Balance is key, but when it comes to your body’s pH levels, its absolutely essential.
It is no hidden secret that certain foods make you feel amazing, while others may lead to fatigue, digestive issues, headaches and other ill health effects. This has a lot to do with its alkaline or acidic effects on the body. But what does it all mean and why is it so important?
PH stands for “potential for hydrogen” and measures the amount of hydrogen ions in a solution. Put simply, pH measures how acidic or alkaline something is. It is important to note that different pH values are essential in different parts of the body. The stomach is loaded with hydrochloric acid, a highly acidic pH of 2.5 necessary to break down foods. However the blood is slightly alkaline, with a pH of 7.36. Our bodies rely on these narrow ranges to function at optimal levels; therefore any alterations to these will result in ill health.
Causes of Acidity
Our bodies go to great lengths to keep within these ranges, however stress, poor diet and lifestyle choices create additional stress on the body to stay within these optimal ranges.
When we are constantly engaging in acidic promoting habits, such as a poor diet, increase coffee/alcohol and a sedentary lifestyle, our bodies become more acidic leading to acidic overload. This can impair the body’s ability to repair and properly detoxify, opening up the chance for disease and illnesses to flourish.
Common signs of Acidic overload
- Aches and Pains
- Weight Gain
- Digestive Issues
- Chronic Infections
- Food Allergies
- Candida Overgrowth
- Brain Fog
To shed some light on the most common misconception, the acidic or alkalizing effect specific food has on your body is not in relation to its pH prior to consumption, but its effects after digestion. Our kidneys have to neutralise the acid that’s produced in the process of digestion; therefore whether a food is alkalising or acidifying is based on the amount of acid waste that is produced when it’s digested.
So how do we Alkalise our bodies and what are the benefits?
It’s through an abundance of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, adequate sleep, minimal stress and plenty of filtered water that we start to take the acidic stress away from our bodies.
Health benefits that may be seen when Alkalinity is supported:
- Reduction in candida overgrowth
- Weight loss
- Increased energy
- Stronger immunity
- Clear mind
- Increased concentration
- Proper digestive function
Alkalizing foods to eat in abundance:
- A wide range and of vegetables
- Fruits such as apples, berries, lemons and limes
- The beloved green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, rocket)
- Pumpkins, sweet potato’s and beetroots
- Nuts and seeds; almonds, chia, coconut and pumpkin seeds (minimizing peanuts)
- Onions, garlic, leeks, ginger
- Filtered water
Acidic foods to eliminate:
- Coffee and alcohol
- Processed milk, butter substitutes, cheese
- High intake of meat, specifically from low quality, grain fed animals
- White pasta and breads
- Fizzy Drinks
- Processed and refined foods
- High sugar and salt
- Artificial sweeteners
- Deep fried foods
- Packaged foods
Although dietary intake is a major effector in creating an alkalized environment, it is also important to make alterations to life style habits as well. Increase your daily exercise, steering away from chemical filled cleaning and beauty products and reducing stress will all play a part in encouraging your body to work at an optimal level of health.