A patient recently told me that she was eating lots of “alkaline” foods.
When I asked her why, she said, “Everyone knows that cancer and other diseases happen when your body is too acid.”
Perhaps you have also heard this. If so, you might be surprised to know that this is one of the biggest myths circulating in natural health circles. It’s reached the status of an urban legend.
Let’s look at the real facts about acid and alkaline foods to clear this issue up once and for all.
Let’s start with the basics.
Your body is designed to function in a fairly narrow range of acid/alkaline balance. Completely neutral on the acid/alkaline scale is 7.0. Your body normally functions in the very slightly blood alkaline range of 7.35 to 7.45.
Anything that causes the blood to move outside of this range in either direction causes big trouble for your health. We’re talking life support if this happens. And it’s just as dangerous to become too alkaline as it is to be too acidic.
Acidity and alkalinity also are different depending on where they are measured. For example, urine’s median point on the acid/alkaline scale is 6.2 (slightly acid). Saliva’s median point is 6.7 (slightly acid).
In addition, Emanuel Revici, MD, showed irrefutably that a healthy body cycles between slightly more acid and slightly more alkaline twice a day. In other words, the body naturally needs to cycle through being more acid and more alkaline a couple of times every 24 hours.
This means your body needs both slightly acid and slightly alkaline qualities over time and the ideal pH number depends on what tissue or fluid is being measured.
Also, depending on how your body metabolizes foods, you may actually need to be slightly more acid or slightly more alkaline in general.
As you can see, it’s somewhat more complicated than just eating acid & alkaline foods.
Take the example my patient gave about cancer. While it’s true that cancer always starts out creating acidity in the local area surrounding it, once it reaches the tissue level it can become either acid or alkaline. There are tumors that thrive at either end of the acid/alkaline spectrum.
On top of that, cancer can switch its pH (acid to alkaline or vice-versa) as a defense. This explains why some treatments can work initially but later fail as the cancer adapts.
But there is good news in all of this.
Because keeping your body in an ideal range of pH is crucial for health and survival, your body’s self-regulating mechanisms always work towards maintaining balance. This acid/alkaline issue is so important that your body will almost always compensate for any swings too far in either direction. The only exception is when your internal self-regulating processes are themselves compromised.
In other words, when it comes to adjusting acid/alkaline balance, the body’s self-regulating mechanisms are usually more powerful than food.
However that doesn’t mean you can just eat anything you like. Ultimately every bite you take has an effect on these very self-regulating mechanisms. Once they no longer adapt effectively, any number of imbalances can occur. That’s when disease happens.
So rather than focus on eating to become more alkaline, it’s ultimately much more important to focus on eating to maintain healthy balance. And since each person is different, the foods that accomplish this are also different for each person.
Even so, there are rules that apply to everyone. In general you want to avoid processed, packaged, refined and unnatural foods. By eating whole, fresh foods in their natural state, you’ll go a long way towards improving your overall health and quality of life.
But what do you do if you have noticed health issues starting to show up?
For example, chronic aches & pains, frequent injuries, catching colds more easily, fatigue, mood swings and loss of mental focus are all indications of imbalances in your health.
If you’re experiencing any of these, I recommend Metabolic Typing® to identify the exact foods that will act as medicine for you. Eating those foods in the right proportions will go a long way towards helping your body restore natural balance and healthy function. When that happens, you’ll be able to say goodbye to all those annoying symptoms and enjoy life more.
William Wolcott, communication on the MT Advisor’s Forum
Suzan Dixon, “Is Your Acidic Diet Killing You?“