An Acidic Diet Leads to Inflammation, Osteoporosis and Cancer, Do These 3 Things to Alkalize
The pH scale measures how acidic or alkaline a substance is and ranges from 0 to 14. Seven is neutral. Below 7 becomes increasingly acidic, above 7 increasingly alkaline.
The “acidity” of your body refers to the amount of acid in your body fluids, while the “alkalinity” of your body refers to the ability of those body fluids to neutralize the acid.
As with most health-related barometers, balance is everything. Proper pH varies throughout your body for many reasons. For example, your bowels, skin and vagina should be slightly acidic–this helps keep unfriendly bacteria away. Saliva is more alkaline. While your urine is normally more acidic, especially in the morning. In addition, your body regularly deals with naturally occurring acids that are the by-products of respiration, metabolism, cellular breakdown, and exercise. So clearly the goal is not to think of acid as “bad” and alkaline “good”. Again, it’s a delicate balance.
The Relationship Between pH & Your Health
When there’s even the slightest chance that you could become overly acidic (due to food and lifestyle choices, environment, chemicals etc.) your remarkable body will mine alkaline minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium from your bones, teeth, and organs to neutralize the acids. It’s sorta like having a supply of inner Tums. This is fine every now and then. But pillaging your reserves over the long term can lead to osteoporosis and other health challenges:
1. Excess Weight
2. Weak Bones
3. Dental Problems
5. Skin Problems
6. Mucus Buildup
7. Muscle Pain
Tilting the pH scale in the alkaline direction is easy with a diet filled with mineral-rich plant foods. By eating a more alkaline diet (leafy greens, wheatgrass, veggies, sprouts, avocados, green juices and smoothies) as opposed to an acidic diet (high in animal products, processed carbs, refined sugar, energy drinks, etc), we flood our bodies with chlorophyll, vitamins, minerals, and oxygen. Healthy food creates healthy cells. Conversely, junk goes in and junk comes out.
Testing Your pH
If you are curious, you can test your urine at home with litmus paper strips (available online for about $10). Keep in mind that the pH of urine always varies, depending on what you eat and when, and that you should test your 2nd urine of the day for the best snapshot of what’s going on inside.
The pH levels of your body fluids should fall in the following ranges to be considered healthy:
- Blood pH: 7.35-7.45
- Urine pH: 4.6-8.0
- Saliva pH: 7.0-7.5
1. Start your day with a tall glass of lemon water and stay hydrated.
While lemons are acidic in their natural form, lemon water is alkaline-forming in the body. Drench your cells in alkalinity each morning with two cups of lukewarm, filtered water with ¼ fresh-squeezed lemon. Yes, there are fancy (and expensive) water ionizers out there, but you can also alkalize your water by simply adding lemon. This citrus-powered daily habit helps to cleanse your digestive system, ignite your metabolism, and neutralizes excess acids. Staying hydrated is key for cleansing your system, boosting your energy, helping your immune system work at its best, and avoiding the accumulation of acid waste.
2. Eat more raw foods and drink green juices and smoothies.
Organic green juice, green juice, green juice and green smoothies! And mentioned above, leafy greens, wheatgrass, veggies, sprouts, certain fruits, nuts and seeds, certain grains and seaweeds flood our bodies with vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll, phytonutrients, and oxygen. They can help alkalize our body. Unhealthy cells (like cancer cells) or viruses, bacteria and other nasty microorganisms hate oxygen. They prefer an acidic diet high in animal products, processed and refined foods, and synthetic chemicals. If you wanna get more into raw foods, green juices and smoothies We recommend the Goddess of the row food Kristina Carrillo-Bucaram.
3. Exercise, manage stress, sleep better, and avoid nasty chemicals and cigs.
It’s not just diet that affects your pH. Lack of exercise and an overage of anger, drugs, cigs, and stress can create inflammation and acidity in the body. Stress isn’t a laughing matter or a badge of courage. The work-hard, play-hard, deal-with-it-later approach is a big pH no-no. Emotional stress releases acid-forming hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline that flood your system and muck up your soil. Whether it’s through more yoga, cat naps, meditation, breathing exercises, strolls in the woods, or stress management counseling, reducing the negativity in your day-to-day is a powerful way to improve your cellular health.
Alkaline vs. Acidic Foods
How do we know if a food is alkaline or acidic, and by how much? The most common method is to incinerate a sample of the food and analyze the mineral content of the ash. Not something you can do with a chemistry set from Toys “R” Us. At any rate, if the ash is high in alkaline minerals, the food will probably have an alkalizing effect. That’s the theory, anyway. Because lab results and experts often disagree, the many books and Web sites that give alkaline and acidic food charts also disagree. Usually the disagreement is minor. In some cases, though, it’s much bigger.
Whether a food is mildly alkalizing or mildly acidifying doesn’t really matter very much. There are definitely shades of gray. What’s far more important is to understand what’s highly acidic and thus also inflammatory in order to make better choices.