How to alkalise your acid body

How to alkalise your acid body

Your blood needs to be slightly alkaline to be at its healthiest with a pH in the range 7.35 to 7.45; your cells and your immune system work better in a slightly alkaline environment. This is especially true for the mitochondria (power stations) which become less efficient as the acidity increases. However, don't make a basic health mistake - your gut needs to be acidic.

i) Understanding pH

First, let's understand pH.  The range for pH is 0 to 14. Water has a pH of 7. Any number below this is acidic; any number above is alkaline.

Your contents of your stomach typically are at a pH of around 3. That pH increases as food passes from the stomach into the GI tract but, for health, this mix of enzymes, bacteria and food by-products needs to remain in an acid medium.

ii) The gut and Lactic Acid bacteria

When you were a baby being breast fed, your GI tract had a pH of approximately 5.5. This allowed baby to pick up Lactic Acid Bacteria - typically Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus family members - and keep the bad, gram-negative, alkaline loving bacteria away. Sadly, as we age, our stomach becomes less efficient, producing less acid and our GI pH moves nearer to pH 7, making us more likely to pick up pathogens and less able to derive all the nourishment we ideally should from our foods. So, the first issue is to keep our gut in tip top condition as we age.

This can be achieved by avoiding a lifestyle with factors that damage a healthy microbiome - drugs, antibiotics, proton pump inhibitors, and excess alcohol, smoking and stress. Food poisoning, parasites and viruses such as Epstein Barr, herpes and HPV will also cause problems.

You could supplement with probiotics - Lactobaccilus rhamnosus and Bifidobacterium infantis are two strains of Lactic Acid bacteria proven to reach the gut and generate real benefits.

Go to: Lactic Acid Bacteria explained

But diet is critical too.  We know there are foods that can feed the 'infections' in the gut - from E. coli to yeasts - foods such as sugar, high fructose corn syrup, lactose, alcohol, and even eating fruit after meals favour the 'bad', while extra virgin olive oil and fish oils favour bacteria that make anti-inflammatory compounds as do pectins, inulins and especially ellagitannins (in berries, walnuts).

Go to: Foods that increase good gut bacteria

Lemons and limes increase acidity, ant-acids and sodium bicarbonate destroy it. Protein in the diet releases pepsin and acid in the stomach; carbohydrate causes the release of ptyalin in the mouth and this demands more alkalinity.

So, all these factors need to be considered to get the GI tract working better for you - improving digestion and absorption and keeping pathogens at bay. If you are concerned about this as you age, you can even take a pancreatic/digestive enzyme 'helper'.

By now, you will have seen that the mantra of 'You need an alkaline body' is actually not true. It's to simplistic. You most definitely need an acid gut.

Alzheimer's, dementia, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, Hashimoto's, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and lung diseases like asthma and COPD all have their origins in the gut. You must keep the bad pathogens down, and promote the good bacteria for a healthy microbiome and a healthy body. 

We also know that certain health conditions are linked with changes in blood pH. Lung disease, kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, asthma, and cancer. The important question is "Is this cause or effect?" 

iii) Minerals control acidity or alkalinity

The pH of water is 7, it is neutral. But not always. In fact, tap water is regulated to be between 6.5 and 8.5 and is most usually about 7.5. Sea water is usually around 8. It is 'alkaline water'. Reverse osmosis water, consumed in many poorer countries can have a pH of between 7 and as acid as 5.

What you will understand from the above is that you need minerals in water to increase it's pH to be close to that of blood (7.35 to 7.45).  If you consume well-mineralised water it has a pH approaching 7.4. If you take all the minerals out, the pH can move below 7.

The way to have a healthy gut, but alkaline blood is through minerals - particularly low sodium, but high potassium and magnesium. Those three minerals control the acidity or alkalinity of your cells too.

Unfortunately, we live in a world pushing sodium in processed and preserved foods - from baked beans to bacon and from Chinese Food to take home TV dinners.  We also destroy our magnesium levels through, drugs, alcohol and poor diet with low consumption of fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts but too much cows' dairy. 40% of adults in the UK and USA are magnesium deficient.

Warburg is often quoted as saying that when you were ill you had an acid body. This is not totally true. He was concerned with the biochemstry of how your cells performed efficiently. He noted that cancer tumours were acidic, and that in cases of illness the power stations in your cells had switched from burning potassium to burning sodium. And this created an acid, low oxygen environment. His views were in fact very similar to those of Gerson. 

iv) Cellular efficiency involving the mitochondria, magnesium and potassium

Your cells' energy production depends on you having good levels of magnesium and potassium and low cellular levels of sodium. As we explain in 'Acid Bodies and cancer' (click here to link), the energy production systems in your cells' power stations (mitochondria) thrive on potassium. If sodium displaces the potassium, the mitochondria will use it, but the by product of a sodium salt is more acid that its potassium equivalent would have been.

With every round of the energy producing Krebbs Cycle, the cell becomes more acidic and a downward spiral sets in - the cell starts using less oxygen, makes even less energy and so on. When the energy of the cell (think battery) falls below a certain point, the p53 gene can switch off - that's the gene that control the regulation rate of the cell. Other genes working on lower energy needs - like ras - take over and the cells start dividing rapidly, making a complex that is acidic - a tumour. 

Magnesium is required by a pump on the membrane of the cell to pump in potassium and pump out sodium. If the pump doesn't work, osmosis takes over and, since your overall body has much higher levels of sodium than potassium, mitochondrial failure starts. 

The pump can also be blocked by excessive oestradiol, and this tends to occur in ER+ve breast cancers for example.

You should also consume potassium at 5 times the level of sodium. Few people do. You can make simple changes like giving up ordinary salt and switching to Himalayan salt. And you should avoid all foods that increase your sodium intake and instead focus on potassium- and magnesium-rich foods. That's the Rainbow Diet. 

Go to: The Mediterranean diet - probably the healthiest diet in the world

v) Acid and alkaline 'Residue' producers

A number of commentators talk about acid residue foods or alkaline residue foods. They talk about Acid Ash or Alkaline Ash in the gut. I have asked two of the top experts in the UK to prove to me that these exist. They can't. It is tosh - and anyway irrelevant.

vi) Lifestyle, stress, diet and more cause acid cells and mitochondria

OK. we've talked about potassium and magnesium foods being essential for efficient, oxygenated cells. And about the need for an acid gut so that you can derive the maximum nourishment.

We have talked about how oestradiol - made in your fat stores by aromatase enzymes - can cause the metabolic failure of the mitochondria. What else?

Stress via cortisol and adrenalIn can turn on an enzyme present in every cell of your body (COX-2) making highly inflammatory hormones called eicosonoids. A group of 6 of these are called prostaglandins and are involved in arthritis. When COX-2 is turned on, it creates chronic inflammation all over your body, and acidity increases. 

UCLA have a Stress Management Laboratory which specialises in cancer, and they have concluded from their research studies that four things can correct the stress, inflammation and acidity - the colourful Mediterranean Diet, Fish oils and oily fish, yoga and exercise, meditation and prayer.

Insulin can also turn on COX-2, so graze, don't eat a big meal; graze. 

Garlic, ginger, omega-3, aspirin, curcumin and other natural compounds can prevent the formation of these harmful eicosanoids and alkalise an acid situation.

So both foods and non-dietary factors can cause acid or alkaline situations. 

Here, in summary, is a guide to pin on your fridge door.   

Foods and factors that will help you alkalise your body:

  • Multi-strain probiotics containing lactic acid bacteria (L. rhamnosus; B. infantis)
  • Greens, especially green vegetables, chlorella and wheatgrass, plus fibrous cruciferous vegetables and broccoli, alfa-alfa
  • Vegetables and natural herbs like aubergines, beetroot, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, parsnips, cauliflower, celery, chard, chicory, chives, cucumber, dandelion, dill, endive, fennel,green beans, kale, kelp, lettuce, mushrooms, parsnips, peppers, potatoes, radishes, sorrel, soya beans, spinach, squash, turnips, watercress
  • Whole grains, seeds, nuts
  • Olive oil, fish oils, flaxseed oil, walnut oil
  • Sunshine and vitamin D
  • Ginger, natural willow bark, garlic, onions, apples, curcumin/turmeric, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg 
  • Virtually all fresh fruits especially apples, apricot, avocado, blackberries, blackcurrants, cherries, cranberries, currants, raisons, dates, figs, grapes, lemons, limes, lychees, mangoes, melon, olives, oregano, papaya, peaches, pears, raspberries, redcurrants
  • Raw honey, especially manuka; raw molasses
  • Whole brown rice
  • Medicinal mushrooms
  • Exercise, yoga, meditation
  • Apple cider vinegar (raw organic), fresh lemon or lime juice

Foods and factors that will cause your body to become more acidic

  • Synthetic oestrogens (For example HRT, xenoestrogens)
  • Meat especially mass-market fatty red meat and offal
  • Fruits and vegetables picked unripe and shipped a long way
  • Pulses if you do not skim off the phytic acid (the surface scum) when you cook them
  • Shell fish especially prawns, crab, scallops
  • Processed, prepared, canned foods
  • Dried meats hams, sausage, bacon
  • Chinese foods because of the MSG content
  • All refined carbohydrate products pasta, white bread, white rice, pies, pastries, cakes, noodles, refined breakfast cereals, doughnuts, dumplings
  • Salted snacks crisps, peanuts
  • All cows' dairy
  • Fizzy sweet drinks
  • Prepared fruit juices and smoothies (high sugar, processed)
  • Caffeine stimulates liver to release glucose into blood stream (even diet drinks!)
  • Preservatives, jams etc
  • Pickled products
  • Sodium bicarbonate
  • Alcohol, especially beer and spirits
  • Lack of sleep
  • Stress, negative emotions, guilt
  • Tobacco

The list is meant to be indicative, not exhaustive. 

"If you are looking for probiotics, pancreatic/digestive enzymes and supplements you can trust, why not see what Our Natural Selection has in store. They've done te hard work selecting brands for you. Click HERE."


For more information read:
Acid Bodies and cancer
Beneficial bacteria
Can candida cause cancer?
Cancer is a fungus Dr Simoncini
The Rainbow diet and how it can help you beat cancer

Cancer Prevention - Diet and Lifestyle
CancerAcitve Logo
Subscribe (Free e-Newsletter)

Join Chris'

Join Chris' NewsletterSignup today for free and be the first to get notified on new updates.