We are often told as Vegans that we can’t get enough Vitamin B, Protein and Calcium.  This is a load of rubbish of course and plant based foods contain all the nutrients we need if we eat a balanced diet.  The subject of Alkaline Vs Acid is a conversation less on the radar but one that everyone needs to consider, whether eating entirely a plant based diet or not.

If you struggle with fatigue, drowsiness, bloating or headaches this may indicate your pH balance is off.  High-protein diets, smoking, alcohol consumption, and certain medications affect your pH balance, causing acidosis. In the long term, this may increase your risk of cancer, gastric ulcers, jaundice, bone loss, and weight gain.

Certain foods can reduce acidity levels and restore your health. However, this doesn’t mean you should avoid acidic foods altogether. Your stomach needs acid to digest food and function properly. The key is to maintain a normal pH balance of about 7 to 7.4.

When your body is too acidic or too alkaline, it becomes more vulnerable to disease and can not function at its peak. This allows pathogens to attack your tissues and natural defence mechanisms. A healthy pH is one that’s slightly alkaline. Ideally, it should be around 7.365. Excess acidity, the most common form of pH imbalance, affects every system in your body. This condition occurs when your pH is 7.35 or lower, and can be life-threatening.

Acidosis can have a variety of causes, from stress and excess exercise to bad eating. Certain health conditions, such as diabetes, promote an acidic environment. Other common risk factors include:

  • Overuse of alcohol
  • Obesity
  • Chronic lung diseases
  • Liver failure
  • Poor nutrition
  • Dehydration
  • High-fat diets
  • High-protein diets
  • Bacterial infections
  • Skipping meals
  • Over-consumption of meat and dairy
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Overtraining
  • Antibiotic overuse
  • Exposure to chemicals and pollutants

Fizzy drinks, sugary treats, processed snacks, spicy foods, refined grains, and caffeinated beverages are among the worst offenders. Caffeine and alcoholic beverages are acidic too, so it’s best to limit or avoid these.

High acidity is a major contributing factor to chronic diseases and impaired immune function. This condition can lead to gastritis, acid reflux, brittle nails, hair loss, hives, loose teeth, mouth ulcers, and recurring infections. You may also feel cold all the time, get sick often, and experience muscle cramps. Fatigue, low energy, and nervousness are common side effects of excess acid in the body.

Over time, acidosis can damage your tissues and organs. Possible complications include diabetes, arthritis, stroke, osteoporosis, heart disease, and fibromyalgia. There may be a link between high acidity and cancer, as cancerous cells thrive in an acidic environment. Excess acidity also affects digestive function, causing GERD, severe bloating, and stomach pain. If left untreated, it may cause tears in the stomach wall and damage the lining of the esophagus.

A lesser known side effect of high acidity is weight gain. This condition affects your body’s ability to use energy, which in turn, slows down your metabolism. Excess acidity can lead to fluid retention, obesity, and difficulty losing weight. Your blood pressure may increase too. An acidic body also tends to age faster and takes longer to recover from injuries, exercise, or disease.

In clinical trials, alkaline minerals have been shown to relieve back pain and enhance vitamin D absorption into the body. Other studies have found that chemotherapy works better when combined with an alkaline diet. This eating plan may benefit bone health, boost cardiovascular function, and improve memory. Health experts recommend a diet consisting of 80 percent alkaline foods and 20 percent acidic foods.   Here’s a list of some of the top alkaline foods:

Almonds are great alkalinizers and a great snack.  Try making almond milk or almond butter and add to home made granola and even stir fries.  They also help lower cholesterol levels, promote weight loss, and support cardiovascular health. Rich in protein, calcium, and iron, these nuts preserve lean mass and keep your bones strong.

Spinach is great alone, raw or cooked quickly in a hot pan for maximum flavour. Or add to a salad or green shake to get some great benefits. The chlorophyll in spinach purifies your blood and has a strong alkalizing effect. It also protects against carcinogens, reduces DNA damage, and boosts immunity. Its anti-inflammatory properties are backed up by science.

Kale is also an excellent source of chlorophyll, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K. It also boasts high antioxidant levels, protecting your cells from oxidative stress. One cup provides over 1327 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin K.   I love it in patties made with potato and roasted, roasted on its own and added to soups, stews and smoothies.

Broccoli not only keeps your body in an alkaline state but also reduces cancer risk and cleanses your system. When consumed regularly, it lowers inflammation and slows down aging. One cup delivers about 135 percent of the daily recommended allowance of vitamin C, offering protection against colds and flu.

Rocket is best known for its detoxifying properties. However, it also has a strong alkalizing effect. Packed with calcium, it strengthens your bones and prevents osteoporosis. Rocket is also high in vitamin A, which supports healthy vision and immune function.

Avocado is a staple ingredient for most vegans.  Squashed into a dip, on toast, as part of a salad or just eaten on its own, this low-sugar fruit fights inflammation and promotes cardiovascular health. Loaded with healthy fats, it raises good cholesterol, reduces bad cholesterol, and alkalizes your body.

Bell Peppers are not only full of flavour, they help reduce excess acidity and prevent oxidative damage to your cells. Rich in flavonoids, carotenoids, and other antioxidants, these veggies protect against chronic diseases and age-related conditions, such as dementia.

Asparagus helps eliminate excess water from your system and lowers inflammation. This alkaline-forming veggie also detoxifies your body and promotes digestive health.

Amaranth is one of the few grains with alkalizing properties. It contains all nine essential amino acids and boasts large amounts of protein. This makes it ideal for vegans and vegetarians. To fight high acidity, swap breakfast cereals, wheat, and oats for this ancient grain. It’s packed with fibre and tastes delicious!

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By |2020-03-18T14:27:07+00:00September 4th, 2019|News|0 Comments

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