Alkaline Foods and Acid Foods

I was asked today about alkaline and acidic foods and how they can affect our health.

Acidity and alkalinity are measured in pH (potential of hydrogen). The pH scale goes from 0 to 14, with 0 the most acidic, and 14 the most alkaline. Ideally, our pH should stay on the alkaline side 7.

The pH of stomach acid is 1 (acidic), wine is 3.5, water is 7 (neutral),  sea water is 8.5, and baking soda is 12 (alkaline).

Often, an acidic-tasting food can be alkalizing. Citric fruits are a great example. Lemons are acidic, but they actually cause an alkalizing effect on the body because the minerals they leave behind after digestion help remove hydrogen ions, decreasing the acidity of the body. At times the term “residue” or “ash” are used to explain the effect of a food on the body. A food with an acid ash after digestion contributes hydrogen ions, making the body more acidic. A food with an alkaline ash after digestion removes hydrogen ions, making the body more alkaline.

Acidosis, or over-acidity in the body, is one of the basic causes systemic inflammation related diseases such as arthritis and rheumatic diseases.  The basic western diet consisting of high-fat, high-sugar diet,  promotes acidosis which destroys bones, because the body has to steal alkalizing minerals such as calcium to keep the blood pH from dropping into the acid range.

ALKALINE FOODS:

Most raw fruits and vegetables (except nightshades), mineral water, pumpkin seed, lentils, seaweed, sea vegetables, sweet potato, lime, lemons, nectarine, persimmon, raspberry, watermelon, tangerine, and pineapple, apricots, spices, kambucha, cashews, chestnuts, pepper, kohlrabi, parsnip, garlic, asparagus, kale, parsley, endive, arugula, mustard green, ginger root, broccoli, grapefruit, cantaloupe, honeydew, citrus, olive, dewberry, carrots, loganberry, and mango.

ACIDIC FOODS:

Tabletop sweeteners like (NutraSweet, Spoonful, Sweet ‘N Low, Equal or Aspartame), pudding, jam, jelly, table salt, beer, yeast, hops, malt, sugar, cocoa, white vinegar, processed cheese, ice cream, beef, lobster, pheasant, barley, wheat, hazelnuts, walnuts, brazil nuts, fried foods, soybean, and soft drinks, especially the cola type.

To neutralize a glass of cola with a pH of 2.5, it would take 32 glasses of alkaline water with a pH of 10.

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About Christine, Chicago's Fitness and Nutrition Consultant

I am a fitness and nutrition consultant who loves taking snapshots.
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