Most patients never think of the acid/alkaline balance of their blood, but a proper pH is a crucial aspect of overall health.
Many doctors stress the importance of reducing acidity and increasing alkalinity with an alkaline diet because a balanced pH helps protect us from the inside out. Disease and disorder, they say, cannot take root in a body whose pH is in balance.
What Is pH Balance?
What we call “pH” is short for the “potential of hydrogen,” or the measure of the hydrogen ion concentration of a solution. pH is also a measure of the acidity or alkalinity of our body’s fluids and tissues. It’s measured on a pH scale that ranges from 0 to 14. The more acidic a solution is, the lower its pH value. The more alkaline it is, the higher the pH number is. The acidity or alkalinity of different solutions, including human blood, are indicated on the pH scale.
What should a healthy pH of the body be? A pH of 7 is considered neutral, and “neutral” means it is equally acidic as alkaline. Blood pH, as well as the pH in the majority of bodily tissues, should stay around 7.365, while the stomach is at a pH of around 2 in order to break down foods properly. Saliva and urine are typically on the alkaline side, between 6.4–6.8 in a healthy individual.
Alkaline diets have been shown to help restore proper pH levels and have been associated with health improvements including:1
- Protection from heart disease
- Reduced inflammation
- Reductions in muscle spasms
- Better protection against vitamin D deficiency
- Improvement in lower back discomfort
What Causes pH Imbalance?
The Merck Manual’s definition of acidosis is “An overproduction of acid in the blood.”
What can cause a person’s pH level to shift towards a more acidic state, thereby causing imbalance?
In truth, the body almost always does an excellent job at keeping pH levels balanced. Unfortunately, a person holds the key in determining how hard their body must work to achieve this.
An increase in acid overwhelms the body’s acid-base control systems, causing the blood to tend toward acidity. Normally, the kidneys maintain proper balance of pH and electrolyte levels, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium. But when we are exposed to acidic substances, these electrolytes are used to combat acidity.
Basically, a person forces their body to work in overtime to keep their blood at a neutral pH while destroying the nutrient levels the body innately needs to accomplish the task.2
Factors that Contribute to Becoming Acidic
- Alcohol and drug use
- Antibiotic overuse
- Kidney disease or kidney malfunction
- Poor digestion and gut health
- Eating lots of processed and refined foods that are high in sodium, added sugar, refined grains, and preservatives
- Low intake of potassium, calcium, and other minerals
- Low levels of fiber in the diet
- Lack of exercise/sedentary lifestyle
- Excess animal meats in the diet (from non-grass-fed sources)
- Excess hormones from processed foods, health and beauty products, and plastics
How Can We Help the Body Achieve a Healthy Neutral pH Level?
Reduce Intake of Acidic Foods
If a person currently eats a “Standard American Diet,” they’ll likely need to give certain things up in order to eat a diet that’s lower in acidic foods. Acidic foods to limit or eliminate from their diet include:3
- Processed meats such as deli meats, cold cuts, hot dogs, salami, and cured meats
- Foods high in sodium
- Added sugar
- Processed cereal grains, such as corn, wheat, and barley
- Conventional meats (beef, chicken, and pork)
- Fried foods
- Milk and dairy products
- Refined grains including white rice, white bread, pasta, breakfast cereals, etc.
Eat an Alkaline Diet
The best pH balance diet is one that includes lots of green plants and other alkalizing foods. It’s also smart to purchase as much organic food as possible, since crops that are grown in organic, mineral-dense soil tend to be more alkalizing and have higher vitamin and mineral content.
A well-rounded alkaline diet includes:
- Leafy green vegetables—kale, chard, beet greens, dandelion, spinach, wheat grass, alfalfa grass, etc.
- Other non-starchy veggies—mushrooms, tomatoes, avocado, radishes, cucumber, jicama, broccoli, oregano, garlic, ginger, green beans, endive, cabbage, celery, zucchini, and asparagus.
- Raw foods—Uncooked fruits and vegetables are said to be biogenic or “life-giving.” Cooking foods can deplete alkalizing minerals. Increase intake of raw foods and try juicing or lightly steaming fruits and vegetables. Ideally, try to consume a good portion of produce raw or only lightly cooked (such as steamed) as raw foods can help supply high levels of alkalizing minerals.
- Superfoods—maca root, spirulina, sea veggies, bone broth, and green powder mixes that contain chlorophyll.
- Healthy fats—coconut oil, MCT oil, virgin olive oil, fats found in wild-caught fish, grass-fed beef, cage-free eggs, nuts, seeds, and organic grass-fed butter are also good additions to a diet, even if they aren’t necessarily alkalizing.
- Starchy plants—sweet potato, turnips, and beets.
- Plant proteins—almonds, navy beans, lima beans, and most other beans.
- Most fruits—Strangely enough, acidic fruits such as grapefruit and tomatoes don’t create acidity in the body. They do just the opposite and contribute to an alkaline environment. Citrus fruits, dates, and raisins are all very alkalizing and may help prevent acidosis.
- Green drinks (vegetable juices)—Drinks made from green vegetables and grasses in powder form are loaded with alkaline foods and chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is structurally similar to our own blood and alkalizes the blood.4
Reduce Exposure to Drugs, Toxins, and Chemicals
Many different drugs, chemicals, pollutants, and toxins can disturb pH balance and contribute to acidity—such as alcohol, products containing caffeine, acetazolamide, NSAIDs, and aspirin.
It’s important to address any underlying health conditions that might be causing a person to rely on these drugs regularly. For example, might a lack of sleep, stress, sedentary lifestyle, or even allergies be contributing to health problems? Try to determine what types of steps can be taken to naturally reduce the need for medications and drugs.
Greens First® PRO – pH Alkalizer PM Capsules
Depending on a person’s current state of health and their goals, they might have even better success with reversing acidity by adhering to a routine of nighttime alkaline protection.
Designed for nighttime alkaline protection that keeps the body’s pH balanced, helping to reduce inflammation, and relieve the discomfort or illness it can cause, pH Alkalizer PM™ has multiple ingredients that help achieve that goal.
pH 7.5™, a blend of Fruits and Vegetables hand-picked for their alkalizing potential, is a vital ingredient in pH Alkalizer PM™. These ingredients may help the body achieve optimal pH balance by reducing acid overload.*
FruiteX-B® Calcium Fructoborate, a patented mineral complex, is another unique component of pH Alkalizer PM™. FruiteX-B® has been shown in human clinical research to be an effective way to modulate key markers of inflammation.*
Spectra™ Total ORACFN is a proprietary blend of high-quality fruit, vegetable, and herb extracts that produce an unrivaled full-spectrum antioxidant. It’s made up of five different phytochemical formulations to neutralize each of the five different types of free radicals linked to unhealthy aging and chronic illnesses.*
Help to Alkalize the Body’s pH*
Internal pH appears to play an important role in overall health. The body is always working to maintain a delicate pH balance and losing balance might lead to major health problems. Our bodies are designed to function at a slightly alkaline pH, but without pH Alkalizer PM™, today’s fast-paced and stressful lifestyle combined with the typical modern diet of acid-forming processed foods may be overwhelming our bodies’ natural ability to handle acidity and maintain an adequate pH balance.*
Help Soothe Inflammation Caused By pH Imbalance*
Even a minor increase in acidity can cause health problems such as bone health issues, inflammation, and glucose metabolism disorders. Long-term, chronic inflammation can cause further metabolic disease and discomfort. pH Alkalizer PM™ has natural, vegan ingredients that help to lower levels of C-Reactive Protein, an important marker of inflammation, while making it easier for the body to maintain a balanced pH and avoid the issues that acidity can cause.*
Fight Excessive Free Radicals*
Free Radicals can wreak havoc on a healthy body, causing premature aging or even chronic illness. Antioxidants, such as those present in berries and other fruits or vegetables, help fight against Free Radicals and prevent them from causing harm. pH Alkalizer PM™ acts as a comprehensive full-spectrum antioxidant to fight all five of the most harmful types of Free Radicals and helps to keep the body healthy.*
pH is a measure of the acidity or alkalinity of our body’s fluids and tissues. pH is measured on a pH scale ranging from 0 to 14. The healthiest pH level for the human body is slightly more alkaline than acidic, with an optimal pH of 7.365. The causes of acidosis (too much acidity) include a poor diet, poor gut health, certain medications, and many other unhealthy lifestyle habits.
An alkaline diet is one that includes whole foods that have positive effects on the bodily systems and processes needed to maintain healthy pH. An alkaline diet includes lots of fresh vegetables and whole fruits, some raw foods, green juices, beans, nuts and healthy fats. Foods that are acidic and can contribute to pH imbalance include: high-sodium foods, processed grains, too much meat and animal protein, added sugars, and conventional milk. Changing to an alkaline diet and improving general lifestyle habits can go a long way to maintain a healthy acid/alkaline balance.
Dr. Donald L. Hayes, D.C. is President of Ceautamed Worldwide the makers of the Greens First product brand. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Oregon and Doctorate in Chiropractic from the University of Western States.
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*These products and statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.