Our bodies are constantly striving for homeostasis (balance). One of these factors constantly being balanced is the acidity/alkalinity of our bodies. Too acid or too alkaline can cause problems. The acid scale goes from 0 (pure acid) to 14 (pure base/alkaline). 7 is neutral. Our bodies should be around 7.3-7.4, just slightly alkaline.
Acidity in our body can be from stress, poor diet, dehydration, poor detoxification, etc. The main foods that lead to a more acid environment are: meats, processed dairy, grains, alcohol and refined carbohydrates and sugars. Alkaline foods tend to be vegetables (particularly dark leafy greens) and some fruits.
With acidity comes inflammation. Inflammation is something our body does not want and leads to disease. ALL diseases have an element of inflammation to them.
Our body is amazing that it works very hard to maintain this balance. The kidneys excrete more or less urine, we breathe faster or slower, we get calcium pulled from our bones and teeth to buffer… Some minerals are great buffers, meaning they change the pH of an environment very quickly. Lemon juice which is highly acidic has the pH changed very quickly when we add bicarbonate soda which is very alkaline. That is called a buffer. How this relates to our health? If we are in a state of acidity, our body will conveniently pull calcium from our bones and place it into our blood to change the pH. Thumbs up for our body being AMAZING! Only problem is, if we are regularly acidic, our bones become weaker as more calcium is pulled out and not replaced. We develop spurs, kidney stones, gall stones, calcium deposits, hardened and loss of elasticity of our connective tissue, lots of calcium in the wrong spots.
Although it isn’t good to be high alkaline either, due to our highly processed diets and stressful lives we lead, we tend more towards the acidic state.
As always moderation is the key, but if you get rid of all the processed and refined foods and eat real food that looks the way it grows in nature, you’re off to a great start.