You've probably seen the headlines: "Alkaline Foods: Healthy Eating for a Healthy Body"
You may have even read the article: "Nutrition experts agree - our diets are causing our pH levels to be too acid. We need to eat more alkaline-rich foods like dark leafy greens and drink more water to balance our pH levels to be our healthiest."
Of course, I would hope that by now, you’ve learned to view these articles with a lot of skepticism.
Repeat after me: "There is NO SINGLE DIET ADVICE that applies to everyone!"
So what's all the fuss about alkaline foods? Why are some so-called "experts" trying to get you to drown yourself with water and stuff yourself with greens?
Well, let's start with the basics. What do we mean by pH? Chemically, pH is a measure of the concentration of hydrogen ions in a solution. Normally, pH is expressed as a number from 0 to 14. A pH of 7.0 - right in the middle of the scale - is considered a "neutral" pH. Below 7.0 is considered "acid", while above 7.0 is considered "alkaline"
The fluids in our body - saliva, urine, etc. - all have a certain pH level of hydrogen ions. These hydrogen ions are by-products of metabolism and other chemical reactions in the body. For the most part, these reactions create acid in the body, and this acid must be processed and eliminated for us to maintain our health.
So there is no doubt that a more "alkaline" level in our body fluids indicate that we are properly "handling" the acid by-products. An alkaline level is a good indication of health.
BUT ... BUT ...BUT ...BUT ...
Eating alkaline foods or drinking water to change our pH is no assurance that we are getting the health benefits of an alkaline body pH.
Because each of us have unique Fundamental Homeostatic Control (FHC) Systems - the systems that determine how we process our foods - each of us will have a different chemical reaction to certain foods. In other words, the foods that will help "alkalinize" one person, may have just the opposite effect on another person.
It all comes down to your genetically-inherited metabolic type. And to make matters even worse, some of us have a genetic tendency to be alkaline, so alkalinizing foods will cause these people sickness and disease!
As just one example, let's take red meat. You'll hear red meat produces an acid pH. However, for some FHC types such as Fast Oxidizers (that is, people whose primary metabolic type is related to the food oxidizing system), red meat actually creates an alkalinizing effect to balance the pH in these people! So for this type, this supposedly "acid" food actually helps create the proper pH balance, due to the action of their oxidizing system.
As another example, let's take those dark leafy greens that everyone thinks is "healthy", like kale, swiss chard, mustard greens, and collard greens. For those Fast Oxidizers we just mentioned, these greens will actually create an "acid" effect when consumed. Given the Fast Oxidizers genetic tendency to be acidic, these foods are exactly the wrong ones to eat!
And the same holds true for taking vitamins, minerals, and supplements. For example, we know that certain minerals create a beneficial "alkaline" shift in some FHC types, while they create an "acid" shift in others. So whether taking these minerals is healthy for you - or whether it will increase your chances of sickness and illness - depends not on the minerals, but on your body's chemistry.
So once again, repeat after me: "There is NO SINGLE DIET ADVICE that applies to everyone!"
Before you start drinking lots of water and eat greens to affect your pH level, find out your FHC settings! Learn how the foods affect you before you try to "eat healthy" based on the fad diet of the day. Learn which supplements and vitamins are right for you.
A custom Metabolic profile that tells you your FHC settings is the only absolutely certain way to know which foods will have you feeling your best and will help you to become young again!
Carole Taylor is a Certified Metabolic Typing Advisor and a Certified Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Advisor.
Want to discover how to improve your health, control weight, and feel great with Nutritional Secrets That fit your REAL metabolic type and lifestyle? In Carole’s Free Online Video, you'll learn how to find your REAL Metabolic Type to look and feel healthy starting today! Just visit YoungAfter50.Com to get your free video.