There are so many suggested diets these days that any prospective weight-loser can get confused. Basing diets on pH levels of foods, a person can either consider alkaline-based and acid-based diets. Alkaline-based foods mostly refer to fruits and vegetables, including nuts, seeds, and spices. Acid-based include mostly high-protein foods such as meat, eggs, fish and most legumes. Sugars, coffee, alcohol, and most grains are also acid forming.
Can a person survive or specifically survive healthily by just depending on either diet? An alkaline lifestyle where dependence is just on vegetables and fruits may work based on experimentation. But is it enough to satisfy the body’s physiology? Will body functions run normally without acid-based foods? The same question can ask for alkaline-based diets. To answer these questions, one should have a basic understanding of the chemistry and physiology of acid-base balance.
There is a third option, and that involves an acid-alkaline based diet. In such a diet, elements of both are combined to supplement and complement each other. This involves choosing the best and healthiest foods from both worlds.
Let us consider how to maintain and improve bone health. An alkaline-acid balance is needed to make this succeed. Exercise may be a factor in strengthening bones. But if the acid-alkaline balance in the body is off, a person will still experience avoidable bone loss in the long run. To counter this, an alkaline diet should be considered.
When one goes “alkaline,” this means that he will be maintaining the body’s acid-base between 6.5, which is slightly acidic and 7.5, which is slightly alkaline. Maintaining such pH level will depend on the foods a person consumes. When foods are digested, some will result in acidic by-products accumulating in the body. These are the foods which are acid-forming. While others will result in alkaline by-products, the alkaline-forming foods.
Combining a diet of acid-alkaline based foods can be traced back to the Stone Age ancestors. They used to consume as part of their daily intakes, natural foods like nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables and root crops. These were enhanced with hunted animal meats, fish, and eggs. Surprisingly, without being aware, our ancestors were already on an average pH-balanced diet. Through generations, the body physiology has evolved into adapting this diet. People usually consume acid-forming foods like meat, eggs, beans, fish and other protein-rich foods. But this must be balanced with plenty of alkaline-forming foods like fruits and vegetables, seeds, nuts, and spices. It is an amusing thought that if a person wants to get healthy, he must eat like Stone Age people.
Remember the adage: an apple a day keeps the doctor away. This fruit has always been a symbol of health and rightly so because apples contain tons of health benefits.
It is an alkaline-based fruit which has plenty of antioxidants and anti-bacterial compounds. These will provide the body better health and lots of energy. Recent studies have even shown that apples can wake you up better than caffeine, so it is time to switch your acidic-coffee to alkaline-apple.
This is one of the more delicious and versatile alkaline-based food. It’s easy to have it in guacamole, in salads, in sandwiches or even taken as it is. It is packed with oils that are good for the body. No wonder it is always included in every nutritionist best food list.
Also known as “potassium sticks,” this highly-alkaline fruit is an excellent source of, well, potassium. People can have this as a dessert or a snack and do so often. Aside from potassium, it is also rich in fiber. This is a compound that helps enhance digestive regularity, sweeping out unwanted toxins right out of the digestive tract.
True, the banana has some sugar content, which is why some dieters avoid the fruit. But compared with a granola bar or some processed fruits which are packed with sugars and acidic ingredients, the banana is better anytime.
One can even have his banana, fancy style. Make some “nice cream.” Simply freeze some bananas, blend them later into a creamy consistency. And to make it more fancy, enhance it with some alkaline ingredients like berries and fresh mint.
With a high-alkaline ph of 8.0, carrots are eaten to neutralize acidic foods that are combined with it. Carrots have always been linked to improving eyesight, and this is true because of its high vitamin A content.
Just a cup of this veggie will provide 300% of the daily requirement intake of beta-carotene. This is an antioxidant form of vitamin A. Aside from promoting good eyesight; it can also provide protection from cancer and promote brighter and younger skin.
This alkaline-rich vegetable offers benefits against high estrogen levels. The vegetable contains the nutrient known as Indole-3-Carbinol. This aids in hormone re-balancing when the estrogen levels in the body are too high.
Unknowingly, we do encounter this hormone daily when we consume estrogenic foods, chemicals found in the environment and pharmaceutical drugs. A high estrogen level is not good as it may lead to bloating in the digestive system, weight gain, as well as infertility and reproductive cancers.
Rejuvenating clinics usually apply cucumber slices or mashed cucumbers on the eyes, face, and skin. This is done to boost the vitality of every living cell in the body. And this has been proven to be effective. It does rejuvenate the skin making a person feel younger and fresher for longer. Cucumbers are also rich in vitamin C, fiber and plenty of essential minerals.
This dark green leafy veggie has been revered for the health benefits it offers, like preventing cancer and heart disease. It is one of the highest-alkaline green. Being versatile, it has been used as a new and great addition to soups, salads, and stir-fry recipes. It’s even used in smoothies for a much-required alkaline boost.
Because of the kale’s packed-nutrients, it has been labeled as the “new beef.” It is a great source of plant iron, calcium, and vitamin K, which is said to help protect the body against many types of cancer.
Another high-alkaline fruit with a pH level of 8.5 that will be a great addition to one’s alkaline-lifestyle. With such a high pH, it will keep a person hydrated as well as energizing the entire body. The fruit also is rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins.
Compared to oranges, the kiwi contains nearly five times the amount of vitamin C in oranges. It is also a great source of fiber, which improves digestion, and potassium for muscular functions.
Surprisingly, lemons which are supposed to be extremely acidic, are one of the most alkalizing food sources in the world. This is because of how they affect the body after digestion. They significantly affect the body’s pH levels, transitioning it to alkalinity almost immediately. This makes it a superb addition to salads, meals, and beverages.
With its high-alkaline pH level of 8.5, the papaya is great for treating stomach problems, bloating and diarrhea. It’s delicious orange flesh is easily digested. It is rich in fiber and natural sugars, as well as vitamins and minerals that help in neutralizing acidity in the body.
This herb has been underestimated as it has been used mainly as a garnish. But it is a high-alkaline food with multiple health benefits. It is a breath freshener; it can eliminate bacteria, it stimulates detoxification, can boost immunity and will make you feel energized.
The high calcium content of this high-alkaline vegetable makes it ideal for bone health. Its high-alkalinity qualifies it in anti-cancer and cleansing juicing procedures. It is also a versatile green that can be used in salads, stir-fry recipes, health drinks and soups.
These tubers are high in starch but can still be considered as an alkalizing food. The high fiber content of sweet potatoes helps slow down the release of sugars into the bloodstream. In short, because of their fiber content, sweet potatoes have less of a negative impact on blood sugar levels. Ergo, this tuber is an excellent source of energy and provides the body with a boost of alkaline nutrients.
This green veggie, although small, packs a lot of nutrients, especially iron and calcium. Its versatility has found them in salads, stir-fry dishes, and soups. It is an exceptionally alkalizing vegetable. It has shown to prevent digestive disorders, arthritis, and even cancer.
Watermelon is the second most alkalizing food on the planet. This fruit is bursting with water, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Everybody loves watermelons because they are delicious and refreshing. A slice of it can provide one a fresh dose of disease-preventing alkalinity.
This highly-alkalized fruit can also provide the body with the essential electrolytes for healthy heart functions. And because of its composition, mainly water, it can keep the body hydrated more than any other fruit or vegetable. On its own, the fruit is fun and refreshing. But be creative by adding them to salads, in smoothies, popsicles and more.
Benefits of Consuming Alkaline-rich Foods
It will give the skin a healthy glow. The biggest organ of the body is the skin. It also functions as a third kidney because it helps the body detoxify itself. People are having skin problems like acne, eczema, psoriasis, blame them all on acidity. Seeing these problems on one’s skin means that the body is acidic, and it fights back the best it can to expel the acids out. And one can help by alkalizing.
All these problems (and cures) start with what a person eats. Sugars and grains are the main culprits to such conditions because these are acidic foods. It is recommended that a person either cuts back or eliminates them from the diet.
It will provide energy for the whole day. Always be sure the body is hydrated always. A drop in the hydration levels can lower a person’s energy level. Energy is a marker on how healthy a person is. A mere 5% reduction in the levels of hydration can decrease energy levels up to 30%.
On the average, the body loses about 2.5 liters daily. It’s then recommended that a person has a water intake of about 3-4 liters, preferably with a pH of 8-9.5. The alkalinity can be increased by adding some organic lime or lemon slices and a dash of sea salt.
It helps get rid of acid reflux. It is a misconception that acid-reflux is caused by excessive amounts of acid in the stomach. That creeping feeling in the esophagus gives the assumption that it is stomach acid rising.
The truth is, acid reflux is caused by not enough acid in the stomach. People eat foods that could decrease the acids in their bodies, but they want to augment acid production in their stomach. There are two types of acids involved here: the body acid, which is the bad kind and the stomach acid, which is the good kind. Body acids which are bad can be eliminated by avoiding processed foods, caffeine, sugars and grains. Stomach acids which are good. These can be increased by taking one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar each day and drinking alkaline water. This kind of water usually contains a lot of mineral salts.
Promotes better and more refreshing sleep. Consistently waking up between 1:00 – 3:00 in the morning is a warning sign that the body is acidic and that the kidneys and liver might already be asking for some assistance.
The body becomes more acidic at these times, and if it’s not alkalized, the acid will prevent one from getting a much needed deep, REM sleep. During the day, a person needs to consume green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, Swiss chard watercress and even wheatgrass. This will help detoxify the liver. Stay away from acidic foods that are high in carbohydrates and sugars. Have supper three hours before going to bed. Finally, minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sodium bicarbonate very calming effects on the nerve system. They are also powerful neutralizers of acids. Take this half an hour before sleeping, and it will change one’s life!
Prevent osteoporosis from developing. The human body is a wonder. When finding itself deficient in something, it will find a way to remedy the situation temporarily. That is until the person addresses the deficiency. It will not even have to notify one about such action.
Take the case of osteoporosis. This is a medical condition in which the bones become brittle and fragile from loss of tissue. Typically, because of hormonal changes or deficiency of vitamin D or calcium. When this condition occurs, the body will find a way to get the deficient calcium to maintain its pH of 7.4. And the only available “calcium-rich bank” is the human bones. Withdrawing calcium from bones will make them brittle and fragile, and this will lead to osteoporosis.
To avoid this from happening, one needs to ante up on his consumption of alkaline foods. These are rich in vitamins and minerals, most of which are found in green leafy vegetables and fruits. When there are ample amounts of vitamins, calcium and other minerals in the blood, the body will not have to withdraw such from the bones and thus to avoid osteoporosis.
What do you think?