By Martin Rubai
Both acidic and alkaline conditions are vital for the normal functioning of the body. Our bodies are designed to sustain the acid-base balance, otherwise recognized as the PH balance. Generally, the PH balance is the level of acidity and alkalinity in the body; the normal range is usually 7.4. Organs such as the kidney and lungs are designed to maintain this normal PH, and a defect in these organs could lead to medical conditions like acidosis or alkalosis. Excretion of acids through the urine is one of the ways through which the body uses to regulate the blood PH.
Having a balanced body PH has several benefits. It helps to achieve a more elastic and youthful skin, it improves your digestion system, increase your mental sharpness, to mention but a few. One can control the body PH by having a dietary change; for example, you can increase its alkalinity by consuming an alkaline diet. However, it is essential to note that dietary change can only alter the urine PH and not the blood PH.
An altered blood PH can be an indication of a critical health condition that could even lead to death if left untreated. Hence, the urine PH is neither an indication of the body’s PH nor the body’s general health condition.
What are Alkaline Foods?
Having alkaline foods such as green foods and fruits, instead of acid forming foods have proved to increase health conditions and is, especially beneficial to patients with kidney diseases. Recent studies have shown that an alkaline diet is beneficial. Some of these benefits include preventing or halting the spread of cancer as well as cardiac diseases.
Experts also have it that alkalinity aids in weight loss, prevents inflammation, as well as reducing stress. It also aids in slowing down osteoporosis, which is a decrease in bone mass. That is, once the body becomes more acidic, it uses calcium found in the bones to restore the blood’s PH. However, no substantial evidence has been linked to these studies, and hence, more research is being carried out.
The Highs and Lows of Acidity
Acidic conditions are also crucial in the body, and some of the most vital body acids are amino acids. Amino acids are essential in muscle growth as well as in metabolism. There are 20 biologically essential amino acids in the human body, 9 of which are crucial, while the rest are considered unessential. Another group of acids is fatty acids, which also play a vital role in the body’s metabolism. They help in maintaining a healthy brain and aid in blood coagulation. Hydrochloric acid is equally important and helps to kill germs in the stomach. Aside from that, it aids in food digestion by converting the enzyme pepsinogen to pepsin.
When your body is too acidic, this leads to high acidity in your urine, which causes severe medical conditions. Such conditions include; stomach ulcers, developing unhealthy skin, tooth sensitivity, having a constant feeling of fatigue as well as increasing the tendency to acquire infections. It can also cause kidney stones. A diet rich in animal foods and low on greens such as vegetables could be a significant cause of acidosis.
An alkaline diet is considered healthy as it is mostly based on natural and not processed foods. It is, however, vital to note that different parts of the body have varying PH levels, others are more alkaline while others are more acidic — for example, the stomach which is relatively acidic with a PH of about 2 to 3.5.
In conclusion, maintaining the body’s PH is vital to living a healthy life as it can also help prevent severe medical conditions.