By Melissa Crispell, CNS, CNHP, CWC
Maintaining a body that's alkaline balanced is key to preventing disease.
Our bodies are complex organisms not a collection of separate parts. There are multiple systems in your body that work together to help keep a proper pH balance.
We can measure acidity (or alkalinity) using pH. The pH scale runs from 0-14 with 0 being the most acidic, 14 being the most alkaline and 7 being absolute neutral. We want to aim for a reading within 6.5-7.5. If your body’s pH is too far off the mark it becomes difficult for the systems to work properly.
In short, your pH is an indicator of your overall health and gives important clues as to what is going on in your body. Think of your swimming pool. You must balance the pool water: too acidic and it will burn your eyes; too alkaline and it becomes cloudy.
Food influencing your body’s pH is not a new concept! Doctors in the early 1900’s studied the pH-altering effects of different foods. They found that most foods were either “alkaline or acid producing” only few foods were “neutral” in their effects. They also discovered that changing the diet could change the body’s pH. It was not surprising that bringing the body’s pH into a better alkaline range helped people get rid of their health complaints.
Are you too acidic?
There are two ways to know if you’re too acidic. You can rely on multiple-occuring symptoms or you can do a simple at-home test.
Signs of being too acidic can be:
- Constant fatigue
- Easily running out of breath
- Muscle pain or cramping
- Feeling like you can’t get enough air
Being too acidic has even been linked to cancer formation, heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis.
Can you hold your breath for more than 20 seconds? How long you can hold your breath is one way to mark the difference once you’ve adopted a more alkaline way of living.
At-home test for acidity (or alkalinity)
A urine pH test can tell you how acidic (or alkaline) your body is. Check your 1st morning's urine as this is the truest read of our pH level. We’re looking at the urine reading not the saliva. Your mouth has it’s own environment just like your stomach has it’s own. We want to get the reading that tells us about our whole body not just one area.
Measuring your pH is a very simple test you can actually do by yourself in the comfort of your own home. You simply dip the pH strip in the urine stream (first morning urine only) and match up the colors to the chart in your kit.
How do I balance my pH?
Supplementing with magnesium and choline citrate, as well as mindfulness practices and relaxation techniques can help balance your pH. But nothing can replace an alkaline diet. Eating a diet with 80% alkaline foods and 20% acidic foods (if you have health concerns) or 60%/40% for healthy maintenance.
Keep track of your pH a few times a week for (2) two weeks. Make the adjustments to your food based on the acid – alkaline chart along the way and feel the difference!
92% of our overall health comes from our choices not by chance – make good ones!
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Melissa Crispell is a clinical nutrition specialist and certified wellness coach and the owner of Long-Term Wellness. A results-proven coach, Melissa turns your body goals into a reality. Stop suffering from skin issues and food baby-belly bloating! Melissa will help you identify health goals, learn new habits, and help you live the healthy lifestyle you're looking for…you can grow your own way, one step at a time. One-on-One and group coaching sessions available. For daily health tips, follow Melissa on her FACEBOOK page.