I was excited to be invited to Oxford College Emory University in February 2016 as a nutritional speaker – talking about acid-alkaline balance, favorable foods, controlling pH levels, educated food choices, eating patterns, practical steps to crowd in favorable foods and many more.
The Western Lifestyle often promotes inflammation – providing a perfect environment for chronic diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Arthritis and many more. A properly designed alkaline nutrition pattern and lifestyle can be part a healthy nutritional approach – support healing and managing inflammation.
The human body is designed to carefully maintain a regulated ph Balance. The pH (or potential for hydrogen) is a scale that measures from 0 – 1425mg how acidic or alkaline a body is.
7 is neutral, everything less than 7 as acidic and everything above 7 is alkaline. A healthy body maintains a slightly alkaline pH, between 7.35 – 7.45 and excretes or eliminates acids on a daily basis. Short term imbalances are tolerated, but when our bodies are in an acidic state for prolonged times, experts believe this can lead to illness and chronic disease.
The primary organs for maintaining ph balance are 1) kidneys (urine) 2) lungs (breathing) and 3) skin (sweating).
What influences pH Balance?
The western diet is mainly based on white flours, animal products, sugar and alcohol, all which are highly acidic. Because that, many people today, and escpecially the vast majority sick people, test acidic.
There are two conditions associated with pH imbalance:
1. Acidosis (excess acid in the body)
- Mainly caused by malnutrition – missing minerals and vitamins in the absence alkaline food (groups)
- Researchers have identified a mildly acidic tilt in body chemistry as chronic low-grade metabolic acidosis.
Acidosis can cause,inadequate calcium, magnesium, potassium & other essential minerals and vitamins, causing:
- High Blood pressure
- Inflammation/Chronic Diseases
- Detoxification problems (liver/kidneys)
- Bone & Mood problems
- Micro biome problems
- Yeast Fungi thrive in an acidic environment
- Fatigue and Immune system problems
2. Alkalosis – excessive alkalinity in the body
This is a rather rare condition in western societies and usually not caused by diet. Main causes are:
- Drugs like antacids to treat heartburn contain very strong alkalizing agents, regularly taken produces insufficient amounts hydrochloric acid (HCI), the acid used by the stomach to break down food
- Vomiting (anorexia nervosa, alcoholics, Bulimia)
Alkalosis can lead to cramps, especially in the face fingers and face.
Can be done with test strips, but it is recommended to be done by experts. Tests can be different (urine, saliva etc.) and there are different methods and Hour-to hour-variations that experts usually can interpret . Over the counter tests might produce inaccurate and confusing results.
Benefits an alkaline lifestyle:
- Increased amount fruits/veggies – wide spectrum micronutrientsten absent in the western diet
- Relieves organs the kidneys, lungs and Skin
- Cutting out sugar & alcohol big benefit
Many people stop eating acidic foods, resulting in Protein deficiency and other vitamins, such as from the Vitamin B group. As a general rule, always try to balance your meals rather than cutting out entire food groups.
- As a general rule, never cut out entire food groups without consulting an expert
- As everything with nutrition, one isolated approach is never the answer, it takes an orchastreated effort to live healthy. Eating for pH balance can certainly be an important factor, among many others, meeting an indiviudals unique nutritional needs
- As we remember from school, an acid is neutralized with a base – Balancing is the approach, combine acidic with alkaline foods to balance your meals
- Focus on Vegetables & Fruits (1 cup alkalizing green a day)
- Exercise Moderation
- Avoid alcohol
- Limit white flours and alkalizing grains
- Introduce Miso or any type seaweed to your nutritional pattern
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