pH - What's Your Number? Part 2 of the Series
What is your #? Acid or Alkaline?
A balanced pH is your key to living a better quality of life!
The World Health Organization reports “Basically, you die earlier and spend more time disabled if you’re in America rather than a member of most other advanced countries”
Many scientists believe that helping your body balance its pH levels is very important to fighting disease.
In last month’s issue I wrote about the importance of having a balanced body pH in order to have longer lasting good health. Life is all about balance. This is especially profound when speaking of body pH levels, which is the human body’s need to stay at a slightly alkaline pH. Levels of pH are measured on a scale from zero to 14, in which zero is very acidic, 7 is neutral, and 14 is very alkaline. Your body is over 70 percent water. For you to be healthy, your water content needs to have a healthy pH balance. Your body’s fluids are maintained at different pH levels to keep you healthy. To sustain these pH levels throughout your body, your cells and organs are constantly filtering what you eat. Everything works together to maintain your delicate pH balance.
So the big question is…How Do I Test My pH?
Since the pH of saliva offers a general window through which you can see the overall pH balance in your body, I am going to recommend you use pH test strips (litmus paper). This is the easiest and quickest way you can test your pH. You can test either in the privacy of your own home or on the run. These test strips are inexpensive and are available at most reputable nutrition companies such as “Chiropractor’s Blend”. This paper can be used to test saliva or urine, and the color of the paper will change to reflect your pH level. You simply compare the color of the paper to the color scale on the side of the package to reveal your pH. You may test your pH everyday!
You salivary pH should stay in a range of 7.0-7.5 for healthy body function. The best time to test your salivary pH is approximately 1 hour before a meal and 2 hours after a meal. If your urinary pH fluctuates between 6.0 to 6.5 in the morning and between 6.5 and 7.0 in the evening, your body is functioning within a healthy range.
When saliva pH falls below 7.0 or urine pH falls below 6.0, your nutrients are not being absorbed, your body becomes toxic and your body’s cells are bathing in acid. Generally going unnoticed for years, this acid waste begins to silently corrode and eat away at your blood vessels, destroying cells and ultimately, entire organ function in your body. Without correcting your body pH, the damage becomes progressively worse, and deadly over time. Fatigue is probably the major symptom or complaint of an overly acidic body.
The normal American diet consists of large amounts of fast food, protein, fat, sugar and carbohydrates. This results in an overly acidic body. Another source of acid is soda. Soda has an acidic range around 2.5 pH (similar to battery acid). Have you ever wondered why millions of Americans consume massive quantities of “diet sodas” and never lose any weight? Furthermore, we use too many drugs, which are acid forming, in addition to artificial chemical sweeteners like NutraSweet, Equal, Splenda and Aspartame, which are all extremely acid forming. Coffee, caffeine, sugar and smoking also contribute to raising the acid levels in your body, thereby contributing to many serious health problems.
One of the best ways to correct an overly acid body is to correct our diet and lifestyle!
Certain foods you eat can mess up your internal neighborhood. They leave an acid "mess" that the body must neutralize and eliminate. These messy foods are essentially high-protein foods - meats, pastas, dairy, nuts and grains. They are acid producing foods. Most of us eat a lot of acid ash foods. That's our tradition, and a large part of our economy.
Certain other foods you eat will improve the environment of your body. These alkaline producing foods tend to be fruits and vegetables.
The 80/20 Rule for Better Health
If you are very healthy and have no chronic health problems, in order to maintain your health, your diet should consist of 60% alkaline forming foods and 40% acid forming foods. If you already have a chronic health problem and want to restore your health, your diet should consist of 80% alkaline forming foods and 20% acid forming foods.
Now ask yourself, “Is my diet 60-80% fruits and vegetables and 20-40% meat, breads, dairy, pastas and grains?” Probably NOT. Most Americans have eaten “backwards” all their life. In fact, most of my patients when they first see me are backwards eaters. They eat about 80% meat, breads, dairy, pastas/grains and only 20% fruits and vegetables.
Modern medicine has prolonged our lives, but the quality is terrible! Americans are the unhealthiest people in the world. Most people think that their health issues are a result of aging and genetics, however, diet and lifestyle are the main culprits responsible for poor health. Backwards eating people are guaranteed to have more chronic problems as they age (arthritis, osteoporosis, gall bladder dysfunction, headaches, heart disease, joint pain etc.) Following the 80/20 Rule, that is 80% fruit and vegetables and 20% meat, breads, dairy pasta and grains will add years to your life and life to your years.
Our efforts to establish and maintain good pH levels are often thwarted by 2 main things:
- What we put into our bodies (eating, drinking, breathing, absorbing, etc.)
- What we are not taking into our bodies that we should (nutrients, vitamins, minerals, water, etc.)
In my next article, I will share with you a more extensive list of foods that will increase your pH…resulting in better health and a list of acid producing foods to limit. We will also explore specific nutritional supplements which will raise pH levels. I will also reveal shocking research that explains how too much acid in the body can lead to heart disease, serious blood sugar imbalances, bone loss and joint pain!
In the meantime…I invite you to join the pH challenge and test your pH! See where you stand…are you too acidic? If so, try to eat more fruits and vegetables this month and we will review some healthy tips next month on continuing to raise your pH to a slightly alkaline level, thereby bringing you better health and quality of life! Remember… when your body hums along smoothly and easily, your health and resultant quality of life has a good chance of doing the same. Your pH knowledge will help you create an internal environment that not only fights diseases but thrives!
"The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease."
- Thomas Edison