“Every human being is the author of his own health or disease.” Buddha
If we want to remain healthy, we should know more and more about how our body functions. Period. Ignorance is not an excuse, but suffering especially when we are the authors of our own health or disease.
The term pH balance is a bit technical but very pertinent for all of us to know. Balancing pH is very important for our long-term health. pH means the power of Hydrogen ion in a solution. Our body comprises of 70% water and hence contains many solutions. Therefore, for a body pH level means acidic or alkaline nature of a solution. Higher pH is an indication of a more alkaline oxygen rich solution and lower pH means more acidic oxygen deprived solution.
The food we eat, after the digestion process, produces either acid or alkaline and some are even neutral (It is not the acidic or alkaline nature of the food but what happens after digestion is important). Research shows that unless the body’s pH level is slightly alkaline, the body cannot heal itself. No matter what means you choose to take care of your health, it won’t be effective until the pH level is balanced. Our body does hard work to maintain pH balance.
The pH range is from 0 to 14, with 7.0 being neutral. Anything above 7.0 is alkaline, anything below 7.0 is considered acidic.
If your body’s pH is not balanced there are health consequences. For example, you cannot effectively assimilate vitamins, minerals and food supplements.
An acidic pH can occur from poor nutrition, lack of exercise, smoking, unhealthy lifestyle, stress and eating excessive acidic foods, emotional stress, toxic overload, and/or immune reactions or any process that deprives the cells of oxygen and other nutrients. The body will try to compensate for acidic pH by using alkaline minerals. If the diet does not contain enough minerals to compensate, a build up of acids in the cells will occur.
Acidosis is a condition in which our body becomes too acidic. This condition forces the body to borrow minerals like calcium, sodium, potassium, and magnesium from vital organs and bones to neutralize the acid and safely remove it from the body. Because of this strain, the body can suffer severe and prolonged damage due to high acidity. This condition can go undetected for years.
Secondly, when our body repeatedly leeches calcium from the bones, we may start to develop conditions such as osteoporosis. Acidosis is also a major factor in stressing our body and increasing our cortisol levels, which affects sleep patterns.
This pH imbalance and acidosis can cause;
- Cardiovascular damage
- Weight gain, obesity, and diabetes.
- Bladder and kidney conditions, including kidney stones.
- Immune deficiency.
- Acceleration of free radical damage, possibly contributing to cancerous mutations.
- Increased body fat and a reduction in muscle mass.
- Hormone concerns.
- Premature aging.
- Osteoporosis; weak, brittle bones, hip fractures, and bone spurs.
- Joint pain, aching muscles, and lactic acid build-up.
- Low energy and chronic fatigue.
- Slow digestion and elimination.
- Dry Skin
Our body pH affects everything.
Cancer and pH Balance
“Cancer is not compatible in a healthy pH environment full of oxygen. For example, cancer of the heart doesn’t exist. This is because, blood flowing from the lungs into the heart, are at the highest pH and oxygen levels within the entire body. As the blood travels through the lungs, acidic toxins are thrown out of the system leaving it rich with oxygen and a high blood pH. In the absence of oxygen, glucose undergoes fermentation to lactic acid. This causes the pH of the cell to drop even lower. Urine and saliva pH of terminal cancer patients almost always runs between 4.0 and 5.5. When cancer goes into metastases the pH drops even lower.” Keiichi Morishita, Author: Hidden Truth of Cancer,
The goal is usually to eat approximately 70-80% alkaline foods along with only about 20-30% acidifying foods. If this level is maintained in the diet, the end result is a slightly alkaline pH in the body, which is perfect for optimum good health.
Dr. Renate Collier creator and promoter of de- acidifying therapy, in his medical practice and scientific work proposed certain principals. The principals included eating three meals a day at proper times and in accordance with the biological clock. In addition, the principles also stated that a person should eat in moderation and not just to feel full. Eating food in moderation without haste and chewing food thoroughly were also some of the principles proposed by Dr. Renate Collier.
His propagation resonates with what ancient Indian Yogis have suggested. Read: When do Yoga Practices fail?
Following food chart will guide you to choose the food to remain Alkaline and therefore healthy. (Source: Nature Cure by INYC, Bangalore)
All kinds of vegetables, fresh fruits, potatoes, buttermilk, fresh lemon, coconut, dates, almonds, skimmed milk, yogurt, olives, dry fruits, sprouts, whole floor/unpolished rice.
All flesh food, fish, pulses, white bread, polished rice, nuts, confectionery, sweets, coffee, tea, cocoa, alcohol, boiled buffalo milk, fried foods, processed food, powder milk, chilled foods, cheese, white sugar, beans, onions, peanuts, tomatoes, pickles, jam, preservatives, high protein food, concentrated food including ice cream.
Remember, the agenda is to balance (80 :20) acid forming and alkaline food and not to avoid acidic food completely. But also keep in mind: Our body pH affects everything.
One thought on “How food imbalance is ruining your health”
Ayurveda recognizes more qualities in food than the typical western categorization of acid and alkaline. The main attributes are: the 5 Elements, the 3 Doshas,the 6 Tastes ,the 3 Gunas,the 3 Vipakas (Post Digestive Taste). Ayurveda has a unique approach to break down tastes scientifically, each having its own therapeutic effects, from the first taste to entering the body to being absorbed. The six tastes distinguished in the Ayurveda are Sweet, Salty, Sour, Pungent, Astringent and Bitter. These tastes originate from the five elements and transmit their properties. After rasa has been assimilated – generally 6 to 8 hours after ingestion – a post digestive ‘taste’ emerges. The six tastes are consolidated, leaving three post digestive tastes that remain. The post digestive taste has a pronounced effect upon one’s body and on the pathophysiology of a disease,which leave little or no sense impression on the tongue, is more potent and of greater clinical importance , precisely the reverse of the case with food materials in which the experience of gustatory taste is a major element. By way of illustration: Sweet and Salty flavors digest into sweet, sweet is nourishing and moistening to the tissues and also has a mildly laxative effect. The cooling and anti-inflammatory nature of sweet make it beneficial to pitta while its wet and anabolic properties will increase kapha.
There is a greater need to incorporate Ayurveda Fundamentals while understanding the imbalances caused by food. While incorporating these fundamentals in ones diet and lifestyle and while prescribing a chikitsa, imbalances are addressed in their root and a sustained balance of good health is assured, this understanding in Ayurveda,The Indian System of Medicine is a step ahead of just the concept of acid and alkaline.