Following up on our initial post on blood work and blood chemistry, the Alchemists continue drawing biohacking inspiration from blood panels and bio-chemical markers to better illuminate a measurable and discernible path toward hacking individual biologies.
BLOOD WORK TO IDENTIFY SLIGHT INTOLERANCES
So, we left off talking about blood sugar, foods, and inflamation. Continuing with that vein of thought, when your body doesn’t process certain foods or is slightly intolerant to some foods, the inflammation levels will go up which can be seen at different inflammatory markers. Two markers in particular are blood sugar levels and or cholesterol levels which are also likely to increase.
Talking about food often gets folks real heated and polarized. Some foods work wonders for a particular cohort and cause havoc for other cohorts. As such, the alchemists are hesitant to throw up a food infographic here as it is certainly not a one size fits all and food should be approached with careful consideration.
What are the factors you may be considering when evaluating inflammation, foods, blood biomarkers, and hacking your biology for optimal performance? Good question. To start off with, you should gain an understanding of your baseline and where your current inflammation levels are at; furthermore, it would also be advisable to explore elimination diets to better grok your personal responses. We will talk more in depth about diet (macro and micro nutrients later on).
One thing to consider, which is often overlooked is lectin sensitivity. The video below is an in depth presentation on lectins, feel free to skim on down to the bullet points below for a high level notes on lectins and blood.
There is a chemical reaction which takes place between the blood and the foods we eat. This reaction is a primary consequence of genetic inheritance, what does that mean? Well, our immune and digestive systems behave more favorably when exposed to foods that specific "blood type" ancestors consumed.
Citing Dr. Peter D'Adamo and Catherine Whitney:
Lectins, abundant and diverse proteins found in foods, have agglutinating properties that affect your blood and the lining of your digestive tract. Lectins are a powerful way for organisms in nature to attach themselves to other organisms in nature. Lots of germs, and even our own immune systems, use this super glue to their benefit. For example, cells in our liver’s bile ducts have lectins on their surfaces to help snatch up bacteria and parasites. Bacteria and other microbes have lectins on their surfaces as well, which work rather like suction cups, so that they can attach to the slippery mucosal linings of the body. Often the lectins used by viruses or bacteria can be blood type specific, making them a stickier pest for people of that blood type.
WHAT FOODS CONTAIN LECTINS?
The short answer here is basically all plants and animal products to varying degrees. Nonetheless, lectins are concentrated more in some sources than others. Foods with the highest lectin activity include:
- grains of all kinds (especially wheat)
- legumes (especially soy)
- nightshade plants (e.g. eggplant, tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, etc.)
- oils and other derivative products from the aforementioned food sources.
- GMO foods
You're asking, well how does blood play into food and lectins? So, let's pause here and take a look at a few general foods that comprise of problem lectins for speific blood types, the table below is but a very brief outline to get you familar.
|Type A||Type B||Type AB||Type O|
People with lectin sensitivity tend to have:
- Higher Adiponectin (over 16) (R)
- Higher TNF-alpha (over 3) (R)….Found in Th1/Th2/Th17 Panel.
- Higher IL-6 (over 3)- Dr Gundry has independently noticed this with his lectin sensitive patients. Found in Th1/Th2/Th17 Panel.
- Lower White Blood Cells (under 5)
- Low free and total T3 (under 3 for free T3) and often higher TSH. Low T3 is a cause and a symptom of lectin sensitivity. Low T3 is because of inflammation and oxidative stress. Dr Gundry claims that the thyroid tissue is remarkably similar to the lectin proteins and our immune systems get fooled…So we’ll start attacking our own thyroid tissue.
- Lower Ferritin (under 70 for men and under 50 for women). Lectins seem to create an inflammatory environment in the gut that reduces iron absorption.
- Lower Insulin (under 4)- in the lectin sensitive who aren’t also leptin resistant.
THE "DUCT TAPE" OF THE BODY
(AND WHY IT'S NECESSARY FOR PROPER NEUROTRANSMITTER FUNCTIONALITY)
Okay, so shifting to another classic blood marker, let us look to cholesterol which is very crucial for brain health and for creating all the hormones and neurotransmitters for the body. Inflamation is a primary culprit of brain fog, and if you're in need of a refresher or an intro on brain fog and what it is, check out the "What is Brain Fog" post by our Alchemists.
There must be an adequate amount of cholesterol to allow any hormonal process to happen in the body. Our brains are about 60% fat and lowering the cholesterol level can cause your brain health, the ability to learn and remember things, motivation, and tension to be altered as it quickly changes the brain's biochemistry.
Cholesterols acts like a duct tape in the body. It floats around and repairs damages to recreate tissues, and if a person doesn’t have adequate level of cholesterol, it can lead to chronic health problems.
BAD VS. GOOD CHOLESTEROL
LDL or so-called Bad Cholesterols are cholesterols taking it from the liver and brings it into tissues of the body. While the HDL (good cholesterol) cholesterol brings the cholesterol back to live from tissues recycling)
Fat is a very efficient energy because it can provide a lot more energy than just sugar. Stay tuned on this topic, the Alchemist research team will be distilling further information for readers and fellow biohackers alike.
To round out the end of this article on blood chemistry, let's check out this clip on good vs. bad cholesterol.
Way to go fellow alchemists...You're on your way to gaining the knowledge needed to hack your biology. Modern AlkaMe's data platform engineers are working diligently to integrate with national and international blood laboratories with the goal of providing more robust and precise nootropic recommendations for users.