BalanceBlog

Acid vs. Alkaline

It’s Time To Alkalize.

Our Standard American Diet (SAD) is highly acidic. Foods such as milk, cheese, red and white meats, eggs, sodas, coffee, alcohol, pasta and flour-based breads, chocolate, fast foods, refined foods, processed and packaged foods, as well as a stressful lifestyle and a toxic environment all contribute to acidosis, a heightened amount of acidity in the body.  Yikes.

We all have a delicate pH and our bodies prefer a slightly alkaline environment. When the foods we consume push our pH toward acidity our bodies find alkaline minerals stored internally to cure the imbalance. While our bodies are amazing machines and have the ability to do this and keep us in healthy pH range, the process of repairing this imbalance requires a severe loss of the very minerals you work hard to supplement daily. Even more scary, acidity is a silent killer, causing inflammation in the body which is the root of all disease. 

OK, so now do we have your attention?

A little review in pH (potential of hydrogen):

pH is a scale ranging from 0-14. 0 being highly acidic, 7 being neutral, and 14 being highly alkaline. Our bodies prefer a slightly alkaline environment with a blood pH of 7.365. If your blood pH moves up or down one tenth of a unit it creates an extreme emergency. If blood pH were to move two tenths either way, it’s lethal. Thank goodness our bodies create homeostasis to help regulate our pH levels!  How do you know your PH level? You can pick up PH strips at Jimbos or a naturopath and wow, is it ever enlightening!
Now Here’s The Juicy Kicker:

A pH imbalance over time will lower your body’s ability to absorb minerals, proteins, and other nutrients, as well as decrease your body’s ability to repair damaged cells and detoxify heavy metals. What’s even more show stopping is that acidity breeds fatigue, illness, disease, cancer, and aging, while alkalinity promotes health, vibrancy, and well-being. Amazingly, Studies show that a pH slightly above 7.4 (alkaline) causes cancer cells to become dormant and a pH of 8.5 (even more alkaline) causes cancer cells to die while healthy cells still thrive. Alkaline foods (plant based foods) help keep your body healthy and help prevent illness.

In addition to incorporating a diet of alkaline foods (and water) into your diet, managing stress is key to maintaing balance. One of the greatest causes of acidity in the body is STRESS!
Mineral Deficiencies:

When your body is highly acidic your body will leach alkaline minerals to balance your pH. This means it draws calcium from your teeth and bones, potassium from your muscles and nerves, magnesium from your arteries, and sodium from your joints. Unfortunately it’s not looking to release any of the acid toxins that your body is storing in it’s fat cells. So in the end, our bodies hold onto the acidic toxins and we loose valuable bone supportive minerals.

Finding Balance: Everything you eat does not need to be or should be alkaline forming. There are many healthy foods like grass fed meats and eggs, even some plant foods like antioxidant rich blueberries and oats, that have an acidic nature. These foods can most certainly be part of a healthy diet as long as it’s balanced out with alkaline foods and supplements as well. Rather than seeking a dogmatic approach to health, simply seek balance to find your best well-being. Here are our tips to alkalize and encourage a healthy pH balance:

  • Begin your day with warm water & lemon (yes, although lemons are acidic, they actually alkalize in your body) instead of coffee…or if you must, have it with your coffee.  Again, balance.
  • Drink at least one green juice / day.  The greener the better and using less fruit is ideal.  We use no more than 1/4-1/3 apple in any of our green juices with apple.
  • Add more chlorophyll to your life: enjoy freshly pressed green juices, make green smoothies (just toss a handful of spinach or other greens into your typical fruit smoothie), and use greens powders such as Orac Energy or, Vitamineral Green. Chlorophyll is highly alkaline. Green foods are chlorophyll rich.  Our new Beaming protein blend will have all of these supergreens in them making it really easy to add them to your diet (more to come on that this month!)
  • Supplement spirulina, e3live, and other sea algaes. You can take these in capsules as a supplement or boost your smoothies with them.  (Our new website launching at the end of this month will have all of these products easily available for you to purchase).
  • Eat your veggies!  Incorporating a green smoothie, salads, steamed veggies and as much vegetables in your diet will help maintain your PH balance and reduce inflammation.   We recommend at least 70% of your diet is veggies.  Balance the other with lean proteins or grains.  Fill your plant ¾ with plant based foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes/beans, and grains.  Think of your plate as being 70-80% greens.
  • Embrace ‘Meatless & Dairyless Mondays’ and make one day a week a vegetarian day – your body will LOVE you for this (especially after the weekend!).  Our “Monday Reset” cleanse is perfect for this!
  • Swap dairy milk out for home made almond milk, hemp milk or even sesame milk which is also rich in calcium.  Pick up a bottle of our delicious, freshly prepared sprouted almond milk at the bBar.
  • Get familiar with this chart below of acid and alkaline forming foods.
  • Always think BALANCE. If you eat something you know is acidic, make sure to balance it out with something alkaline also.
  • Stress causes acidity in the body and is the major cause of most disease.  Managing this is key to your overall health – meditation, yoga, breathing, taking care of yourself and keeping perspective will all help manage stress as will acupuncture, herbs, massage and other techniques that will help in times of greater need.  Yes your diet is important but equally so is managing your lifestyle & stress levels.

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