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Does Your Blood Type Put You At Risk?

By Expert HERWriter
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Infertility / Fertility related image Photo: Getty Images

Do you know your blood type? As someone who is blood type O, I am vaguely familiar with certain foods or exercises that are better for my health but had not looked further into the correlation between being an ‘O’ and other risks or benefits.

There are four blood types, O, A, B, and AB. The majority of people in the United States are blood type O (about 45 percent) followed by blood type A (about 40 percent) then blood type B (about 10 percent) and blood type AB (about 5 percent). All of the blood types can receive O negative blood, as it is known as the universal donor.

According to some research, knowing your blood type could be important in different areas of your health. For example, did you know:

1. Blood types A, B, and AB are at higher risk for pancreatic cancer as compared to blood type O. Specifically, blood type B were the highest at 72 percent more likely, followed by AB at 51 percent and type A at 32 percent.

2. Blood type O women are at a higher risk for low ovarian reserve (less eggs) compared to women with type A that has the highest reserve.

3. Blood type AB’s have better outcomes after a coronary artery bypass graft (CABG).

4. Blood type O’s have less venous thromboembolism risks.

5. Blood type O’s have less clotting factor issues (such as von Willebrand factor) compared to type AB at the highest risk.

6. Blood type O’s have a higher risk for ulcers.

7. Blood type A’s have a higher risk for gastric cancer.

8. Bloody type O’s have less risk for ischemic heart disease and atherosclerosis.

9. Blood type A’s have a higher risk for gingivitis whereas Blood type O’s has a higher risk for periodontitis.

10. Blood type O’s are more likely to survive malaria, but have a severe infection with cholera and Norwalk virus (acute gastroenteritis). Blood type B’s have a decreased risk of Norwalk infection.

Does this mean your blood type guarantees your protection or risk of certain disease? Absolutely not. You also have to take into account your lifestyle habits (diet, exercise, smoking, alcohol), environmental factors and genetics. However it is interesting information to factor into your health.


1. Blood Type, Pancreatic Cancer Risk Linked. Web. 16 November, 2011.

2. Implications of Blood Type for Ovarian Reserve. Web. 16 November, 2011.

3. Blood Type May Influence Survival Following CABG Surgery. Web. 16 November, 2011.

4. Blood Groups and Red Cell Antigens: Chapter 5, The ABO Blood Group. Web. 16 November, 2011.

5. The Effect of ABO Blood Types on Periodontal Status. Web. 16 November, 2011.

6. The relationship between blood groups and disease. Web. 16 November, 2011.

7. Norwalk Virus Infection and Disease Is Associated with ABO Histo-Blood Group Type. Web. 16 November, 2011.

Reviewed November 16, 2011
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith

Add a Comment2 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

I wish i would have know this about 20 years ago. I am blood type O and have just found out at the age of 42 that I am post menopausal already. my fsh level is 105.5. i have had 3 miscarriages and 3 chemical pregnancies. i am in good health and weight. at least now i have some type of answer as to why i have no children. did not start trying to conceive until the age of 38.

March 22, 2012 - 7:52pm

Very interesting information. I had no idea this type of data was tracked.

November 16, 2011 - 6:39pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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