Proper pH is essential for optimal health and function in the body. Ph is measure from a range of 0 to 14 with 0 being acidic and 14 alkaline. Neutral ph is 7 and our bodies struggle to maintain a slightly alkaline of 7.4. Changes in the balance of either acidic or alkaline interfere with the breakdown and absorption of essential vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Additional side effects are decrease energy of the cells, reduced ability to repair damaged tissues and susceptibility to illness and fatigue. An acidic state in the body allows many diseases to thrive and grow in the environment. Most Americans consume high quantities of processed sugar, white flour and animal proteins in excess creating the ideal acidic environment and diseased state. Examples of acid forming foods are meats, nuts, alcohol, coffee, sweeteners, cheese and sugars to name a few. Vegetables, fruits, spices, lentils, oils, eggs and milk are several alkaline producing foods. Acidity has been linked to cancer, heart disease, diabetes and osteoporosis and many chronic diseases.
The average pH of urine is 6.0 with the ideal range of 7.0 to 7.5. Blood pH is regulated thru urine by the kidneys, adrenals, lungs and gonads with the secretion of hormones and buffering salts. The kidneys ability to filter these salts, give a indication of what the body is eliminating and the current level health of the person. Your cells and organ systems are in a state of constant maintenance of the balance of what you eat and drink every day. Home test ph strips are a effective and reliable way to monitor and check the status of the body.
Athletic performance is directly related to the balance of acidity and alkalinity in human physiology. Many by-products of intense physical exercise, lactic acid, combined with acidic type foods can impact the performance and recovery of the beginner or seasoned athlete. This can be further compounded with the age process and changes in metabolism. Pushing yourself to the “lactate threshold” will increase acid concentration in the body. The bodies inability to flush and neutralize the wastes of intense exercise and carbohydrate metabolism is called the “Muscle Burn”. Nutritionists and Sports scientists have related fatigue and exhaustion to elevated lactic acid levels. Understanding the value of pH in human chemistry and diet will improve your athletic performance, but increase your recovery. Athletic supplements with acid buffering compounds have been shown to increase strength, reduce muscle burn and lactate levels in blood along with increasing recovery time and delay the onset of fatigue in several pilot studies. These Buffering supplements are comprised of potassium hydroxide, magnesium hydroxide and calcium carbonate and can effect and buffer both organic and inorganic acids from diet and exercise. Further studies are necessary to show the validity of acid buffering supplements on performance and the aging process.
Health is about balance and a diet that is primarily 75% alkaline based foods will give your body the ability to maintain optimal health and perform at the best of your athletic ability. Acidosis has a direct impact of the health and the current diseased state of our country. Again, thanks for reading, Dr. Joe