The alkaline diet, also known as the alkaline acid diet or alkaline ash diet is a type of diet plan that has become very popular among the Hollywood celebrities and the like, ever since Victoria Beckham tweeted about it in 2013. This diet plan that focuses on maintaining the most favorable pH value in the body is believed to aid in weight loss as well as in preventing a whole lot of serious diseases, including cancer. The consumption of certain kinds of foods, like wheat, refined sugar, processed foods and meat may lead to the production of too much acid by the body, which of course is not good for your health. Eating foods that are alkaline on the other hand is considered to help in maintaining your blood pH level.
It is very important that the pH level of the blood must be balanced at a slightly alkaline level in order for the human body to survive. It is a fact that the diet of majority of the people comprises of mostly acid-forming foods like refined grains, processed sugars etc. This together with an unhealthy lifestyle leads to many serious and deadly diseases. Too much of acid forming foods can have a negative impact on your health. When your body does not receive the essential nutrients required for it to maintain the pH balance, it will start using its stores such as the tissues and bones, leading to weakness and illness. So the solution is to lead a healthy lifestyle and to eat food that helps to maintain a stable pH balance.
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What is an alkaline diet?
Alkaline diet is a diet that emphasizes on eating foods like fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, roots, tubers, and legumes that help in maintaining optimal body pH, while at the same time restricting the intake of acid-forming foods such as meat , dairy, processed foods, fried foods, caffeine, and alcohol. The basic idea behind this type of diet is to eat foods that maintain your blood pH instead of eating foods that put a stress on your body to alter the blood pH in order to bring it to a correct balance. Alkaline foods are considered to be helpful in bringing the blood pH to a balanced level that promotes healthy living. These foods may also help in neutralizing the excess amounts of acid in your body that can eventually lead to inflammation and other serious conditions.
Health benefits of an alkaline diet
As said earlier, too much of acid levels in the body can lead to chronic health problems such as fatigue, inflammation, being vulnerable to diseases, gum and teeth problems, and premature aging. Not only can an alkaline diet help prevent these problems, but several health benefits are also associated with eating such a diet. Read on to find out how an alkaline diet can be helpful to your health:
Alkaline diet is an anti-ageing diet
Health experts claim that the best way to reverse your age is to change your diet. The cells in your body function at their best when they are in a slightly alkaline environment. Acidification is considered to be one of the many factors that can speed up the process of ageing. Our body tries to neutralize the excess acid by pulling alkaline minerals like calcium and magnesium from bones, thus weakening them and leading to conditions like osteoporosis. Likewise iodine is utilized from the soft tissues in your body, which affects the thyroid, leading to a series of problems including fatigue, depression, weight gain and diabetes. It is possible to reverse acidity by eating an alkaline diet and limiting the intake of acid-forming foods. An alkaline diet will be rich in nutrients and antioxidants that can combat the free radicals, reduce inflammation, and fight aging.
Alkaline diet improves energy levels
It is important for the cells in your body to function properly in order to maintain an overall energy level. The cells are responsible for the transfer of oxygen to all parts of the body and hence it is imperative that they remain healthy. Unhealthy cells lead to poor oxygen supply within the body, which in turn can lead to overall fatigue and a lack of energy. The pH level of the body is another factor that can affect the ability of the cells to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the high energy molecule that provides us with the energy to do all the day to day activities. This process will not take place effectively if the pH levels of your body are too acidic. Alkaline foods, on the other hand supply your body with all the essential nutrients, which provide you with energy that lasts throughout the day.
Alkaline diet helps you sleep better
An alkaline diet not only energizes your body, but also helps you sleep better. Studies reveal that many people who follow an alkaline diet, containing alkalizing vegetables and fruits have peaceful and restful sleep. The mineral magnesium, found in chlorophyll rich vegetables like leafy greens helps in relaxing and promoting sleep.
Boost your immune system with an alkaline diet
Eating the right foods and maintaining the perfect acid-alkaline balance in the body can boost your immunity and keep you protected from diseases. When you eat acid forming foods, your body must work hard to neutralize the excess acidity. If your body does not get alkaline foods to neutralize the acidity, it starts extracting alkaline minerals from your cells and tissues. This, if happens for a prolonged period of time will weaken you and increase your vulnerability to diseases. On the other hand, when you consume plenty of alkaline forming foods, your body will be in the correct alkaline state and hence will be energetic and able to function at its best. Eating an alkaline diet rich in immune enhancing antioxidant foods like fresh vegetables, fruits, and leafy greens will help in keeping your pH under check, which in turn promotes the optimal functioning of the immune system.
Alkaline diet for healthy teeth
As the pH level becomes too acidic, there is a chance that your mouth will also be acidic. An acidic environment is perfect for the bacteria to thrive and grow at a faster rate. These bacteria are responsible for causing various problems in the mouth, such as tooth decay, cavities, bad breath and gum diseases. Switching to an alkaline diet can reduce the acidity in the mouth and destroy the favorable living environment of the bacteria, thereby protecting your teeth and gums from diseases and damage.
Alkaline foods reduce pain and inflammation
Unhealthy foods like processed and junk foods play a major role in increasing acidity in the body, which may lead to chronic inflammation. Consumption of alkaline foods can counteract the harmful effects of these acidic foods and detoxify all the toxins and wastes from the body. An alkaline diet consists of fresh fruits and vegetable that contains phytonutrients and antioxidants that can fight inflammation. Studies reveal that an alkaline diet can have a positive effect on chronic pain as well. Magnesium is a mineral that helps in reducing inflammation and tissue and joint pain. This mineral is needed for the metabolism of vitamin D and it has been found that when the levels of vitamin D in the body are low, it worsens the pain. According to studies, eating an alkaline diet can help to balance the levels of magnesium in the body, which helps in metabolizing vitamin D and thus reducing pain.
Alkaline diet improves brain function
Nutrition plays a key role in optimizing your brain functions. According to health experts, an alkaline diet can have a positive impact on mental health. Metabolism problems especially the improper functioning of the enzymatic systems is considered to be a factor that may lead to mental problems. An alkaline diet helps to restore the functions of the enzymes by supplying the body with adequate nutrition.
Alkaline diet keeps your heart healthy
The health of your heart depends to a great extent on your eating habits. Fresh fruits and vegetables are considered to be heart healthy foods. The alkaline diet comprises of these kinds of healthy foods rich in fiber content and antioxidants that not only improves the health of your cardiovascular system, but also helps to prevents heart diseases.
Alkaline diet reduces your risk of cancer
Studies indicate that it is not possible for the cancer cells to live in an environment that is alkaline in nature, because such an environment is rich in oxygen and it kills the cancerous cells. It has been found that the cancer cells can grow and proliferate only in an environment with a pH in the range of 6.5 to 7.5. Avoiding acid forming foods and focusing on an alkaline diet can prevent the growth and multiplication of cancer cells. Moreover an alkaline diet is rich in antioxidant foods that help to neutralize the cancer causing effects of free radicals.
Alkaline diet can prevent and manage type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a lifestyle disease brought about by unhealthy eating habits and leading a sedentary life. The consumption of processed foods and junk foods can have a negative impact on the blood sugar and insulin levels in the body. Dietary fiber helps in controlling blood glucose levels and is very beneficial for people with diabetes. Since alkaline diet consists of fiber rich fruits and vegetables, it can be very effective for preventing as well as managing type 2 diabetes.
It is considered that consuming foods and drinks that are acid-inducing can make you unhealthy leading to inflammation, colds, and even chronic diseases such as osteoporosis, arthritis, and cancer. According to proponents of alkaline diet, alkaline foods can reduce the stress on your body, make you more energetic and improve your overall health. The food that your eat plays a vital role in keeping your body balanced and functioning at its optimum best. An alkaline diet can provide so many health benefits such as improve your energy, slow down the aging process, keep your mind sharp and protect against many chronic diseases. Eating a diet that comprises mainly of alkaline foods can thus help in improving the quality of your life to a great extent.