Alkaline Food Keeps Your Body's pH Balance Healthy - Find Out Why. Our Acid and Alkaline Foods List Shows You Foods That Can Restore Your Health
Alkaline Food - Why Is Your Body's pH Balance Important For Your Health?
The "potential of Hydrogen" or pH balance of our body's fluids and tissues is a measuring unit of acidity and alkalinity. Our body continuously tries to balance its pH with alkaline food, which means it will use minerals and other nutrients from our organs to balance the negative charged ions (alkaline) and the positive charged ions (acid) in our body.
Our body's health depends on the state of its pH balance and on the fact that all pH-dependent biochemical reactions take place normally. If our body becomes too acidic, our cellular metabolism is impacted and will eventually shut down from being poisoned by toxic waste. The more acidic foods we eat, the harder it gets for our body to eliminate the harmful acids.
A pH value of 7 indicates a neutral solution; increasing numbers 7-14 signal an alkaline environment; and decreasing numbers 7-0 signal an acidic solution. All of our bodily fluids have an optimum pH level of 7.3 - 7.4, which is slightly alkaline.
Acidity in the body is mostly created by the foods we eat, but other lifestyle factors like stress, smoking, and alcohol consumption have an impact too.
One of the first symptoms you may notice for pH imbalance and acidity is increased fatigue and lack of energy. You may also notice weight problems or weight gain, joint and muscle aches, bladder and kidney problems, weaker bones, hormone problems, digestion slow-down, and decreased immunity against viruses and diseases.
An acidic body is an ideal playground for the growth of bacteria, yeast, fungi, mold, and viruses. Alkaline diet foods can prevent that.
An acidic pH balance will decrease our body's ability to absorb minerals and nutrients, and to repair damaged cells and detoxify heavy metals.
When we are acidic, the final buffer system for clean-up kicks in, and that’s in the bones. Our bones will start to dissolve into phosphate and calcium to retain the excess acids, which can then lead to bone loss and osteoporosis (1). The kidneys have a harder job too, as the calcium flood from the bones can lead to kidney stones (1).
The next danger is that our body moves into acidosis, which means there is so much excess acidity in the blood that it can lead to weight gain, immune disorders, kidney stones, kidney failure, certain cancers, high blood pressure, diabetes, gall stones, and osteoporosis (1, 2).
Mild acidosis can also lead to chronic fatigue, premature aging, and cardiovascular damage.
You can test the pH balance of your body easily yourself: simple pH tests are available in drugstores and can be used in the morning on a sober stomach, or at least 3 hours after the last meal. Your saliva pH should be between 6.4 and 6.8 and your urine can vary more, between 6.0 and 7.0. This is the optimum pH balance. Anything below this indicates acidity in your body.
At A Glance
What are the health benefits of alkaline foods?
- Alkaline food keeps your body's pH balance in a healthy acid alkaline balance, which is important to prevent the growth of bacteria and malicious cells. Your combined bodily fluids should be in the healthy pH level range of 7.3 - 7.4.
- You can prevent and cure bacterial or other infections and immune diseases. An alkaline body balance also assists in preventing cancer and diabetes.
- If your body is in a healthy pH balance you will feel increased vitality, more energy, and better sleep.
- Alkaline food helps you to slow down your aging process, as your cells' lifespan is longer.
What are the health risks of acidity in your body?
- If your body is too acidic it will impact your cellular metabolism, which can shut down from processing too much toxic waste.
- An acidic body is the ideal playground for bacteria, infections, immune diseases, and cancer growth.
- Increased fatigue, joint and muscle pain, lack of energy, kidney problems, hormone issues, weaker bones, and weight gain can all result from an acid alkaline imbalance in your body.
- Your body can no longer repair damaged cells or detoxify heavy metals if you are acidic.
- In case of extreme acidity, your body can move into acidosis, which can lead to immune disorders, kidney stones, kidney failure, certain cancers, high blood pressure, gall stones, diabetes, osteoporosis, premature aging, and heart disease.
What Alkaline Food Should You Eat For A Healthy pH Balance?
All animal foods including meat, fish, dairy, and eggs are forming acids in our body. Acidity is also caused by processed foods that contain white flour or refined sugar, and by alcohol and caffeine-containing beverages. Artificial sweeteners and medical drugs further contribute to an acidic pH level in the body.
On the other hand, most plant foods including fruits, vegetables, and legumes are alkaline foods, and these are the foods you want to focus on.
While recommendations vary slightly, it is safe to say that at least 60 - 70% of your daily diet should consist of alkaline food to retain your good health. However, if you are trying to heal an existing condition or disease naturally with your diet, your alkaline food intake should be upped to 80-100% for the duration of your healing.
There are also specific alkaline diets that focus on high alkaline foods and supplements to help you maintain a healthy weight and pH balance. Fact is however, that you don't need a specific alkaline diet plan - just factor more alkali-forming foods into your daily diet and supplement with natural enzymes and minerals to give your body an extra alkaline boost. Your body can then regenerate its healthy balance from the inside out.
Alkaline Foods List
You will find that the natural pH of a food does not indicate whether it will form acids or alkalis in the body.
The lemon is a good example: while acidic in its natural state, the lemon forms alkalis once absorbed by your body's bloodstream and organs. After digestion, alkaline ashes are created from the minerals and nutrients of that food. This makes the lemon an alkaline food.
Meat is exactly the opposite: it usually tests alkaline in its natural state, but after digestion, meat is leaving a very acidic residue in the human body.
The same is true for eggs and dairy products - they are all acidic foods.
In general we can say that the list of alkaline forming foods include most fruits, vegetables, spices, herbs, a few seeds and nuts, sugar-free juices, green and herbal teas.
In general these foods are acid forming: meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products, grains, legumes, most nuts, sweets and sweeteners, seasonings, alcohol, soft drinks, coffee and black tea
|Type of Food||Alkaline Food
H = high M = medium L = low
H = high M = medium L = low
H = lemons, limes, watermelons, cantaloupe melons, honeydew melons, grapefruits, mangos, papayas, kiwis, passion fruits
M = apples, pears, raisins, dates, figs, grapes, blueberries, pears, pineapples, apricots, currants
L = cherries, apples, bananas, peaches, oranges, avocados, gooseberries, guavas, grapefruits, nectarines, persimmons, raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb, nectarines, pomegranates, tangerines
H = cranberries, prunes, blackberries
M = sour cherries
L = plums, processed fruits, juices with sugar, blueberries
H = garlic, parsley, raw spinach, broccoli, hot peppers, vegetable juices, seaweeds, watercress, endives
M = lettuce, beets, beet greens, celery, carrots, sweet potatoes, zucchinis, squash, okra, carob, alfalfa sprouts, arrowroot, sweet pumpkins, cauliflower, chlorella, arugula
L = cabbage, olives, potatoes with skins, corn, mushrooms, tomatoes, bamboo shoots, bell peppers, ginger, daikon, kohlrabi, kale, chards, collard greens, mustard greens, dandelions, parsnip, sapote, turnips, artichokes, eggplants, cucumbers, leeks, onions, pickles, radish, sea salt vegetables, taro, horseradish, wheat grass, edible flowers, spirulina, rutabaga
M = potatoes without skin
L = cooked spinach, asparagus, Brussel's sprouts
|LEGUMES (beans, peas, lentils)||
M = green beansL = green peas, soybeans, tofu, soymilk, miso, tempeh
M = chocolate
L = lentils, kidney beans, string beans, pinto beans, navy beans, lima beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans
|GRAINS and CEREALS||
M = sprouted grains
L = millet, wild rice, quinoa
H = wheat, white flour, semolina, white pasta, pastries, cakes, cookies
M = white rice, basmati rice, buckwheat, rye, oats, refined cereals, wheat germ, popcorn, tapioca, bran, barley
L = brown rice, sprouted wheat, spelt, whole grain pasta
|NUTS and SEEDS||
L = chestnuts, almonds, water chestnuts, coconuts, sesame seeds, sprouted seeds, flax seeds
M = pecans, cashews, peanuts, peanut butter
L = pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, pistachios, walnuts, Brazil nuts
M = olive oil, flax seed oilL = canola oil
L = corn oil, safflower oil, sesame oil, sunflower oil, lard
|MEAT and FISH||NONE||
H = beef, pork, shellfish, lamb, goat
M =poultry, game, rabbit
L = venison, fish
|DAIRY and EGGS||
L = whey, goat milk, goat cheese
H = cow's milk, cheese, ice cream
M = raw cow's milk
L = eggs, butter, yogurt, buttermilk, cottage cheese, sour cream
|SWEETS and SWEETENERS||
H = stevia
M = unprocessed maple syrup, rice syrupL = raw honey, raw sugar
H = all artificial sweeteners incl. Splenda, NutraSweet, Aspartame, Sweet N' Low
M = white and brown sugar, custard, jelly, jams, processed maple syrup
L = molasses, processed honey
|SEASONINGS||M = all spices||
M = refined / iodized salt, vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, mayonnaise
L = mustard
H = herbal teas, lemon water, cucumber water, alkaline water
M = green tea
L = ginger tea
H = beer, liquor, spirits, soft drinks, carbonated drinks
M = wine, coffee, black tea, fruit juices with sugar
(1) The LA Times 'Milk Mustache" article about dangerous diet claims of the dairy industry
(2) Dr John McDougall about alkaline food and the dangers of high protein diets
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