Since the discovery of blood groups in 1901, doctors have been wondering what our blood group is telling us about.
Recent research shows that your blood type influences whether you will get certain diseases. And one blood type gives better predictions than all the others.
The four most important blood groups are distributed evenly throughout the earth. But there are also regional differences. For example, many Latin Americans have blood group 0, and most Scandinavians have blood group A.
Blood group 0 is the king of blood groups
If you have blood group 0, then you can look forward statistically to a life without cancer, memory loss or heart problems.
Research has shown that people with blood group A, B and AB are 15% more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than those with blood group 0. In addition, it seems that blood group 0 also protects your body against cancer.
This is probably due to the fact that blood groups A, B and AB can cause the immune system to work overtime, so that you can slowly develop cancer, while blood group is 0 milder for your body.
AB can cause memory problems
Another startling study shows that blood group AB gives a whopping 82% more risk of memory problems than other blood groups.
The researchers explain that your blood type determines how and how easily your blood clots. One blood clots better than another, which is handy if you have a wound, but you can also get a blood clot earlier - and therefore problems with your memory.
Blood groups classified by antigens
- The system that divides the four main blood groups is called 'AB0' and assumes that the surface of some red blood cells is covered with different antigens, or carbohydrates, called A or B, while others have no antigens at all (0).
- Another blood group system, rhesus, roughly divides the blood groups into those with antibodies D (rhesus-positive) and those without (rhesus-negative). That is why they are usually referred to as eight blood groups: A, B, AB and 0, in the version resusive or resusive.
- It is important to know your rhesus factor, because mixing two blood groups can cause serious complications for people who are rhesus negative.