An appropriate level of pH is extremely important for every living being on earth, including humans. Most of us may not have ever thought of acid-alkaline balance in our blood as a crucial element for living healthy life. A balanced pH level in our body protects us from diseases and disorders. pH literally means potential of hydrogen. The alkalinity and acidity of any substance is measured in terms of pH. The pH scale is measured between 0 and 14. 0 is considered as most acidic whereas 14 is considered most alkaline.pH 7 is considered to be neutral. To live a healthy life, our body must have optimal pH level of 7.36 which is slightly on alkaline side of neutral. The pH may fluctuate slightly throughout the day; hence it can be said to be within normal range if it is between 6 and 7.5.
It is a challenging task to maintain a slight alkaline pH level in the body mainly because of various metabolic activities that lead to acid formation as well as tendency to eat more acidic foods. Kidney normally maintains electrolyte balance in the body.Thus various minerals and salts such as sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium are in balance. However, when our body becomes more acidic, these salts and minerals run to neutralize excess of acid. In doing so the minerals and salts seep out that are stored in bones, cells and tissue. When this occur body cells and tissue may not function at their optimum. It will lead to suppression of immunity and accumulation of toxic products in the body giving rise to various symptoms. When the level of acidity increases in the body, it gives rise to symptoms such as headache, burning in stomach, retention of water, insomnia, ulcers on tongue, fatigue, low body temperature, dry skin, allergic manifestation etc. On the other end of pendulum, too much alkalinity in blood can lead to coma and death.
Triggers that Cause Acidity
Food and lifestyle both play important role in maintaining balance of pH in body. An increase in acidity can be detrimental to health so let us know the list of triggers that cause acidity in our body.
- Chronic stress
- Alcohol and drugs
- Low fiber diet
- Lack of exercise
- Use of preservatives and artificial colors in food preparations.
- Eating too much of meat, eggs, vinegar, coffee, tea, colas,
- Exposure to radiation and chemicals from household products such as cleaning agents, microwave, cell phones, etc.
- Use of pesticides in agriculture
- Processed foods.
All the above factors can lead to increased acidity in the body producing various symptoms and diseases such as;
- Shortness of breath
- Frequent cough and cold.
- Inflammation in joints
- Muscle cramps after walking a short distance
- Dry and itchy skin
- Cardiac diseases
- Osteoporosis leading to backache
- Alzheimer’s disease
Ways to Maintain Healthy pH Balance
Most of our health problems start due to too much of acidity in our body or in other words the pH level is on the lower side from neutral value of 7. The best way to balance this is to eat more of alkaline forming foods and reduce eating acid forming products. Often simply making altering food habits and lifestyle can improve health. Here are some effective ways to restore pH balance in your diet that will help in proper digestion of food, keep balance of pH in blood and protect kidney and bones from deterioration.
- Eat vegetables and fruits in abundance. Especially eating greens is beneficial because they are loaded with chlorophyll. Chlorophyll helps in building up immunity level and is a good detoxifier. Wheat grass, algae spirullina, sprouted grains and beans, spinach increase alkaline pH.
- Add lemon in your daily food preparations. Contrary to our belief lemon although a citric fruit is an alkalizing agent.
- Avoid refined sugar in every form as possible. Soda, readymade fruit juices contain high level of fructose corn syrup or aspartame which can make the body more acidic.
- Eat raw fruits or drink fresh fruit juice. Lightly steam vegetables as too much of cooking depletes alkalizing minerals from the vegetables.