Are we metabolically different? So says William Wolcott in his book, The Metabolic Typing Diet.
A discussion from the Native Nutrition Yahoo group as well as my nutrition consulting coursework prompted me to look into MT. I was curious: could we actually look at nutritional therapy for people based on their individual metabolic types and could there actually be major differences? So, here's my opinions on what I've researched so far...
Wolcott (2000, p. 17) mentions: "When optimum energy is available to your body on all levels -- to your cells, organs, glands, and systems -- then optimum (balanced and efficient) functioning, or good health, is possible." He feels that depending on your metabolic type, the foods (macronutrients: protein, carbohydrates, and fats) that make your body run efficiently will not necessarily be the same foods that help someone else. This metabolic type is dependent on several factors: autonomic, endocrine, oxidative, acid/alkaline, prostaglandin, electrolyte, blood, consititutional, and catabolic/anabolic types. All of these factors affect how quickly your body metabolizes what you eat (as well as what you drink, feed your skin/hair, breathe, etc.)
To boil it down to a nutshell, after you complete the questionnaire in the book, you end up fitting into one of three categories: Protein Type, Carbo Type, or Mixed Type (a little of both Protein and Carbo Types). This seems a little too simplistic for me, but perhaps it is that simple? I am concerned that with all the various factors mentioned in the previous paragraph, there are only three types.
Dr. Ross Hauser has also created a metabolic typing diet using animals (lions, bears, otters, monkeys, and giraffes - oh my!) to identify varying optimal levels of protein, carbs, fats, and even vegetarian tendencies for one type. You can take a test online at http://www.hauserdiet.com/ to see which type you are. I fell into the otter category (modified high protein diet with emphasis on greens). I think otters are cool animals, so it's fun that I eat like one! My DH turned out to be a monkey with a balanced diet, and he generally doesn't need to eat as much protein as I do.
Interesting stuff... I definitely have more to read!
Wolcott, W. (2000). The Metabolic typing diet: the ultimate guide to: premanent weight loss and optimum health, high energy and peak athletic performance, preventing and reversing disease, staying young at any age. New York: Doubleday.