A Natural Approach To Health
Eating For Acid-Alkali Imbalance
We had a question the other day about acid-alkali imbalance.
Acidity and alkalinity are measured according to pH.
Water has a pH of 7.0 and is considered neutral – neither acid nor alkaline.
Anything with a pH below 7.0 is acidic, while anything with a pH above 7.0 is alkaline.
The ideal pH range for the human body is between 7.35 and 7.45 (the human body is naturally mildly alkaline).
So, values below pH 7.35 are considered on the acidic side and values above pH 7.45 on the alkaline side.
Acid and Alkaline Self-Test
Do this test to determine if your body fluids are too acidic or too alkaline.
Buy litmus paper, which is available at most drugstores, and apply saliva and/or urine to it.
The paper will change color to show whether you’re overly acidic or alkaline.
Always do the test before eating or at least 1 hour after eating.
If you’re too acidic, see the recommendations under Acidosis.
If you’re too alkaline, see the recommendations under Alkalosis.
Acidosis is where body chemistry becomes imbalanced and too acidic.
Symptoms for acidosis include frequent sighing, insomnia, water retention, recessed eyes, arthritis, migraine headaches, abnormally low blood pressure, acidic or strong perspiration, dry hard stools, foul-smelling stools accompanied by a burning sensation in your anus, alternating constipation and diarrhea, difficulty swallowing, halitosis, a burning sensation in your mouth and/or under your tongue, sensitivity of your teeth to vinegar and acidic fruits, and bumps on the tongue or roof of your mouth.
There are 2 classifications of acidosis: respiratory and metabolic.
Respiratory acidosis occurs if your lungs aren’t able to remove carbon dioxide.
Metabolic acidosis occurs if your body creates an excessive amount of acid in your body fluids.
Alkalosis is the opposite of acidosis – it’s a condition where your body is too alkaline.
Alkalosis is less common than acidosis and causes over-excitation of your nervous system.
Symptoms may show up as a highly nervous condition, including hyperventilation and even seizures.
Other symptoms can include sore muscles, creaking joints, bursitis, drowsiness, protruding eyes, hypertension, hypothermia, seizures, edema, allergies, night cramps, asthma, chronic indigestion, night coughs, vomiting, too-rapid blood clotting and thick blood, menstrual problems, dry hard stools, prostatitis, and thickening of your skin, with burning, itching sensations.
Alkalosis may cause calcium to build up in your body, as in bone or heel spurs.
Alkalosis is often the result of taking too many drugs for treating gastritis or peptic ulcers.
To deal with acid-alkali imbalance, it’s beneficial to:
*Drink 6-8 cups of purified water daily.
*Use elder bark, hops, and willow.
*Externally, apply ginger compresses to the kidney area.
*Eat a diet of 50% raw foods. Raw foods not only keep the correct acid/alkaline balance in your body, but they’re also richer in nutrients easily assimilated into your body. Recommended foods include apples, avocados, bananas, bilberries, blackberries, grapefruit, grapes, lemons, pears, pineapples, strawberries, and all vegetables. Fresh fruits (especially citrus fruits) and vegetables reduce acidosis. Start with small amounts of citrus fruits and gradually add larger amounts. If you don’t want to adopt a strict raw diet, eating lots of fruits and vegetables of any kind prepared in any way will help your pH to become more alkaline. In addition, limiting protein intake to no more than 80 grams a day and grains to 8 servings also will help reduce blood acidity.
*Avoid the following foods while acidic: alcohol, beans, buckwheat, catsup, chickpeas, cocoa, coffee, cornstarch, cranberries, eggs, fish, flour and flour-based products, legumes, lentils, meat, milk, mustard, noodles, oatmeal, olives, organ meats, pasta, pepper, poultry, prunes, sauerkraut, shellfish, soft drinks, sugar and anything with sugar added, tea, vinegar; aspirin, tobacco, and most drugs are also acid-forming.
*Use the following foods in moderation while acidic: butter, canned or glazed fruit, cheeses, dried coconut, dried fruit, grains, ice cream, ice milk, lamb’s quarters, nuts and seeds, and soy products.
*Chew your food slowly, and don’t overindulge. Make sure food is mixed well with saliva to form a liquid consistency before swallowing. Don’t drink fluids during meals.
*Prepare cooked foods with care. Keep clean working surfaces and wash vegetables and fruit. Keep meat and vegetables separate – you can contaminate vegetables with bacteria from raw meat. Don’t overcook vegetables, as this makes them lose not only their flavor, but also their nutritional value. Avoid processed foods. They’re low in nutrients and overexert your digestive system. Both cooked and processed foods tend to make your body more acid. Also avoid eating late at night, as this makes your body work more on digestion and less on restoration.
*Drink potato broth every day.
*Avoid animal protein (especially beef and pork), as it leads to acidity.
*Since excess vitamin C may lead to acidosis, reduce your intake of vitamin C for a few weeks. When taking vitamin C, use a buffered variety.
*Heartburn and indigestion can be the result of food digesting poorly. If you suffer from heartburn, taking small swallows of a teaspoon or two or natural cider vinegar in a glass of water may be helpful. It may cause a burning sensation when you swallow it, but in approximately 20 minutes, you should feel relief. If the cider vinegar works, this may mean you don’t have enough acid in your stomach. In this case, consider taking digestive enzyme supplements containing hydrochloric acid (HCl). Stomach acid is important for breaking down food, and also prevents germs from irritating your intestines.
*Practice deep breathing.
*Check your urine pH daily using pH paper.
*Alfalfa is beneficial for your digestive tract. It’s a good source of vitamin K, and other nutrients. Use supplements plus natural sources, like alfalfa sprouts.
*Adopt a diet of 80% whole grains including beans, breads, brown rice, crackers, lentils, macaroni, nuts, soy sauce, and whole-grain cereals. The other 20% of your diet should include fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, chicken, eggs, and natural cheese.
*Avoid the following foods while alkaloid: avocados, corn, dates, fresh coconut, fresh fruits, fresh vegetables (onions, potatoes, rutabagas), honey, horseradish, maple syrup, molasses, mushrooms, onions, raisins, sprouts, umeboshi plums, watercress. Note: All vegetables, especially raw vegetables, balance the pH levels in your blood. Although it might seem like citrus fruits would have an acidifying effect on your body, the citric acid they contain actually has an alkalinizing effect.
*Use the following foods in moderation while alkaloid: almonds, blackstrap molasses, Brazil nuts, chestnuts, lima beans, millet, and soured dairy products.
*Don’t use antacids or mineral supplements for 2 weeks.
*Cut back on megadoses of vitamins and minerals for 2 weeks.
*Check your urine pH daily using litmus paper.
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