We’ve all heard the term pH balance before, but do you know what it actually means? The pH scale is one that measures the acidity or alkalinity of something. In the case of alkaline foods, we are concerned with the pH of your body. Eating certain foods may affect this measurement, which can lead to several potentially negative health effects.
Ph levels are measured on a scale of 0 to 14. 7.0 is considered neutral; 0 is completely acidic, and 14 is completely alkaline. Your blood needs to be slightly alkaline, with a pH somewhere between 7.35 and 7.45. Generally, your body adjusts its pH levels automatically, keeping your blood right within that target area. However, some argue that many of today’s processed and unhealthy foods are acid-forming and throw off that natural balance.
Too much acid, and your body begins to experience some negative health effects including: fatigue, dental issues, compromised immune function, pain and inflammatory conditions, and even premature aging. By eating foods that are alkaline-producing, you are not depending on your body to balance the acidity, and therefore can avoid some of these health problems.
5 Alkaline Foods for Better Health
Fortunately, eating a diet rich in alkaline-forming foods is quite simple. Sticking with fresh produce is a good place to start. Here are 5 alkaline foods to get you started.
- 1. Lemons are possibly the most alkaline foods around, plus, they offer many health benefits. Starting your day with a glass of lemon water is a good way to work towards balancing your pH levels first thing. While lemons are initially acidic, the end result is alkaline.
- 2. Watermelons are another great alkaline-forming food, and are a great diuretic to boot. Check out some other health benefits of watermelons here.
- 3. Cayenne peppers have numerous benefits even beyond being alkaline-forming. From their antioxidant concentration to their potential added benefits in weight loss ventures, these peppers should be a part of every diet.
- 4. Leafy Greens, like many other alkalizing foods, have a wealth of health benefits. Things like spinach, kale, chard, and collards are rich in folate and vitamin K. They are also great helpers for the digestive system.
- 5. Apples have a pH level of about 8.0. They are also rich in fiber, which makes them great for digestion.
Not all vegetables and fruit are alkaline-producing. Some are actually acidifying. Things like corn, lentils, olives, winter squash, blueberries, and cranberries are considered acid-forming. However, these foods also have amazing benefits. Generally, if you eliminate the acid-forming processed foods, you can still enjoy these acid-forming fruit and vegetables on a regular basis.