For the Alkaline Naturals, a well-balanced pH level in the body is determined by the food we consume. This claim is where the alkaline diet was made, which focuses on having an eating plan that emphasizes the fruits and vegetables to achieve the body’s optimal pH levels. Followers of this diet believe that alkaline-rich foods can contribute to various health benefits, while an acid-producing diet can disrupt the blood’s normal pH levels.
How Alkaline Diet Works
Since this diet comes from a theory that some foods can harm the body system, it encourages that eating particular foods and drinking certain beverages can improve the body’s acid levels. So, the general rule for this diet is to make sure that about 80 percent of the consumed food volume should be alkaline-rich foods.
Various scientists use many methods to measure the alkalinity of food. One of these is the potential renal acid load (PRAL). On this scale, 0 means neutral, negative numbers mean necessary, while positive numbers are acidic. For instance, foods like cheese, meat, shellfish, and fish have higher PRAL and produce acid after being consumed. Meanwhile, vegetables like spinach (with -14.0 PRAL) and fruits like watermelon (with 1.1 PRAL) are said to be alkaline.
Benefits of Alkaline Diet
Alkaline diet proponents claim that this is an anti-cancer diet and can promote various health benefits to the system. Some of them are the following:
- Increased consumption of fruits and vegetables lessens the risks of having chronic diseases like hypertension and heart problems.
- Less acidic foods can contribute to the increase of the growth hormone. Besides its anti-aging properties, this hormone improves cardiovascular health, memory, and cognitive performance.
- Alkaline foods increase the available magnesium content in the body. This mineral is essential in the daily functioning of the enzyme systems resulting in energy and metabolism improvements.
- With increased consumption of foods and vegetables, it helps the body achieve a healthier weight, which leads to other health benefits.
- As mentioned, the alkaline diet has anti-cancer benefits because it encourages the healthy turnover of the body cells that prevents the increase of abnormal or cancer cells.
- According to some research, more intake of alkaline-rich foods provides more protection from decreasing bone strength and muscle waste, especially during old age.
Disadvantages of the Alkaline Diet
Unfortunately, there is a lack of evidence regarding the science behind the concept of the alkaline diet, especially on the fact of how acidic foods can affect the pH levels negatively.
Since it focuses mostly on fruits and vegetables, the little amounts of carbohydrates and protein in the alkaline diet can affect the daily functions of the body, especially in the energy needed for everyday performance.