Acidic bodies are unhealthy bodies. When the body is overly acidic, it creates an unwanted environment in which illness, bacteria, and yeast thrive. It also takes minerals from vital organs and bones to neutralize the acid and remove it from the body.
As a result, the body’s mineral reserves of things like calcium, sodium, potassium, and magnesium can run dangerously low, causing damage that can go undetected for years until it reaches unhealthy levels and leads to acidosis.
Many people are already consuming enough acid forming foods, such as dairy, grains, meats, and sugar. Since the body is constantly generating acidic waste products from the metabolism, those waste products need to be neutralized or excreted in some way.
In order to neutralize the constant acid generation, we need to supply the body with more alkaline foods.
Consider the health problems caused by mild acidosis (poor pH balance):
- Inflamed sensitive gums, cavities
- Immune deficiency
- Sciatica, lumbago, stiff neck
- Respiratory problems, shortness of breath, coughing
- Yeast fungal overgrowth
- Low energy and chronic fatigue
- Cardiovascular damage, including the constriction of blood vessels and reduction in oxygen
- Heart problems, arrhythmias, increased heart rate
- Weight gain, obesity, and diabetes
- Bladder and kidney infections
- Accelerated free radical damage
- Premature aging
- Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
- Osteoporosis, weak brittle bones, hip fractures, bone spurs
- Headaches, confusion, sleepiness
- Joint pain, aching muscles, and lactic acid buildup
- Allergies, acne
Start By Knowing Your pH
pH testing is important because it allows an individual to get a numeric representation of the current level of acidification in their body. A healthy average pH reading will range anywhere from 6.75 to 7.25. The optimal pH numeric reading is 7.36. To learn more about pH testing, check references at end of article.
You Can’t Tell if Food Is Acidic or Alkaline by Taste Alone
For example, many people think of lemons as acidic, and while they are classified as an acidic fruit, lemons are actually an alkaline forming food. During the process of digestion the acids are oxidized into carbon dioxide and water and therefore do not create an acid condition in the system.
Calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and sodium are the main alkalizing minerals. Foods that are high in these minerals are considered alkaline forming foods. Most foods have both acid and alkaline minerals in them, so those with greater concentrations of acidic minerals are considered acidic and vice versa.
The Body Has Limits
The body has limits for how much it can compensate for acid imbalance. Therefore, food intake plays a critical role in maintaining the acid-alkaline balance. Many diseases and general malaise are the result of the body’s attempt to rebalance the internal environment.
Generally speaking, if the diet includes too many acid forming foods, such as high amounts of meats, grains, dairy, and sugars, the body becomes more acidic. If you eat too many alkaline producing foods such as greens, fruits, and sea vegetables, the body can become too alkaline. Balance is key.
How to Improve Your Alkalinity
- Check your pH regularly
- Drink plenty of water (alkaline water when possible)
- Remove acidic foods
- Replace a traditional lunch with a large green salad
- Use lettuce leaves and collard greens as wraps
- Try not to consume processed foods
- Eliminate soda, sugars, and coffee, and replace them with herbal tea, herbal coffee, and green drinks
- Replace dairy milks with coconut or almond milk
- Add green juices or smoothies to your diet
What You Eat Matters
Improving pH levels may require a little more thought, but you’ll appreciate the rewards of your efforts as you begin to feel more energetic and vibrant and your overall health improves.
There is no question about it: What you eat has a direct impact on your overall health. It was Ann Wigmore, founder of the renowned Hippocrates Health Institute, who said, “The food you eat can be either be the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.”
http://www.myhealthmaven.com/ (Understanding pH)
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/ (“The Alkaline Diet: Is There Evidence That an Alkaline pH Diet Benefits Health?”)
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/(“Diet, evolution and aging–the pathophysiologic effects of the post-agricultural inversion of the potassium-to-sodium and base-to-chloride ratios in the human diet”)
http://orthomolecular.org/library/ (Minerals and Disease; Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine Vol. 10, No. 3 & 4, 1995; Joseph D. Campbell)