Your Diet and pH Balance . . .
The Difference pH Makes
By Christine Dreher, Author of “The Cleanse Cookbook”
The evolution of our modern day lifestyle continues to bring more challenges to our health and well-being. Most of our diets include so many refined, processed foods and sugar, not to mention the chemical pollutants in the air we breathe and the food we eat. I believe these factors and excessive stress, are the main reasons the occurrence of disease continues to escalate.”
The Evolution of Disease
Disease is our body’s way of telling us something is out of balance. It is a cry for help. I believe our bodies are capable of healing themselves when given the right tools, care and attention. The problem in our society is that we tend to address the symptoms of the imbalances, instead of the causes. An example would be the overworked, stressed-out manager, plagued with afternoon fatigue, who rushes off for the “sugar fix” of a candy bar or coffee to keep going. This is like putting a Band-Aid on a volcano. It may create a short-term remedy, but in the long run it makes matters worse. What started off as a small annoying symptom tends to escalate over time, requiring more drastic Band-Aids to quiet (or suppress) the uncomfortable symptom. Eventually a small, annoying symptom can grow to become a chronic problem or disease. What Causes These Imbalances? One of the major causes of an imbalanced system is the food in our pantries and refrigerators. The amount of processed and refined foods we consume has continued to increase over the last several decades, including foods treated with preservatives, chemicals, pesticides and hormones. Not only are the chemicals creating havoc and toxicity in our systems, but the continual consumption of the processed and refined foods are also throwing off the delicate pH balance of our bodies.
What Is the pH Balance of the Body?
The pH level is one of the most important balance systems of the body. The pH level is a measure of acidity or alkalinity, on a scale of zero to fourteen, with zero being most acid, fourteen being most alkaline and seven being mid-range. You may have seen shampoos advertised as pH balanced. These are shampoos designed to match the pH level of the hair. The pH levels of our body vary from one organ or system to the next. For example, the stomach pH is much more acid than the intestinal pH because the stomach needs an acid environment (hydrochloric acid) to break down food for digestion. Whereas, the flora (good bacteria) of the small intestine need a more alkaline environment to assimilate and process the nutrients from the foods digested by the stomach.
How Does Eating Affect Our pH Level?
In my book, “The Cleanse Cookbook,” I write about the importance of maintaining a balanced pH level. In order to do this, I recommend eating at least 75% alkaline-forming foods. The average standard American diet consists of about 80% acid-forming foods! Because processed and refined foods are extremely acidic to our systems, the body creates a buffering system (a chemical process to protect the body from being harmed by the acids). This buffering process requires the use of many nutrients from the body, including electrolyte minerals (organic potassium, magnesium, sodium, calcium, to name a few). Electrolyte minerals are not minerals from the ground; they are live minerals from plant sources that have gone through the process of photosynthesis.
Importance of Electrolyte Minerals
Electrolyte minerals are vital to the metabolic functions of our body systems. When we have a sufficient reserve of electrolyte minerals, the buffering process (the cushioning and removing of unwanted acids from our systems) is not a problem. When we are young, we usually have sufficient reserves. Over time, the electrolyte mineral reserves can become depleted by ingesting too many processed and refined acid-forming foods, or from excessive mental or emotional stress. When we run short of electrolyte minerals, our body is no longer able to maintain an efficient homeostasis or balance.
The body has a hierarchy of priorities for survival. Second only to breathing and sustaining our heartbeat, the most important metabolic function that our bodies perform is maintaining a specific blood pH. The pH level of the blood is the most important pH level the body must regulate. The body’s blood pH level must be maintained at 7.4 (slightly alkaline). If it varies more than a point, death can result from a coma or a seizure.
In order to maintain the blood’s critical pH balance, the body will compromise less important functions. Once the electrolyte reserves become depleted, the body begins to rob these electrolytes from the various organs and systems of the body to maintain the blood’s pH level. This is where the imbalance begins. The following are examples of altered pH levels and the resulting imbalanced internal body system: If the bowels and intestines are robbed of electrolyte minerals, the pH level becomes altered. This creates an imbalance in the bacterial environment, which can leave the bowels and intestines open to pathogens (including candida and parasites), irritations and disturbances. Have you ever heard of irritable bowel syndrome or leaky gut syndrome? Another example of an altered pH level is when the stomach becomes depleted of organic sodium (an essential electrolyte mineral, not table salt), the body may not be able to manufacture enough hydrochloric acid in the stomach. This can create an imbalanced digestive system, where foods are not being digested properly.
These imbalances can be aggravated further because our body systems will generally deplete electrolytes from the weakest areas first. So if someone already has a weakened body system, the further depletion of electrolyte minerals will cause a greater imbalance and more dysfunction. When our bodies become too depleted, overall functioning becomes weakened, affecting the immune system and the body’s ability to fight off bacterial and viral infections.
The Good News
We can begin to reverse this depletion process by replenishing the electrolyte minerals in our bodies. By eating more pH-alkaline forming foods (fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, fresh juices, sprouted seeds, alkaline, whole grains), we can begin to replenish our reserve supply of electrolyte minerals.
pH Testing Tools
In “The Cleanse Cookbook,” I introduce an amazing self-diagnostic tool to measure our pH levels; it is called pH papers. pH papers are yellow colored papers that come on a roll or in strips that you may have seen in your high school or college chemistry classes. You can use them to measure the saliva and urine pH levels of your body. Three of these tests are explained in my book. They measure not only your pH levels, but can determine if you are deficient in electrolyte minerals.
The pH papers are a helpful tool to monitor our pH balance system. pH testing also provides us with a way to take a more proactive role in our health. We can detect and correct the pH imbalances and electrolyte deficiencies in our systems before they manifest as symptoms of disease. As an internal body cleansing coach, I have seen dramatic health improvements in so many people who simply get their pH levels balanced and their electrolytes replenished. The pH tests are easy and quick. All you need are pH papers and the instructions for interpreting your results.
If you are interested in more information about the internal pH system or internal body cleansing, I recommend reading not only “The Cleanse Cookbook,” but also “Cleanse & Purify Thyself,” written by Dr. Rich Anderson (also available through me or at your local health food store). Both books are great resources for understanding the pH balance of our bodies and the importance of internal body cleansing.
For more information contact: Christine Dreher, Christine’s Cleanse Corner, P.O. Box 421423, San Diego, CA 92142 (858) 673-0224. Web: www.TransformYourLife.com or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Christine Dreher is the author of the nationwide health store best-seller “The Cleanse Cookbook.” She is the owner of Christine’s Cleanse Corner (a company created to help people cleanse and rebuild their bodies), an internal-body-cleansing-coach, nutritional counselor, lecturer, teacher, personal growth seminar leader and fitness instructor.
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