PH – Acid/Alkaline
What is pH?
pH stands for potential hydrogen. The degree of concentration of H ions in substance or
When we talk about potential hydrogen, we are referring to a measurement of acidity/alkalinity.
Acids are normal by-products of metabolism. The body has the ability to eliminate these acids.
However, through poor dietary habits, improper breathing, environmental factors, lack of
exercise and other factors, the detoxification routes like the liver and kidneys become
overloaded, start to malfunction and the acids are not eliminated, as they should be. While the
kidneys are over stressed in their attempts to keep up with the increased acid load, the blood is
also stressed attempting to maintain homeostasis with respect to the pH. The body, now unable
to eliminate all of these acids, has to store them for later removal. These are the spaces found
around the cells.
When the body stores a hydrogen molecule (the acid) in the interstitial spaces, it believes that
one-day it will be removed. Therefore in order to maintain homeostasis it knows that for every
molecule of acid that gets stored, an equal molecule of the bicarbonate or base needs to be
placed in the blood because one day it will need to escort the acid out of the body.
(Bicarbonates are alkaline substances, and these include the valuable minerals like calcium,
magnesium and other vital minerals found in the body). This is a how the body maintains the
balance between the blood and the tissues.
As more acid accumulates in the body, it gets stored and pushed into the cell. When this
happens, the first thing it does inside the cell is displace potassium, and then magnesium and
then sodium. These are three of the most critical minerals in the body. The potassium and
magnesium will leave the body, but as a preservation mechanism, the sodium will be kept. The
body knows it must place an alkaline molecule in the blood to escort out this increasing acid
that is being stored in the tissues and cells. What it will often do when the mineral reserves are
low (this is most often the case with the typical diet in the UK and North America) is to draw
calcium - the most alkaline mineral known - from the bones and place it into the blood. (10%
to 40% of the calcium can be removed from the bones before deficiency will show up
on an X-ray!)
If the proper pH level is not kept, we will be unable to efficiently overcome infectious organisms.
Within the human body, our cells live with billions of essential, healthy bacteria that reside in
the mucous membranes, intestines and the blood. Any disturbance may impair our defence
mechanisms throughout the body and lead to illness. An imbalance in the pH of the blood is
similar to a swamp. It creates a toxic environment that supports the growth of fungi, bacteria,
viruses and other micro-organisms.
Blood and pH
The pH balance of the human bloodstream is notably recognised by all of the medical textbooks
as one of the most important biochemical balances in all of human body chemistry. It is as
important as the pH will control the activity of every metabolic function that happens within the
body. It is behind the body's electrical system, intracellular activity, aids in the utilisation of
enzymes, minerals and vitamins. It is the key element to look into when determining what is
wrong with an individual when there is an imbalance found within.
Regulatory mechanisms function to keep the bloods pH ideally at a slightly alkaline level of 7.3
to 7.45 depending on the area whether the arterial, venous or capillary blood. Efficient sensors
in the blood, along with excretory functions of the lungs and kidneys, keep the pH level fairly
constant when the body is functioning normally.
The pH measurement for blood indicates the value of fluids in and around the cells
Blood must remain slightly alkaline at about 7.325
(14 is alkaline, 0 is acid)
Relatively minute changes in blood pH results in death within a short period of time
Higher pH = more resistance
Lower pH = less resistance
Acid pH is hot and fast
Alkaline pH is cool and slow
The biochemical balance (pH) within the body (not just the blood) must be carefully maintained
in order for cellular function and chemical reactions within the body to occur. If the pH falls
outside the narrow levels that are required for functioning, cellular dysfunction can occur,
pathogenic microbes that are found in the blood can change and mutate into pathogenic forms,
creating disease and disorder. Constructive enzymes can become destructive, various organs of
the body can become compromised and the required assimilation of minerals can get thrown off.
If the pH is altered enough, death can ultimately occur.
Diet and pH
Most of the average daily diet is loaded with acid forming foods. These include refined flours
(breads, pasta, pizza, white rice, etc.), pop and carbonated beverages, high meat
consumption, and the list goes on. Add to this that very few people eat enough raw foods to
provide the important enzymes to help support the metabolic process of the body.
Diet plays a major role in the amount of acid produced in your body
Over time, too much acid can result in tissue acidosis, the most common pH problem
Acid ash-producing foods are the most common cause of acidosis. These include denatured
foods, cooked proteins, and processed foods. Excessive glucose feeds mycotic (fungal)
conditions, which produce acids
Acid residues are by-products of these inassimilable foods and need to be eliminated from
Acids from acid ash-producing foods must optimally be buffered with alkaline minerals
(sodium, calcium, magnesium, potassium) before leaving the body
The minerals are then depleted due to acidosis
These lost minerals are easily replaced by eating more fruits and vegetables, especially fresh
However, if the diet does not replenish the alkaline minerals, the body's stores are called
upon. These minerals are drawn away from their crucial functions at the cellular level
Calcium loss then occurs, resulting in bone density loss
Magnesium loss also occurs resulting in higher heartbeat, muscle cramping, and nervous
The sources of alkaline minerals in the body have been stressed and depleted
When the backup stores are very depleted, the kidneys produce ammonia, which has a pH of
9.25 as an emergency measure to neutralise acids.
Over time, this systemic exhaustion leads to disease
Urine and Saliva pH
We excrete acids through the colon, kidney, lungs and skin
We can buffer acids by taking in calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium
We store acids in the tissue, joints, muscles and arteries
Our emergency backup system to control acids is via the liver and bowel where they produce
Healthy urinary changes over 24 hours
- Healthy saliva pH ranges from 6.2-6.8. Average is 6.5 moving to 7.3 after food
- Healthy urine pH fluctuates from between 6.0-7.5 going down through the day
Balancing your pH
Raises pH of saliva & urine
Alfalfa chicken barley red wine
all bran cocoa mayonnaise scallops
almonds coffee melons shrimp
apples collard greens cow's milk spinach
apricots corn miso (any soy squash
artichokes crab products) sugar
asparagus cream cheese mustard greens pistachio nuts
avocados dill pickles olive oil rye
potatoes eggs oranges sardines
baking soda goat milk orange roughly tomatoes
banana green cabbage oysters tuna
barley green onion peas turkey
blueberries beef Perrier water turnips
Brazil nuts ham pizza leafy green tops
home-made bread kidney beans pinto beans with tangelos
broccoli kiwi jalapeno pure vanilla
brussel sprouts lamb plums waxbeans
butter lemons prunes wieners
cauliflower lima beans raspberries zucchini
cheese limes lettuce red cabbage tapioca
told cereals caviar red grapes shell fish
Lowers pH of urine only
trout pears diet Pepsi
cucumbers peaches commercial bread
dried apricots pineapple toasted
cranberries buttermilk hominy
mango beer sunflower seeds
Raises pH of urine only
beef kidney beans apple cider all bran
shrimp squash goat milk olive oil
asparagus blueberries almonds caviar
avocado cheddar cheese home-made bread pizza
baked potato cream cheese (yeast)
Lowers pH of saliva &
bacon persimmons Filberts MSG
radishes pomegranate Wild rice almond rocca
sweet potatoes strawberries Cashews cheezits
yams white grapes Buckwheat mincemeat pie
green olives (stuffed) chocolate Cornflakes soda crackers
mushrooms milkshakes Oats sweet pickles
Apples & seeds evaporated milk Carob walking
figs yoghurt Cream of tartar
grapefruit water Honey
papaya black tea Pure maple syrup
Balance cellular pH above 6.5. This can be accomplished using alkaline forming foods such as, most
fruits, green vegetables, peas, beans, lentils, spices, herbs and seasonings, and seeds and nuts. Cellular
pH can also be raised by limiting add forming foods such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs, grains, and legumes.
Cellular pH correlates with urine pH.
Highly Alkaline Moderately Low Alkaline Forming Very Low Alkaline
Forming Foods: Alkaline Forming Foods: Forming Foods:
Baking soda, sea Spices, kambucha, Most herbs, green tea, Ginger tea, urneboshi
salt, mineral water, unsulfured molasses, mu tea, rice syrup, apple vinegar, ghee, duck
pumpkin seed, soy sauce, cashews, cider vinegar, sake, quail eggs, oats, grain
lentils, seaweed, chestnuts, pepper, eggs, primrose oil, coffee, quinoa,
onion, kohlrabi, sesame seed, cod liver japonica rice,
taro root, sea parsnip, garlic, oil, almonds, sprouts, wild rice, avocado oil,
vegetables, lotus asparagus, kale, potato, bell pepper, most seeds, coconut
root, sweet potato, parsley, endive, mushrooms, oil, olive oil, flax oil,
lime, nectarine, arugula, mustard cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprout, beet,
persimmon, green, ginger root, rutabaga, ginseng, chive,
raspberry, broccoli, grapefruit, eggplant, pumpkin, cilantro, celery, okra,
watermelon, cantaloupe, collard green, lemon, cucumber, turnip
tangerine, and honeydew, citrus, pear, greens squashes,
pineapple. olive, dewberry, avocado, apple, lettuces, orange,
loganberry, and blackberry, cherry, apricot, banana,
mango. peach, and papaya. blueberry, raisin
currant grape, and
Very Low Acid Low Acid Forming Moderately Acid Highly Acid Forming
Forming Foods: Foods: Forming Foods: Foods:
Curry, Koma coffee, Vanilla, alcohol, Nutmeg, coffee, casein, Pudding, jam, jelly,
honey, maple syrup, black tea, balsamic milk protein, cottage pudding, table salt
vinegar, cream, vinegar, cow milk, cheese, soy milk, pork, (NaCI), beer, yeast,
butter, goat/sheep aged cheese, soy veal, bear, mussels, hops, malt, sugar,
cheese, cheese, goat milk, squid, chicken, maize, cocoa, white
chicken, gelatin, game meat, lamb, barley groats, corn, rye, (acetic acid) vinegar,
organs, venison, mutton, boar, elk, oat bran, pistachio processed cheese, ice
fish, wild duck, shell fish, molluscs, seeds, chestnut oil, lard, cream, beef, lobster,
triticale, millet, goose, turkey, pecans, palm kernel oil, pheasant, barley,
kasha, amaranth, buckwheat, wheat, green peas, peanuts, cottonseed oil,
brown spelt, teff, kamut, snow peas, other hazelnuts, walnuts,
rice, pumpkin seed farina, semolina, legumes, carrots, brazil nuts, fried
oil, grape seed oil, white rice, almond garbanzo foods, soybean, and
sunflower oil, pine oil, sesame oil, beans, cranberry, and carob.
nuts, canola oil, safflower oil, pomegranate.
spinach, fava tapioca,
beans, black-eyed seitan, tofu, pinto
peas, string beans, beans, white beans,
wax beans, zucchini, navy beans, red
chutney, rhubarb, beans, aduki beans,
coconut,guava, dry lima beans,
fruit, figs, and chard, plum, prune
dates. and tomatoes.
This list shown above is designed to cover a wide variety of diets. It is not a list that we personally
Factors which contribute to acid formation in the body
Along with ash-producing food, cellular activity and exercise produce physiologic acid, which is
much simpler to eliminate than acids produced by a diet high in acid ash foods. The body
eliminates physiologic acid through the lungs as you breathe. Unlike ash-producing foods that
leave acid residues in the body, there are foods that are acid when they enter the body. The
body does not need to buffer natural acids from fruits and vegetables because these foods
generally leave an alkaline ash in the body. The same is true for herbs. Your body can eliminate
these natural acids just as easily as it can physiologic acid.
Ingestion of acids (processed, packaged and refined foods, animal protein, white sugar, white
rice, white flours, carbonated beverages, etc.)
Shallow breathing decreases the body's ability to eliminate excess carbon dioxide (this is acid
forming) through normal respiratory functions.
Ingestion of the wrong types of dietary fat causes an incomplete metabolism of fats.
Supplementation of essential fatty acids should be consumed on a daily basis.
Inability of the kidneys to excrete the normal daily acid load. Dehydration will play a factor in
this. Be sure to consume adequate amounts of water.
Drugs and diarrhoea can contribute to the loss of HCO3 (bicarbonate, alkaline substances).
Liver damage of injury (from alcohol consumption, toxicity, etc.) which could lead to
diminished functioning of the urea cycle.
Stress has been proven that stress will increase the sympathetic nervous system response
(fight or flight syndrome and emotions such as anger, fear, etc.) and therefore creates elevated
concentration of acids.
Excessive physical training can lead to the build-up of lactic acid.
Guidelines for Alkalizing the Body and Reducing Excess Acid
Reduce or eliminate the amount of acids consumed each day. Concentrate on a diet
containing a high concentration of alkaline foods and the avoidance of large quantities of
protein. Avoid animal protein. Consume fish such as salmon and mackerel for their high
essential fatty acid content. THINK GREEN! Green plant food including vegetables and salad
Increase the kidneys ability to drain acids through dry skin brushing, drainage formulas (seek
a qualified natural health professional such as a naturopath or homeopath), consume at least 8-
10 glasses of water each day and avoid toxins that would impair kidney function.
Increase the lungs' capacity to remove any excess carbon dioxide. Practice proper deep
breathing techniques until it becomes a habit.
Increase the lymphatic system by using appropriate methods including rebounding, message
techniques, dry skin brushing, hot and cold showers, etc.
Clean and detoxify the liver to assist overall detoxification.
Utilise supplementation as recommended. Greens products and trace minerals are an
excellent way to help re-alkalize the body.
Use freshly squeezed lemon or lime in your water daily. Do not use any other substitute.
Prepare lemon and water fresh, as needed.
Consume large amounts of fresh green vegetables daily. Almonds and avocados are great
Bi-annually, cleanse the entire body with a gentle colon cleanse.
Supplement with essential fatty acids that have a balance of omega 3, omega 6 and omega 9