Eating an alkaline diet is important because our blood pH level needs to stay between 7.35 and 7.45, which is slightly alkaline. It takes work for our bodies to stay balanced within this small window, and the more acidic our diet, the more we work against our body’s efforts. In turn, we leave ourselves feeling tired, and our immune systems vulnerable to disease.
Alkaline diet helps balance blood pH level
Blood pH is simply a measure of how acidic or alkaline the blood is. For context, stomach acid has a pH close to 0 (the most acidic), and bleach is close to 14 (the most alkaline). Pure distilled water sits squarely in the middle at a neutral 7.
Our bodies require a blood pH level that is just slightly more alkaline than pure distilled water: between 7.35 and 7.45. We help our bodies to stay within this level by eating a more alkaline diet with fewer acidic foods.
Alkaline diet is not SAD
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is extremely off-balanced and contains significantly more acidic foods than alkaline foods. This puts constant stress on the body and the immune system to bring the blood pH back into balance.
Eating an alkaline diet helps the blood pH level to stay in balance without as much effort. This does not mean we should eliminate acidic foods from our diet altogether; it simply means we need to shift the balance from the typically acidic diet to a more alkaline diet.
A good rule of thumb is that 60-80% of our diet should be from more alkaline foods, and 20-40% more acidic foods.
What are alkaline foods?
How alkaline or acidic the food is before you eat it does not always determine the pH effect it will have on your body after you digest it. Knowing what foods are alkaline can help you to eat healthier and feel better.
You may also find it helpful to post a few food charts on the refrigerator to take with you to the market.
- This alkaline food chart contains a list of alkaline foods, grouped from high alkaline to low alkaline. Below it is a list of high acid foods to low acid foods.
- A separate alkaline food chart contains a list of alkaline and acidic foods, grouped by food type (fruits, vegetables, etc.). It does not give the degree of acidity or alkalinity, but if you are looking for a particular food, you may find it more quickly on this list.