The pH Balance Diet is also known as the ‘Alkaline Diet’ and has been popularized recently by celebrities.
Many nutritionists energetically advocate it, including the well-known Patrick Holford.
The idea is that you can change your blood and other body fluids to an alkaline state and start to feel the relief that comes from reversing their acidity.
Acidity is claimed to be the root cause of nearly all disease.
What Can You Expect from Following the pH Balance Diet?
A very good outcome from following the pH Balance Diet will be that your health should improve. Why? Because the diet emphasizes eating a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables.
The downside? It could be difficult to follow long-term. Once your motivation flags you may start feeling deprived. After all you would have to give up many foods you may be used to eating and enjoy, for example wheat products, milk and milk products, eggs and fish, not to mention sugar, caffeine and alcohol.
How Does It Work?
To make it clearer take a look at the chart below:
In case you’re wondering what ‘pH’ stands for, it is ‘parts hydrogen’ and is a measurement of the acidity or alkalinity of a substance on a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being the most acidic and 10 being the most alkaline. A reading of 7 is ‘neutral’, neither acidic nor alkaline. A pH of 7,4 (slightly alkaline) is considered optimal for our bodies.
Each of the foods in the chart have been measured for either their alkalinity or acidity forming attributes. The issue is not whether a food is acidic or alkaline but whether it BECOMES so on being processed by your body.
For example, a lemon is an acidic fruit, however, on being digested it takes on alkaline FORMING attributes and will leave an alkaline residue in your body. Meat, on the other hand, is ALKALINE on your dinner plate, yet leaves an ACIDIC residue. Therefore meat is categorized as an Acidic FORMING food. The foods allowed on pH balance Diet are based on whether they are either acid or alkaline FORMING or not.
Testing the pH of your urine first thing in the morning is encouraged to track your progress towards a more alkaline condition
Formulators of the pH Balance Diet tell us that most of us are suffering from low grade ‘acidosis’ because of what we eat. Too much emphasis on acid forming foods like meat and dairy and not nearly enough of alkaline forming foods like fruit and vegetables.
Some claimed symptoms of acidosis range from aches and pains to sleeping problems, stress and more serious conditions like arthritis, osteoporosis and cancer.
DO I HAVE ACIDOSIS?
If you suffer from 3 or more of the following symptoms, you could indeed have low grade acidosis and would be a good candidate for the pH Balance Diet
Poor digestion, irritable bowel
Urinary tract problems
Aches and pains especially in the bones and joints
Feeling ‘run down’
WHAT CRITICS OF THE pH BALANCE DIET SAY
Critics of the pH Balance Diet say that, yes, the diet works. But not for the reasons it claims.
It works in that you would probably lose weight and feel more energized. This would be due to an increased intake of fresh fruit and vegetables. This is simply the old and good advice from your mother to eat more vegetables!
However, the concept that you can alter the pH of your blood is simply not true. Neither can you significantly alter the pH of other important body fluids. In fact, if your blood was even slightly acidic you would probably be dead! But you needn’t worry about this as your body efficiently keeps the pH constant. You will never change that by eating certain foods.
The perceived long-term benefits of this diet are purely theoretical as there has never been any direct research that links acid/alkaline residue from the diet with health outcomes.
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