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What is the Alkaline Acid Diet?

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  • Written By: Hillary Flynn
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 06 December 2016
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The alkaline acid diet is a nutritional approach based on the premise that optimal health demands that the acid and alkaline levels in the body must be in balance. Ingested food controls these levels, with each food supplying a different degree of acidity. The level of acidity is called the hydrogen potential (pH). Acids release hydrogen ions when dissolved in water and alkaline substances, or bases, do not. Sometimes it is easy to identify acidic foods by their taste, but this is not a foolproof method. Lemons, for example, taste very acidic but are actually alkaline-forming when digested.

Acidity is measured with a numerical pH scale that indicates a window of acceptable levels. When the body's biochemical balance falls outside this window, it is either in a state of acidosis, or too much acid; or alkalosis, which indicates alkaline levels are too high. Either of these conditions can have detrimental effects on health, but the most common issue is acidosis. Acidosis can interrupt enzyme processes, cause inflammation of tissues, promote tumor growth, or result in the loss of minerals such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, and sodium. An alkaline acid diet is meant to prevent these issues.

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When planning an alkaline acid diet, one must first become familiar with typical acid levels in foods. The best rule to follow is to eat a balanced, varied diet with the primary focus on low alkaline foods like squash, soybeans, millet, wild rice, quinoa, and strawberries, and low acid foods such as sweet potatoes, blue berries, whole milk, oysters, and cottage cheese. High acid foods such as beef, pork, processed cheeses, peanuts, and coffee should be consumed in smaller quantities. High alkaline foods such as raw spinach, broccoli, raisins, and herbal teas should be eaten in moderation as well.

Symptoms that may indicate the need for an alkaline acid diet to restore the body's biochemical balance are: fatigue, weakness, insomnia, mental fogginess, joint pain, water retention, muscle aches, and headaches. To confirm an alkaline acid imbalance, pH test strips can be purchased. These allow the individual to check acid levels in saliva and urine. In addition to selecting low acid and low alkaline foods for the alkaline acid diet, one should also reduce the amount of food eaten in one sitting and chew well to ensure the alkaline properties of saliva are able to successfully break down acids before they enter the digestive system.

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umbra21
Post 3

@browncoat - Frankly, there's been no scientific evidence that this diet does anything at all. Most foods become the same acidity when they are digested because the stomach acids have to dissolve them anyway.

I think it's a shame that scientists have to run around and debunk diets like this so that people won't be duped out of their money. It's a waste of their time, when they could be following research on real methods of making people healthier.

browncoat
Post 2

I had a woman tell me the other day that she only ever gets her water from this place that removes all the impurities and makes sure the pH balance is right. She was very serious about it and said that the local water supplies were so terribly acidic she knew they were doing harm to all of us.

I guess local water supplies might not be perfect, and maybe the foods I eat aren't perfect either. But, you know, people in my family live to their 90's and they've been drinking the same water and eating the same foods.

I think these kinds of acid alkaline balance diets are mostly a way to con people out of their money

. Even if they do work, they can't do all that much good or they would be more well known.

And I'd rather have a relatively stress free life and live to 90 than worry about everything I'm putting into my mouth and live to 95, when it comes down to it.

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