Acidity and Alkalinity – Balancing Your PH

I’ve had to become something of an expert in this field as I have a tendency to gout which – I eventually figured out – was due to my pursuit of what I thought was a healthy diet. Low fat, low carbs, good oils, roughage, and, what turned out to be the culprits, too much high quality protein AND too many whole grains (- including my favourite: Porridge. And no, you don’t see the vegans warning you about that danger!) which do indeed acidify the blood.

However, although the general guidance provided here is reasonably accurate, it falls into the same trap that it warns you about when it tells you that the advisory sources you can find an “are not comprehensive nor are they in agreement.”

For example Citrus fruits are acidic, but they turn alkaline when digested. The same is true for tomatoes. Wrong. Or rather, wrong for some people. Tomatoes actually increase acidity in some people and reduce it in others. This seems to be genetically determined but no one has yet tracked down which genes matter. In the absence of that information the only way to find out the effect on your own body is – literally – “suck it and see”. i.e. using the ph strips recommended (I personally use these if anyone gives a damn) and having established your baseline ph, add a fixed quantity of tomatoes to your diet for a few days and measure the effect on your baseline. If it goes up that’s good news, they’re alkalising your blood. If it goes down, then limit consumption because, for you, they’re an acidifier.

The other problematic advice is on the question of what constitutes the “ideal” ph level and when to measure it. Again the sources disagree, quite seriously. I have found doctors raving against the advice to alkalise and warning that if your morning urine ph level is above 6.5, you’re not digesting your food properly. Others argue that if it’s below 7, you’re in imminent danger of acidosis. Both are bollocks. Like the tomato problem, what will be good for one will be bad for another and you have to find what works best for you. The bad news is that there ain’t no quick and easy path to that solution. It’s taken me about 9 years to gain control of my ph balance in a consistent manner and even now it is easy to become complacent. For example, having fended off the gout attacks for a couple of years, I allowed too much red meat back into my diet last May and was rewarded with a nasty attack just in time for the annual conference I attend in Brighton. Brilliant timing. Only myself to blame.

About Harry Stottle
Refugee from the Stumbleupon Blogicide of October 2011 Here you will find my "kneejerk" responses to the world and what I happen to bump into. For my more detailed considerations and proposals, please visit my website or my previous main blogging site.

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