Are You Acidic? Top Foods to Balance Your pH
I often run online cleanses and the first step that I have my clients do is to look at their pH. This is such a fun and informative exercise to do, and is so simple, easy and cost effective! It also gives you a strong insight as to where your current pH levels are at so you can make any necessary shifts. In order to test your pH, you will have to buy pH urine and/or saliva strips at your local drug store or health food store. I really love the genuine health strips. Follow the simple steps below to test your pH:
Pickup pH strips from the local drugstore or health food store.
Do a reading first thing in the morning, 1 hour before a meal or 2 hours after
eating. It is up to you when you do it (whatever is most convenient for you!) just
make sure it is consistent as at the same time each day.
Tear off a strip 2.5cm long.
If testing urine, test mid-stream. If testing saliva, make sure to spit once and on
the second time spit saliva onto a spoon and dip pH strip in it.
Try testing each day for 30 days and as you make shifts to a healthier diet
including more anti-inflammatory foods you may see this shift! An ideal reading is between 7-7.4.
Understanding the Role of Inflammation
Chronic inflammation is a large problem amongst westerners due to high levels of stress, poor quality diets, toxins in our environment and not enough sleep. We are constantly in overdrive, fight or flight and are always being stimulated through content overload and stimulants like coffee.
Over time, if your body is constantly in an inflammatory state, your body can become more susceptible to disease and imbalances in the body, causing uncomfortable health symptoms. Inflammation is needed if we have an injury or a cut (short-term!). However, if the inflammation serves no purpose (and becomes constant long-term!) it can damage the body.
When focusing on an anti-inflammatory diet we are supporting healthy pH levels in the body. If testing too acidic on your pH scale, we know there is too much inflammation in the body. You want to aim for a slightly more alkaline environment in the body, which means consuming some amazing nutritious anti-inflammatory (and neutral to high alkalinity foods) while avoiding inflammatory (high acidic) foods.
Over time, too much inflammation and too much acidity can lead to: arthritis, joint pains, digestive issues, fatigue, skin issues like eczema or psoriasis, toxic overstressed liver, heart disease, many cancers, hormonal imbalance and more. Now, I know because you are reading this you're open to making shifts in your health and well-being and want to live a long vibrant and healthy life? Am I right?
Well, this is a simple strategy for you to follow that is only going to benefit the healthy state of your body! Understanding and using the right foods to consume in order to reduce inflammation in the body is one of the best strategies long-term to lower your risk of any long-term health symptoms.
Let's look at my top foods to help balance the pH levels in the body.
Top 11 Foods to Balance pH
1. Fresh fruits (organic preferably) galore!
- Lemons, limes, grapefruit, melons, apples, pears, oranges, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, etc...
2. Fresh Vegetables (organic preferably) galore!
- Asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, celery, etc...
3. Dark leafy greens are your best friend!
- Kale, spinach, arugula, bok choy, etc...
4. Nuts and seeds (raw and unsalted)
- Cashews, almonds, brazil nuts, Try using nut and seed butter for something different.
5. Beans and Lentils
- Lima, navy, kidney, chick peas, etc...
6. Healthy Oils
- Avocado oil, coconut oil, walnut oil, flaxseed oil, pumpkinseed oil, hemp seed oil etc...
7. Alkaline Water
- Reverse osmosis
8. Herbal Teas
- Ginger, peppermint, dandelion, lemongrass, etc...
9. Apple cider vinegar
- Choose raw, organic and with the mother
10. Whole grains
- Quinoa, millet, buckwheat (kasha)
- Probiotic rich food sources such as kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut and kombucha
Another key aspect of balancing your pH is to avoid food intolerances and sensitivities. Which is a whole other blog post and topic. But, if you are sensitive to any of the foods mentioned above you will want to avoid them and work on healing the gut. If no food sensitivities are present, then bring in a combination of foods mentioned and you are well on your way to improving your pH levels!
Stephanie, CNP Holistic Nutritionist