Acidic and Alkaline Forming Food
When is come to which type of food is acidic or alkaline, it is not quite what people may think. You think acid, and you think of vinegar or orange juice or soda pop. However what matters is not the acidity or alkalinity of the food or beverages we may put in our mouth, but what happens to their components after ingestion and metabolism. After ingestion and metabolism the food we take become acid-forming or alkaline-forming.
When it comes to improving your bone health, improving your acid-alkaline balance with alkaline-forming foods is one of the most important factors. Even if you exercise, if your diet is heavily tilted toward acid-forming foods, you may still have unnecessary bone loss in the long run.
Foods with a lot of protein are acid forming because proteins contain Sulphur and the Sulphur eventually is converted in the body to Sulphuric acid. Eggs, fish, meat and poultry are therefore acidic foods. Breads and cereals are also metabolized to acids, but surprisingly, citrus foods are not acid producing. That’s because citric acid is broken down in the body to non-acidic substances. Most fruits and vegetables yield an alkaline residue in the body.
Acidity Increases Risk Of Osteoporosis
Unfortunately, we’ve strayed from the acid-alkaline balanced diet that our ancestors achieved. We favor meat, sugars, grains, low-mineral processed foods, and other acid-forming foods, while consuming far too few alkaline-forming vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and other foods beneficial for bone. The net result is that our eating patterns create a condition known as “chronic low-grade metabolic acidosis.”
While our bodies can easily handle an occasional acid load, long-term acid build-up can exhaust our available alkalizing reserves. Unless we take steps to neutralize these acids, they can damage our health in many ways — and this is the underlying cause of many of our modern health problems, including osteoporosis.
A proper acid-base balance is critical to health and it is well established that the body requires that the fluid surrounding cells be maintained at a pH between 7.35 and 7.45. pH of course is just a measure of acidity. The lower the number the more acidic the solution. Now, if a food with an acid residue is consumed, the body will take steps to ensure that extracellular fluid pH doesn’t drop below 7.35. The extra acid may be excreted by the kidneys, exhaling carbon dioxide also raises pH, or bones may release alkaline calcium salts to neutralize the excess acid.
Bone is dynamic, some is always being formed by osteoblasts, and some broken down by osteoclasts. Unfortunately increased acidity enhances the activity of osteoclasts, increasing the risk of osteoporosis. Now, if the diet does not lead to an acid residue, there is no need for the bones to release calcium. So an increase in fruits and vegetables, with their alkaline residue, is great for bone structure.
The Acidosis Cycle
Alkaline-Forming Food For Bone Health
“Eating alkaline” simply means selecting foods which are alkaline-forming and they provide minerals and nutrients that neutralize acids produced in the body. For the most part, such nutrients are found in plant foods — leafy greens, fruits, root crops, and many others.
An alkaline diet also means limiting your intake of foods that tend to make body tissues more acidic — which includes meat, grains, dairy, and sugary or processed foods. This doesn’t have to mean eliminating such foods — you can still include them in your diet if you like as these foods might provide vital nutrients, like the B12 vitamins in meat – so complete elimination might prove counterproductive.
To truly eat alkaline, you need to make such acid-forming foods a fairly small part of your diet. A good rule of thumb is that if your diet is 80% whole, fresh fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, and root crops, and 20% meat, grain, dairy, and so forth, then you’ve got an alkaline diet.
One of the key factors which contributes to alkaline-forming is Chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is an alkaline substance that strengthens your resistance to demineralization which is caused by excessive acidity. It can aid in finding a proper PH balance within the body when used in conjunction with a healthy diet.