How to Maintain the Body’s pH Level

Many people get quite confused when referring to pH levels and the body. A lot of people definitely hear the term pH at least once in their lifetime, but a lot of the time it tends to deal with scientific stuff like the pH levels of this solution or the pH levels of this specific fruit. It is talked about somewhat in certain classes like Chemistry, but for sure pH is never really talked about when in relation to the human body. Many people actually don’t understand the relationship between pH levels in the human body and their own health and that can actually be quite a disservice to the person. pH levels can be a great way to gage what is happening internally in your body and can help your understanding of exactly how balanced your body is. If you are confused in regards to what exactly I am talking about then that is completely fine! This article will aim to go over what pH is, how it relates to the human body, its importance, and what you can do to ensure the proper balance in pH levels.

What is pH?

pH Level

pH is basically a logarithmic scale that is designed to measure and tell you exactly how acidic or how alkaline a solution is. It does this by measuring the hydrogen ion concentration within the solution to compute a result. pH levels fall on a scale of 1-14. The numbers 1-6 are used to define solutions that are alkaline or basic while the numbers 8-14 are designed to identify solutions that are highly acidic in concentration. The higher the number is, the more acidic it is and the lower the number is, the more alkaline it is. A pH level of 7 is considered to be balanced, meaning the solution is not alkaline or acidic.

pH and the Human Body
The human body also has pH as well. The level of pH that our body is at is determined by the kinds of foods we eat. All sorts of food have certain pH levels that will end up affecting the pH levels within our own body. This can be both good and bad. The aim with our health and our pH levels is that we always maintain a balance. By maintaining a good balance, we can help our body function in a very optimal state, allowing for many various processes to take place without any issues. It is ideal that we eat in a way that helps us maintain a neutral pH level rather than a pH level that is too acidic or too alkaline. Both sides of these extremes would produce various health consequences that would take a serious toll on us. It could make you more prone to illnesses that could be very severe and debilitating. This is why it is so beyond important that we recognize and understand the role of pH levels within our body and take the necessary steps to measure and control our pH levels, in order to ensure the best results for ourselves.

The Effects of pH Levels that are Too Acidic
So, one side of the horrible extreme of pH levels is having pH levels that are way too acidic for our body. We ideally want to stick to a pH level of about 7.4 in pH level readings. If your body’s pH level is at a reading that is way below 7 then this is a sign that your body is in a very acidic state. When your body reaches a very acidic state, the correct medical term would be acidosis. This means that your kidneys and lungs are unable to keep your body’s pH in balance and this causes a many process within your body to produce high amounts of acid. Metabolic acidosis can cause a myriad of horrible symptoms such as rapid and shallow breathing, an increased heart rate, an appetite that is lacking, fatigue, headaches, jaundice, confusion, sleepiness, headaches, and more. If you actually fail to detect and quickly solve your acidosis then you can actually experience more life-threatening and serious health problems such as kidney stones, a delayed growth, kidney failure, chronic kidney problems, bone disease, delayed growth, and sometimes even shock or death. Overall these symptoms signal a major problem with your body that needs to be remedied quickly and if you feel as if you may be suffering from acidosis here is what you need to do!

How to Reduce Risk of Acidosis and Solve the Problem!
There are many things that can be done to bring your pH levels up to a very healthy balance. This includes ingesting things like oral sodium bicarbonate, sodium citrate, bicarbonate supplements, IV fluids, oxygen, or antibiotics (keep in mind these are in serious conditions and should only be given by a medical professional). If your acidosis is not in a severe situation rather a state that is slightly below the ideal pH level then you can solve the situation at home by eating or drinking foods that are basic or alkaline in nature. The best thing about this is the fact that naturally a lot of foods that are alkaline or basic are also incredibly healthy for you. So, you really do not need to worry about compromising your diet in any way. It is incredibly easy to incorporate healthy, alkaline based foods in your diet in an effort to reduce the acidity within your body.

Some Alkaline based beverages that are worth trying include things like coconut water or green tea. Green tea is an amazing caffeine substitute to coffee. It is best to avoid coffee if you are trying to increase your pH levels. Dairy products are also another drink that are incredibly acidic as well so try to cut out some heavy dairy from your diet and replace milk with milk substitutes like almond milk. If you tend to have sweet cravings for coffee, milkshakes, chocolate milk, etc. then you can try to incorporate delicious green smoothies or drinks in your diet. You can throw in an array of delicious green vegetables that will greatly help in increasing your alkaline levels. Green juices made from green vegetables such as kale, spinach, or green drink powders are all such great options that you can consider. You can even make something as simple as water more alkaline! Do this by squeezing in some fresh lemon juice or mixing in ½ teaspoon of baking soda with 1 gallon of distilled water. Mix it up, shake it up, and drink away!

Fruits and Vegetables
Look for dark, green, leafy veggies to incorporate into your diet when trying to balance your pH levels out. This includes vegetables such as kale, spinach, and broccoli. The best part about incorporating vegetables like this, is that they are not only alkaline in nature, but they are packed with so much nutrition. Honestly, they are the best foods to be eating on a daily basis for your overall health. Some other yummy vegetables to consider include beets, carrots, cucumbers, green beans, zucchini, etc. You can even try to juice your green juice if you are someone who prefers to drink their veggies rather than eat them! Try throwing in some wheatgrass or carrot juice, for a green juice that is both sweet, satisfying, and incredibly alkaline! Fruit is another great option to consider if you are attempting to increase your pH levels because fruit is naturally sweet as well and can really help curb those sugar cravings. It is so important to avoid sugar or sweeteners in this case, because they are loaded with a bunch of acidic ingredients that are very toxic for you. Try satiating your sweet tooth with delicious fruits like banana, fresh coconut, figs, sour cherries, rhubarb, pomegranates, avocados, tomatoes, and even lemon and limes! Although, lemon and limes are incredibly acidic, they actually become alkaline producing once they are in your body so don’t completely cut those choices out of your diet!

Other Foods to Consider
Some other great choices to consider besides an array of fruit and vegetables include tofu. Tofu is an amazing replacement for acidic based meats such as pork, chicken, and beef. Try cooking some veggies and mixing them in grains like millet, quinoa, lentils, etc. These are the ultimate alkaline rich meals. Keep some olive oil, grapeseed oil, and coconut oil in handy as well! They can help spice up your meals and keep you on the alkaline track so that you can kick that acidosis to the curb!

The Effects of pH Levels that are Too Alkaline
Just like when the body has too much acid and starts producing serious health concerns, the opposite can also be true when the body has too much alkaline in its system. Too much alkaline is coined the term alkalosis and can be just as damaging to your health as acidosis can be. Alkalosis is characterized by having a pH that is quite above the recommended 7.4 pH level. The symptoms that can be experienced when one has alkalosis includes hand tremors, nausea, prolonged muscle spasms, vomiting, lightheadedness, numbness in various parts of the body, confusion, muscle twitching and more! When alkalosis is not treated immediately or properly then the symptoms can progress into even more severe health concerns in which one can end up dealing with heart arrhythmias in which the heart beats too fast, slow or irregularly, comas, or electrolyte imbalances. You can even experience loss of consciousness, seizures, and overall immense difficulty with breathing.

How to Reduce Risk of Alkalosis!
In very severe cases of Alkalosis, the doctor will have to decide the most appropriate course of action. Sometimes they will offer chloride or potassium tablets to correct this chemical imbalance. In other cases, further investigation of the situation may prompt a different approach to treating the problem. If your alkalosis is very severe, then it is best that you have a medical professional deal with the problem instead. In cases in which your alkalosis is only a tad bit over the recommended pH level and your symptoms are quite moderate, then it is safe for you to attempt to remedy the problem yourself at home! Be careful though to not go crazy with the amount of acid you consume, this can also be incredibly bad! Incorporate some foods here and there, and measure yourself consistently to ensure the safest results.

Some beverages to consider when trying to bring down your pH levels include dairy drinks like coffee and milk. Orange juice produces a pH level of about 3.70 so maybe having a glass of orange juice in the morning can kickstart your day and diet right! Try making your own homemade orange juice so you know that you are drinking healthily. You can also choose from an array of other juices like Welch’s Concord Grape juice, apple juice, white cranberry peach juice, etc. A glass of wine may also help with correcting your high pH level so you can consider that amongst your options!

Fruits and Vegetables
There are vast options to consider in terms of fruits and vegetables that you can consume in order to bring your pH level down. A good majority of fruits actually happen to be quite acidic, so if you love fruit then it will surely be easy to incorporate these in your diet! Some fruits that you can consider include apples, all types of berries such as blackberries, cranberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, as well as other fruits like peaches and pears. You can try to cut some fruit up to enjoy in the morning with a glass of water. Vegetables may be a tad bit harder to incorporate in your diet, if you are looking to decrease the alkalinity in the body. A good portion of vegetables are alkaline in nature so there aren’t many options to consider, but some vegetables that you can keep in mind include cabbage, collard greens, beets, corn, mushrooms, etc. You can have these on the side with any dish of your choice. Possibly cook them up in an omelet or toss a few on your salad!

Other Foods
Rice and wheat are probably the main foods that have a higher acidity. Corn and corn tortilla are also other options that you can consider. Some hard and processed cheeses can also be put into the list of foods that are acidic, so maybe cutting up a few pieces of cheese can be okay for you (although I wouldn’t overdo it on the cheese too much!). Mayonnaise, soy sauce, and vinegar are other options to consider. Honey is another one as well. You can put some honey in a good cup of tea or drizzle over oatmeal, cream of wheat, etc. Overall, you definitely have some good options to consider when decreasing the alkalinity within your body, so work to find the right fit for you!

Measure your pH levels and use this article to plan out a diet you can enjoy that will maintain your body, offsetting the negative effects of a pH imbalance while also reaping the other nutritional benefits that these foods can provide!

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