I’m writing to address some of the nutrition information given by Elizabeth Lowe in the Oct. 20 article “Breakfast fixer-upper for all day.”

As a master’s degree student in human nutrition, it concerns me that a professional in public administration is being quoted as a nutrition expert. While advocating eating a healthy breakfast full of variety and nutritionally dense foods is sound advice, the two diets Ms. Lowe advocates, “The Zone” and the “Eat For Your Blood Type Diet,” are questionable.

Ms. Lowe fails to mention the detrimental side effects associated with the diets: increased risk for kidney failure, heart disease, cancer and other diseases are associated with low carbohydrate diets such as The Zone. This is because The Zone uses fat instead of carbohydrate as the body’s primary fuel source and the human body is not set up to work that way.

The concepts behind The Zone could sound reasonable to someone unfamiliar with fat and carbohydrate metabolism. However, scientific research has not shown that this diet works and the long-term effects on the body are unknown.

Yes, weight loss can occur with this diet, but this is due to decreased caloric intake, not decreased carbohydrate intake. The same is true with the Eat For Your Blood Type Diet.

Choosing foods based on blood type is a concept based on the idea that what our ancestors ate determined their blood type. This idea, again, has not been proven by scientific research. This diet could deprive individuals of entire food groups depending on their blood type, robbing organs of essential nutrients.

As a student of nutrition, I think it is important to refer to sound scientific research when making dietary recommendations and get dietary advice from nutrition professionals. The best diet advice may not be flashy but is supported by major health organizations: eat a wide variety from each of the five food groups, low in fat, saturated fat, and increased fiber accompanied with routine physical activity.

Cara Meece, Augusta

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