pH: the real facts:Maintaining a healthy acid-alkali balance

Suspect acidity if you:
* take excessive strenuous exercise, which causes lactic acid to accumulate in the blood
* are diabetic, which tends to cause acidosis through loss of potassium, sodium and ketones in the urine
* suffer from chronic diarrhoea, which can cause acidosis
* have kidney problems, which can also cause acidosis (Kidney Int Suppl, 1999; 73: S85-8)
* follow the ketogenic diet, which works for epileptics, but has a deliberately acidifying effect
* are even mildly lactose-intolerant, as dairy products can cause lactic acidosis (Rose BD, Post TW. Clinical Physiology of Acid-Base and Electrolyte Disorders, 5th edn. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 2001).


If you are acidic (which is most likely):
* find out your metabolic type (see box, page 8)
* eat more ‘acidic’ foods if you are oxidative-dominant (need more protein to feel well) and more alkalinising foods if you are autonomic-dominant (need more carbohydrates to feel well)
* drink plenty of water; alkaline water is recommended by many practitioners, although its additional value is not yet clinically proven
* supplement with potassium bicarbonate
* cut down on salt, or add potassium citrate to it (Eur J Nutr, 2001; 40: 200-13)
* cut down on alcohol
* cut down on refined carbohydrates
* watch your intake of sugar and even fructose, which can cause acidosis when given intravenously
* supplement with vitamins B1 (thiamine) and B2 (riboflavin), both of which can help to correct severe acidosis. One of the hidden and largely unknown effects of a thiamine deficiency is metabolic acidosis. In one study of workers complaining of weakness and oedema in the legs, all were found to be deficient in thiamine (J Emerg Med, 2004; 26: 301-3).
* check your medications, as many drugs like aspirin, iron, epinephrine and metformin can cause acidosis (Borron SW. Lactic acidosis. Emedicine, 7 April 2005).


Suspect alkalinity if you:
* take steroids, diuretic drugs, antacids or laxatives (Chapter 11: Acid-base disturbances, in Bennett JC, Plum F, eds. Cecil Textbook of Medicine, 20th edn. Philadelphia: WB Saunders, 1996)
* have a kidney disorder.

What Doctors Don't Tell You Written by What Doctors Don't Tell You

Get the Healthiest Newsletter!

Get a dose of Healthy delivered straight to your inbox. Each FREE issue features amazing content that will elevate your Body, Mind, and Spirit.

Your data is never shared with 3rd parties

Body+Mind+Spirit

TRANSFORM YOUR LIFE?

Try the Internet's Longest-Running Wellness Program.