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Acidity to Alkalinity

Wellness Juicing Culture
By: Brooke R. and Olga G. August 3, 2017

Life on Earth depends on appropriate pH levels in and around living organisms and cells. For the environment to thrive it must maintain a balanced pH level, but due to the rapid growth of industrialization our planet is suffering. Combating harmful free radicals, wet and dry deposits of acid rain, we see how our health and the nature surrounding us is being directly impacted. When we recognize pH levels go out of whack, it is easy to see how clearly the pH scale is correlated to our survival. 

As an example, University of Birmingham released research that shows how in the past 100 years, the pH of the ocean has dropped from 8.2 to 8.1 because of increasing CO2 deposition. This decrease on the pH scale may not sound like much, but this has a fatal impact on life in the ocean. We are looking at the collapse of coral reefs, and life under the sea depends on it.

To make matters worse, our land and soil quality is also undergoing some changes with the rise of industrialization. Acidic soil has been a result, where we see levels below 6 causing a decrease of calcium and magnesium. pH of the soil has considerable influence on the mineral content of the food we eat; with ideal pH between 6 and 7 for overall availability of essential nutrients. 

Did you know?  The acidity or alkalinity of a substance is measured using pH. The pH scale runs from 0 to 14, with 0 being the most acidic, 14 being the most alkaline, and 7 being neutral.

Maintaining a slightly alkaline pH is major key to good health and well-being

Just like our environment, the human body is an indivisible, interdependently integrated organism, and not just merely a composite of various unrelated parts. A human body has many mechanisms that work together to maintain a proper pH balance. A tightly controlled pH level of about 7.4 (a slightly alkaline range of 7.35 to 7.45) is the best place to be. If your body’s pH varies too much from this ideal, it becomes difficult for various enzymes to function properly.

When you drop below this range, the body may need to take minerals such as calcium, potassium, and sodium from your bones to neutralize the acid. This can put your body under a lot of strain, and may be of the lead to acidosis (acidic blood.) As a result, the body’s energy decreases, cells cannot communicate properly, fungus and bacteria starts to grow out of control, and the body’s natural healing and defense system break down.

If the body begins to breakdown in this way, many negative symptoms will occur, such as something like acidosis. Acidosis occurs when your kidneys and lungs cannot keep your body’s pH in balance. While the body naturally produces acid, these major organs can usually compensate for this slight pH imbalance. Acidosis directly correlates to excessive acid accumulating in the body, and can show up in either the respiratory or metabolic systems. 

 

With all of this knowledge, we know you may have a couple questions…

“How do I know if my body is acidic?”

Maintaining this ideal slightly alkaline state has become a constant challenge due to environmental factors, acid-forming functions that take place within the body, lack of physical activity, and acid-producing foods we consume. 

Staying conscious about our pH balance can keep us in our best shape so we wanted to share the 3 ways you can determine whether your body is too acidic:

  1. At-home test containing pH strips. pH strips are pieces of paper that change color depending on the pH of  the acidity or alkalinity of a liquid.  pH strips are relatively accurate way of measuring the pH of any liquid, in our case saliva or urine. If your saliva pH consistently falls below 6.5, you are acidic. If it consistently reads above 7.0, you could be too alkaline.
  2. Blood pH test: This test is not as convenient as the saliva and urine pH test, but it is usually more accurate. To do the blood pH test, you will need to visit your doctor and get your blood drawn. Your blood pH level plays an important role for your overall health, because if your blood pH level is acidic, your cells cannot function properly. Acidic blood also creates an environment for harmful microorganisms and cancer to thrive in.  The normal pH of human blood is slightly higher than 7.0. To be more specific, most experts agree that the normal pH of blood is between 7.35-7.45. If your blood pH is lower than 7.3, it is considered somewhat acidic.
  3. Monitor whether you have the following recurring symptoms:
  • You feel fatigued, even when you’ve had enough sleep.
  • You feel depressed or have a hard time enjoying things that you used to.
  • You find yourself especially irritable for no discernable reason.
  • You feel like you cannot focus or have “brain fog” often.
  • You frequently develop infections, colds and flus.
  • Your skin is dry, even in the warmer months.
  • You have acne or other skin problems.
  • You have hormonal imbalance issues.
  • You frequently develop yeast infections.
  • You feel like your digestion is sluggish, or frequently experience constipation or diarrhea.
  • You find yourself becoming short of breath often.
  • You frequently experience joint pain.
  • You often experience headaches.
  • You experience chronic allergies or sinus pain.
  • You suffer from chronic pain that is not due to an injury or a medical condition.
  • Your neck often feels stiff or sore.
  • You have sensitive gums and teeth.

“What can I do to maintain my pH at a slightly alkaline level?”

A clear and quick method to prevent your blood from becoming too acidic would be to avoid eating processed/junk food. Also, stay away from soft drinks, carbonated beverages, and drinks that have a lot of refined sugar. This triple threat will only rob your body of certain nutrients that are important for neutralizing acid in your blood.

Bringing the body’s pH closer to the normal range helped patients get rid of many of their health complaints. The idea that various foods influence the pH of the body dates back as far back as the early 1900s. At that time, a community of doctors began studying the pH-altering effects of different foods where they discovered that a few were “neutral” in their effects, while most foods were either “alkaline-producing” or “acid-producing.”

One of the best ways to bring your blood pH back to its normal state is to eat mostly organic, alkaline food + drink water. Eating a diet of 75–80 percent alkaline-forming food and minimal in acid-forming foods is the best way to maintain a slightly alkaline pH in your body. (Reference the chart you see above ^)

Moreover, making and consuming fresh vegetable and leafy green juices on a daily basis will jumpstart the process of alkalizing your body. This is why many people feel so good after they begin a juicing program.

Back to basics – Remember to drink alkaline water on a daily basis! Water can increase our energy and wellbeing due to having less toxic chemicals in your blood.