B and Blood Type AB (secretors and non-secretors)
Millet – Though America cultivates this cereal grass almost exclusively for fodder and bird seed, millet is a staple for almost 1/3 of the world’s population, particularly in disadvantaged regions of Asia and Africa. There are many varieties of millet, most of which are rich in protein. Millet has a bland flavor that lends itself well as a background to other seasonings. It’s prepared like rice by boiling it in water and is used to make hot cereal and dishes like PILAF. Ground millet is used as a flour to make puddings, breads and cakes. Millet can be found in Asian markets and health-food stores. Millet is Beneficial for Blood Type B and Blood Type B (secretors and non-secretors) and Neutral for Blood Types A and O (secretor and non-secretors).
Quinoa – Although quinoa is still new to the American market, it was a staple of the ancient Incas, who called it “the mother grain.” To this day it’s an important food in South American cuisine. Hailed as the “supergrain of the future,” quinoa contains more protein than any other grain. It’s considered a complete protein because it contains all eight essential amino acids. Quinoa is also higher in unsaturated fats and lower in carbohydrates than most grains, and it provides a rich and balanced source of vital nutrients. Tiny and bead-shaped, the ivory-colored quinoa cooks like rice (taking half the time of regular rice) and expands to four times its original volume. Its flavor is delicate, almost bland, and has been compared to that of couscous. Quinoa is lighter than but can be used in any way suitable for rice – as part of a main dish, a side dish, in soups, in salads and even in puddings. It’s available packaged as a grain, ground into flour and in several forms of pasta. Quinoa can be found in most health-food stores and supermarkets. Quinoa is a neutral for all blood types.
Buckwheat – A native of Russia, buckwheat is thought of as a cereal, but is actually an herb of the genus Fagopyrum. The triangular seeds of this plant are used to make buckwheat flour, which has an assertive flavor and is used for pancakes and as an addition to some baked goods. The famous Russian blini (thin, crepe-like pancakes) are made with buckwheat flour. Buckwheat groats are the hulled, crushed kernels, which are usually cooked in a manner similar to rice. Groats come in coarse, medium and fine grinds. Kasha, which is roasted buckwheat groats, has a toastier, more nutty flavor. Buckwheat is Beneficial for Blood Type A secretors, Neutral for Blood Type A non-secretors, Avoid for Blood Types B and AB (secretors and non-secretors), Neutral for Blood Type O secretors and an avoid for Blood Type O non-secretors.
Amaranth – Once considered a simple weed in the United States, this nutritious annual is finally being acknowledged as the nourishing high-protein food it is. Amaranth greens have a delicious, slightly sweet flavor and can be used both in cooking and for salads. The seeds are used as cereal or can be ground into flour for bread. Amaranth seeds and flour can be found in health-food stores, as well as in some Caribbean and Asian markets. Beneficial for Blood Types A & AB (secretors and non-secretors), Neutral for Blood Type O (secretors and non-secretors), and Blood Type B non-secretors. Amaranth is an avoid for Blood Type B secretors.
Teff – Native to northern Africa, teff is a miniscule (about 1/32 inch in diameter) cereal grain. It’s been a staple of Ethiopia for eons and is now being grown in the United States in Idaho. The mildly nutty-flavored teff is high in protein and carbohydrates and a good source of calcium and iron. It can be found in some health-food stores. Teff is a Neutral for Blood Type A non-secretors, an avoid for Blood Type A secretors, an Avoid for Blood Types B and AB (secretors and non-secretors) and Neutral for Blood Type O (secretors and non-secretors).
Spelt – Native to southern Europe, where it’s been used for millenniums, spelt is an ancient cereal grain that has a mellow nutty flavor. The easily digestible spelt has a slightly higher protein content than wheat and can often be tolerated by those with wheat allergies. Spelt flour, available in health-food stores and most grocery stores, can be substituted for wheat flour in baked goods. Spelt is Neutral for all blood types except Blood Type O non-secretors.
Farro – Farro is the Italian name for emmer wheat, an ancient strain of hard wheat from the Fertile Crescent in western Asia. Often confused with spelt due to their similar taste and texture, farro is delicious as a hot breakfast cereal and in soups, salads, side dishes, and and even desserts. One preparation that everyone loves is farrotto—farro cooked like risotto – buon appetito! Farro is Neutral for all blood types except Blood Type O non-secretors.
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