According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a large number of Americans take highly acidic foods and drinks. Some of these foods include dairy products, carbonated drinks, processed meats, and refined grains. The problem with such foods and drinks is they turn the body’s pH level from alkaline to acidic. As a result, one risks developing health complications such as obesity and premature aging. The hood news is eating high alkaline foods can return the body’s pH to its optimum range of 7.35 to 7.45.
The Importance of Maintaining an Optimum pH
Contrary to popular belief, the body’s pH varies from one part to another. For instance, the stomach is typically highly acidic, with a pH value of between 1.35 and 3.5, according to the National Institutes of Health, which is the optimum pH value for digestion. The skin’s highly acidic pH of 4 to 6.5 is also necessary to prevent microbial overgrowth. However, blood must have a slightly alkaline pH ranging anywhere from 7.35 to 7.45. Take note that the ideal pH is 7.365.
Studies have shown that a slightly alkaline body pH has several health benefits. Firstly, a study published by the NIH found that an alkaline diet prevents muscle loss as one ages. This is good news for people suffering from diseases such as sepsis, renal failure, and diabetic ketosis. Secondly, a study published in the Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology found that an alkaline diet is able to reduce chronic low back pain.
Thirdly, some chemotherapy agents are more effective in an alkaline media. This is according to research published in the British Journal of Radiology. Some of the chemotherapeutic agents that require an alkaline pH include Adriamycin and epirubicin.
Fourthly, an alkaline diet enhances the body’s production of growth hormones according to research published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. Fifthly, people who eat high alkaline foods benefit from improved memory and cognition according to a study published in the Journal of Endocrinology.
High Alkaline Foods
One of the leafy greens that you should eat in abundance to counter high levels of acid in your body is spinach. Moreover, it is rich in folate, vitamin C, manganese, potassium, vitamin K, iron, calcium, dietary fiber, and vitamin E.
The average cucumber consists of 95% water content. This makes cucumbers one of the perfect bases for preparing alkaline soups, juices, and smoothies. At the same time, cucumbers contain beneficial antioxidants such as pinoresinol, secoisolariciresinol, and lariciresinol.
Bell pepper is another alkaline food that one can prepare in different ways such as fried, grilled, or roasted. Bell pepper also flavonoids, hydroxycinnamic acids, and carotenoids.
When preparing alkaline high foods, you should include garlic. It has several health benefits such as lowering blood pressure and boosting the body’s immunity.
Although some people worry about the high fat content in avocado, such worries are misplaced. This is because avocado contains good fats or high-density lipoproteins (HDL). Furthermore, avocado is a high alkaline, nutrient dense food that you can prepare and eat as a salad or smoothie.
Just like cucumber, celery has high water content and is an alkaline vegetable. You can use celery as a base for soups, juices, or smoothies. It also contains vitamin C. Other high alkaline foods that you could include in your diet are watermelons, pineapples, passion fruits, asparagus, apples, grapes, raspberries, oranges, pumpkins, bananas, beets, cauliflowers, peas, and lettuce.
The body requires an alkaline pH of about 7.4 to perform well and remain healthy. One can maintain this pH by eating basic foods such as garlic, asparagus, spinach, cucumber, and celery.