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Metabolic Typing Nonsense

I Analyze the Metabolic Type Diet Fad and Prove, Once and For All That It's a Bunch of Nonsense

© 2006, Roger Haeske

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Recently I had a raw coaching client ask me what I thought about a certain new Metabolic Typing Diet book. I explained to him that I don't believe in any kind of metabolic typing diet system.

These diets are the kind that give different diet recommendations depending on what kind of body type you have. For instance, someone classified as a "slow oxidizer" would eat a diet based on 50% carbohydrates, 30-35% protein and 10-15% fat. However someone classified as a "fast oxidizer" would eat a diet of 30% carbohydrates, 50% protein and 20% fat.

Note that both of these diet's protein recommendations are far beyond what is possible to achieve on a whole food, raw vegan diet. I'll show you extensive proof below.

Mind you, I used to (unsuccessfully) follow a raw food metabolic typing diet for several years and one in which there were actually four different kinds of metabolic typing. The book recommending this diet is over 800 pages long. You need a Ph.D. just to figure out what you should be eating on a daily basis.

According to this book, I should be eating 700% more protein than I've been eating since I've been 100% raw. Seems crazy to me since I am the most muscular I have ever been in my life.

One of the systems used in the book is Ayurveda. According to that system and my Vata body type, I shouldn't be able to thrive on a raw food diet. I need cooked foods to stay warm and balance my Vata tendencies. {Note: To his credit, the author does state he believes Vata's can go 100% raw. He's basically admitting that Ayurveda is flawed.}

There are at least two metabolic typing systems in the book that I am completely breaking. According to this author, I should be failing miserably in my current raw diet. I am a "Fast Oxidizer," and according to this book need 50% of my daily calories to come from protein.

I Thought To Myself... This Is Ridiculous

I always wondered when I first read the book, why some things didn't make sense. I could never figure out how to get the amounts of protein he recommended for people of my body and constitution type.

But these days, after an intense study of nutrition, his mistakes became obvious to me. Several of the facts and numbers in the book, simply didn't add up.

In any case, no animals eat a diet based on their metabolic type, blood type, etc. Actually, our largest genetic differences are between males and females. So maybe we should have a different diet based on our sex. Not!

The real proof that a metabolic typing diet is nonsense comes from a simple idea. If it were natural for us to vary our diets depending on metabolic type, then mother's milk should be quite a bit different for each human mother. Some mother's should be producing milk that has 50% of it's calories from protein while other's should be in the 20% range and yet others 10%.

Human mother's milk ranges anywhere from 2 to 8% protein. The disparity has more to do with the age of the baby as opposed to different mothers. The older the baby gets the less protein there is in the milk. Humans have just about the lowest protein needs of all mammals.

In this article, I'm going to analyze some dietary recommendations made in a prominent raw food diet book that recommends a metabolic type diet. You are going to be shocked at how wrong this book is. I'm willing to bet that many of my readers have this book.

When I started reading this information, I was flabbergasted at the complete lack of understanding of the most basic concepts of nutrition. I was clearly able to see that the author never actually calculated how someone would get the necessary amount of protein, carbohydrates and fats on his diet.

The Numbers Don't Compute

He simply made up the numbers, without doing the math. No one has ever lived his recommendations, therefore they don't mean anything. Do you really want to follow such unscientific, unsound and unhealthy diet advice?

Just because someone is an M.D. and quotes scientific studies, doesn't in any way mean that what he is saying is accurate. Unfortunately, I was duped by this program for several years and it made it next to impossible for me to go 100% raw for more than a couple of months at a time.

I am not knocking all the information in this book, because there is quite a bit of valuable information about nutrition in general. But I simply would not follow the recommended diet, as it is a diet that never even existed in nature and is unhealthy for humans.

You Won't Believe These Recommendations

According to this book, "The high-protein diet person requires about 50% protein." On a raw vegan diet, of whole foods this number is next to impossible to achieve, unless you are willing to spend over $182 a day on your food, and eat only one kind of food.

There simply is no raw vegan food that is even 50% protein. The closest thing I found was Spirulina. Here's the nutritional breakdown of Spirulina.

Protein: 48%
Carbohydrates: 30%
Fat: 22%

Whether Spirulina a protist, really is a vegan food is debatable. Some scientists classify Spirulina as a type of animal or combination animal/plant.

Since this is the highest protein raw 'vegan' food in existence, then in order to get a total of just 48% of your calories from protein a person would have to consume a diet solely of Spirulina. On a 2,500 calorie a day diet, that would require the consumption of 58 ounces of Spirulina at a cost of $182 per day.

Of course, you couldn't eat anything else, otherwise your protein percentage would go way down. Does this diet recommendation make any sense to you?

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It' Gets Even Worse

Here's another quote from the book, "The basic way that we increase the ratio of protein intake is with a variety of seed or nut pâtés."

This shows a complete lack of understanding by this author regarding this topic. Nuts and seeds don't have anywhere close to 50% protein content. Nuts and seeds are much higher in fat content than protein. No person could even come close to getting 50% of their calories from protein even if they only ate raw nut and seed pâtés.

Here are The Macro Nutrient Numbers for Some Nuts and Seeds

Almonds: Note protein is the lowest nutrient in this food.

Protein: 13%
Carbohydrates: 14%
Fats: 73%

Fats are more than 550% higher in almonds than protein. This is a fat dominant food, not a protein dominant food.

Cashews: They have double the level of carbohydrates than protein.

Protein: 11%
Carbohydrates: 23%
Fats: 66%

Sunflower Seeds: Fats are 520% higher than protein in this food.

Protein: 14%
Carbohydrates: 13%
Fats: 73%

Brazil Nuts:

Protein: 8%
Carbohydrates: 7%
Fats: 85%

Pine Nuts:

Protein: 7%
Carbohydrates: 8%
Fats: 85%

Do you see these numbers? There are no whole, raw vegan, high protein foods, unless you consider Spirulina. Even raw beans don't come anywhere close to 50% protein content. Plus I tried living on only raw beans. I could only do it for a day or two. After a while the gas, bloating, diarrhea and indigestion became unbearable.

Even this author of the high protein raw diet, did not recommend raw beans as a good source of protein because so many people have problems with them.

Sprouted Raw Lentils:

Protein: 21%
Carbohydrates: 75%
Fats: 4%

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Sample Diet Numbers:

Imagine if one day you ate a diet of 2 large apples and oranges, 1 head of romaine lettuce and the rest of your calories coming from a mixture of 7 ounces of sunflower seeds and 1 cup of almonds and making up a caloric intake of 2,477 calories. Note the bulk of the calories, 79%, come from the sunflower seeds and the almonds or 1952 calories.

Here's what the nutrient breakdown would be.

Protein: 15%
Carbohydrates: 20%
Fats: 65%

If any so called raw food expert ever tells you to eat nuts and seeds because they are a protein food, realize these experts are simply wrong. Unfortunately, I know several raw food gurus who claim this. These are first and foremost high fat foods. In some of these foods, protein is actually the lowest macronutrient. These authors simply never calculated the numbers.

On a whole food, raw vegan diet, your choices are high fat, low fat and a mixture of fat and carbohydrates, never high protein. Protein will always be under 20% of your calories consumed, unless you want to eat a diet of Spirulina only at $182 per day.

I hope this article taught you three things. One that any kind of metabolic diet theory, regardless of what it is, or how convincing it sounds, just doesn't make sense. Two that there are no high-protein, raw vegan diets, no matter who tells you this. Third, to be careful of what you read. Some raw food gurus, regardless of their credentials, or how scientific they sound, simply don't know what they are talking about.

To Your Radiant Health, Happiness and Fitness, Roger Haeske

P.S. Humans don't need more than 10% protein. In fact, most do just fine on 5 to 8% protein. Too much protein is unhealthy.

If you want to learn how to succeed on a raw food diet that actually works and with numbers that make sense, then consider joining my raw food coaching and support website

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