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Your Blood Type May Put You At Risk For These "Deadly" Diseases

Your blood type may have real implications for your health.

You're born with your blood type, which is determined by which antibodies are present on the surface of blood cells. Most of us don't think too much about it. But science is discovering that your blood type may have real implications for your health, potentially raising your risk of serious disease from COVID to cancer. Read on to find out more—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You May Have Already Had COVID.


It Might Affect Your COVID Risk

Infected patient in quarantine lying in bed in hospital

A study published last March in The Annals of Internal Medicine found that people with type O blood may have a 12% lower risk of testing positive for COVID and a 13% lower risk of developing severe COVID-19 or dying from the disease. In a different study published that month, researchers from Harvard University and Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI) found that those with Type A blood are more likely to become infected with COVID. That blood type seems to provide a "stickier" surface for the virus's spike proteins to cling to. 

RELATED: 7 Signs of Long COVID, Says Dr. Fauci


It Might Affect Your Cancer Risk

woman in bed suffering from cancer

In a study published earlier this year in BMC Cancer, researchers looked at genotyping data from thousands of residents of China. They found that people with blood type AB were 34% more likely to develop esophageal cancer, compared to people with type O blood. Additionally, researchers found that people with AB blood had a 44% higher risk of stomach cancer, and people with type A blood had a 37% higher risk. The researchers aren't sure why this may be and have called for more studies.

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It May Put You At Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

african woman feeling menstrual cyclic breast pain, touching her chest,

Having a non-O blood type (meaning A, B and AB) puts you at higher risk for heart disease. That's because of the ABO gene, which is present in people with A, B, or AB blood types. It makes red blood cells of those types stickier and more resistant to blood flow. One study found that people with type A or B blood were 51% more likely to develop blood clots in the veins and 47% more likely to develop blood clots in the lungs. 

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It Might Affect Your Dementia Risk

Senior Hispanic Man Suffering With Dementia Trying To Dress

According to a study published in Neurology, people with AB blood are 82 percent more likely to develop the thinking and memory problems that can lead to dementia than people with other blood types. What may be responsible: factor VII, a protein that helps blood to clot. High levels of factor VII are related to a higher risk of dementia, and people with AB blood have a higher average level of factor VIII than people with other blood types.

RELATED: Major Sign You May Have Dementia, Says Study


It May Put You At Risk of Bleeding Disorders

Middle aged woman suffering from abdominal pain while sitting on bed at home

Analyzing health data from more than 5 million people in Sweden, researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm found that people with type A blood are more likely to have blood clots, while those with type O blood are more likely to have a bleeding disorder, particularly gastric ulcers and duodenal ulcers. Women with type O blood are more likely to develop pregnancy-induced high hypertension (high blood pressure), the scientists found. And to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor. Read more about Michael