To lead a healthy life, it is necessary that the pH of our body is regulated. It must be rather alkaline. The key to the pH or alkaline diet is to increase the amount of alkaline foods and reduce the consumption of acidic foods. As a result, processed foods, animal proteins, sugar, and caffeine are reduced to the maximum, among other foods. The objective is to eliminate acidic toxins and increase the consumption of natural foods rich in alkaline minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium.
The Function of pH in Nutrition
To understand the function of pH, we must know that acidity is an important chemical property of blood and other organic fluids. It is expressed in the pH scale, in which 7.0 is the neutral value. Values above 7.0 are considered basic or alkaline, and below, acid.
Blood fulfills two important functions: Transporting nutrients and oxygen and removing toxic residues of metabolism. These residues are acidic in nature and must be evacuated through the liver, kidneys, lungs or skin. To perform these functions, the pH of the blood should lean a bit towards the alkaline side of the spectrum. Therefore, under normal circumstances, the blood is slightly alkaline, with a pH that varies between 7.35 and 7.45.
“In this sense, the balance of the pH in the body is the first line of defense and the best resistance against diseases”.
This is because the causative elements of various diseases cannot survive in an alkaline state, but are strengthened in acidic environments.
The Characteristic Foods of the pH Diet
Hydrating well is one of the keys. The pancreas uses water to alkalize the food that leaves the stomach and enters the intestines. The brain, on the other hand, needs water to carry out the chemical reactions that direct the body. Thus, drinking water in correct amounts is the most important part of the pH diet. Alkaline foods are found mainly in fruits, vegetables (green vegetables, whole grains, spices and probiotics) and in honey. Acidic foods are meats, cheeses, cereals and alcohol.
In a more extended list of alkalizing foods, we can find:
- Fruits that are not too ripe
- Mineral water
- Almond milk
And here, the list of some commonly consumed acidifying foods:
- Fruit juice
- Refined cereals
- Meats and organ meats
- Cured cheese
- Yogurt or curd
The pH diet is indicated for those who want to fight obesity. It is also indicated for those who want to improve their health, prevent inflammatory problems and eliminate toxins from the body.
The Perfect Complement to the pH Diet
Interestingly, food is not everything in the pH diet. The most advisable thing is to practice exercises adapted to the physical constitution, to the age and to the state of health. Of course, aerobic exercise, by increasing the consumption and flow of oxygen in the body, is the perfect complement to this diet.
The Problems of an Excess of Acidic Foods
In the short term, the excessive consumption of acidic foods generates decay and inflammation of the gums due to inhibition of the salivary glands. In the medium term, the secretion of hydrochloric acid in the stomach decreases. However, in the long term, a rebound effect occurs. The glands are stimulated and secrete more acid, causing chronic acidity and increasing the risk of gastritis or ulcer.
It is very important not to abuse the antacids to combat stomach acidity, as they further destabilizes the acid-base balance. Although strong acids cause the described symptoms, small stimuli or weak organic acids balance the pH. Therefore, one of the pillars of a consistent diet is to drink a glass of water with a few drops of lemon at breakfast.
In short, this is a diet that allows us to keep the pH of our body balanced. We must do everything possible to tilt it towards the alkaline side, which will give us benefits and avoid problems derived from the excessive consumption of acidic products.
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