This topic will be a 4-part blog series that I will be writing this week; I will be focusing on what pH means and why it is so important, how it affects your weight, puts you at risk for disease and what you can do to begin redirecting your lifestyle in the right, less acidic and inflammed direction.
When it comes to your health, you are most likely trying to do a lot of things right – watching what you eat, exercising, and trying to reduce stress. However there is often one major thing that we completely overlook. According to the latest research from both Western and alternative medicine, ultimate health can only be achieved with a balanced pH.
pH (potential hydrogen) represents the balance of positively charged (acid-forming) ions to negatively charged (alkaline-forming) ions in your body. The lower pH of your blood, the more acidic; the higher the pH, the more alkaline.
The level of acidity in your body directly affects and impacts your overall health , including energy, digestion, weight and skin – as well as your risk for serious diseases such as cancer, osteoporosis, heart and stroke disease and obesity.
For optimum health your pH should be slightly alkaline; however the majority of people are overly acidic due to their unbalanced diets. The good news is that you can become more alkaline and it’s not rocket science to make it happen – it’s called living better through a more nourishing ‘real-food’ diet and improving upon your lifestyle habits.
This is something I learned about long ago, but until lately hadn’t put a lot of everyday thought into it. I know for myself and my family that we eat well and are pretty balanced so I have had no red flags to dive deeper into the whole acid/alkaline issue.
However, recently my Dad has had 2 surgeries and is on the mend working hard at increasing his quality of living and doing a wonderful job. These experiences with him have brought some of these known tools of mine to the surface for me. As we all know the more acidic your body is, the more inflammation you will have and suffer from. The key to reducing inflammation is reducing the foods you consume that produce an inflammatory response in your body.
Everyday we receive energy and a steady flow of oxygen from the foods that we eat. After food is eaten it is broken down, digested and absorbed. What’s left behind is an ash residue that’s either acidic – requiring your body to eliminate it through the intestines, kidneys, sin or lungs – or alkaline. Before your body can excrete or eliminate the waste, it must neutralize them using a steady source of oxygen and organic minerals found in foods such as vegetables, sea vegetables, herbs and green food supplement. When there is enough oxygen and alkaline minerals available for neutralization, the body’s pH remains balanced and its organs function correctly.
Acidosis – the term used in an overly acidic body, happens when we consume too many acid-forming foods like: peanut butter, sulfured dried fruits, MSG, soya sauce, white vinegar, ketchup and pickles, alcohol, soft drinks coffee, cookies, sweets and artificial sweeteners, white bread, flour, rice and pasta, red meat, pork and shellfish etc…And when these types of foods outweigh the more alkalizing foods like: fresh vegetables, fruit, celtic sea salt, black olives, miso, bee pollen, raw seeds and nuts, sprouts, probiotics etc…And now the body has to use its own ‘buffers’ (stored alkalizing minerals) to neutralize the acidic load. Emotional and physical stress also increase the acidity due to their uric-acid by- product.
What happens when your body is too acidic?
In addition to the most common signs such as low energy and poor digestion, studies show a direct link between acidic pH and a variety of health issues , including:
- premature aging
- inadequate absorption of vitamins and minerals
- low bone density/osteoporosis
- poor skin, hair and nail health
- weight gain
- toxins build up
- frequent cold, flu and headache
Stay tuned for Part #2 on this tomorrow when I discuss why there is such a link between weight gain and acidity and what you can start doing to correct this.