Understanding pH and body acid/base balance

(Health Secrets) It is time for understanding pH. Acidity and alkalinity (pH) are popular topics in natural health circles these days, but people would do better have a true understanding of pH and to concentrate on the role and state of the gut. In fact, the pH of blood, which is what everyone is talking about, is a secondary or tertiary condition! This means it is not a cause in and of itself, but is actually the outcome of other factors that affect the entire body. In an effort to put some of this misinformation in its place, this article will be the first in a series of discussions on pH, starting with the pH of the gut.

The first thing about the current alkaline mania that should be noted is that human bodies are not ruled by alkalinity at all. In fact, our bodies must be a balanced mix of both yin and yang, where yin is alkaline and yang is acid. Without either of these, health and life itself cannot exist. In our discussion of acid and alkaline, we need to also appreciate that acid or alkaline dominance at any given time is governed by three factors:

* The need of the body to thin the blood (acid blood is thinner than alkaline)

* Circadian rhythms (the cycle of the sun, day and night) and

* Parasympathetic (alkaline) and sympathetic (acid) dominance.

With this foundation, we can hopefully come to some reasonable conclusions about pH. The behavior that is so desperate by so many and done out of pure unadulterated fear, where large doses of unnatural substances are taken in the name of alkalizing the blood, cannot possibly be a good thing. It will invariably lead to inconsistent results and possible harm.

I have dealt with this subject a good many times and yet the philosophy continues to be pervasive that alkaline is good and acid is evil. Honestly, how much sense does that make? I wish before we came to a conclusion we would just think about whether it was logical or not!

What is true is that more acidic blood (not urine or saliva and certainly not the gut) is known to be associated with increased incidence of chronic disease.

Considering that the body will acidify the blood to compensate for debris and wastes in it and poor circulation by it, and considering that acidity is also associated with sympathetic dominance (hurry and worry response), we should be taken by no surprise that cancer, heart disease and all chronic disease is associated with blood that is too acidic. What is surprising is that suddenly alkalinity has become an end unto itself and a veritable god to so many!

The final consideration to discuss about pH as part of our foundation is that any and all highly active processes and yang organs are acid dependent, not alkaline dependent. Immune response, the gut lining, cerebral spinal fluid and kidney environment are all acidic by design. The only surprise is the kidney, which is a yin organ. The blood at the kidney is more acidic, however, in a healthy person.

Cleansing is also an acid process. This is one of the great conundrums of the cancer battle using alkaline supplements. If the body is not first cleansed and cellular behavior changed with saturation of raw, live food/juice, the cancer will have a wall built around it that will make it immune from the alkaline substances. Further, the body will shift the blood immediately toward the acid in order to cleanse, which means the natural healthy processes of the body will be interrupted.

While I do not doubt the stories of people who alkalized themselves and rid themselves of their cancer, as with many supplements and products that are supposed to rid the body of cancer, I have many questions about what was done prior to the use of the supposed miracle supplement, which could not have helped anyone by itself, but might well have tipped the scales in the right person who had done sufficient groundwork in some way (emotionally, dietary, physical stressors, etc).

So as we start into our discussion together, I shall make every effort to keep you a little sane, though common sense is a startlingly rare commodity today.

Today, we shall focus on only one idea. This is the idea of the pH of the gut as it relates to chewing. The gut lining is being replaced every 3 days. For this level of activity, there is a corresponding need for acidic conditions. Actually, without an acidic lining (to be distinguished from the contents of the gut, which are acidic in the stomach and alkaline in the presence of fresh bile and more neutral at the end of the large intestine), the gut will easily become infected, inflamed and will react to whatever food is put in it. It will also cause gas and bloating and all manner of dysfunctional digestion.

Many things weaken and alkalize the gut. For example, sitting in front of a computer for many hours, being stressed out all day long, eating sugar, overeating, too much complexity, compensation for cooked food, eating nothing but cooked food, adrenal fatigue, not chewing enough…ahhh, that is the one we are looking for.

When we put food in our mouths, the body will begin to ready itself. This process takes several minutes, really. Smells and the excitement of eating actually help a lot. The most important time, however, is chewing. Here you not only activate the first stage of digestion (saliva), but you also let the body sample the food and get ready for exactly what you are eating. If the combination of foods is simple enough, this is a manageable process. Chewing also relaxes you and puts you into a more parasympathetic state. The person who chews enough and eats simple, whole food meals that are mostly raw, will probably have a normal gut pH and therefore will have taken the single biggest step toward healthy blood pH.

It is always striking to me and a little sad that so many who pretend to want to heal themselves naturally and enjoy their natural vitality are so eager and willing to do things that are clearly unnatural behaviors to manipulate their bodies. They are stuck in fear. They are doing with less harmful substances and foods exactly what they so freely criticize the medical profession for doing! It is no wonder our health continues to decline. People are losing their anchors and balance in life and are reeling on a relentless sea of supplements, proposals, sales pitches and hype.

There is no clarity of thought in people who have no solid foundation to live by. I have a good deal to say about this that I shall not attempt here, since I am sure it is inappropriate to write a whole book just now.
So here are the rules that go with chewing:

* Take time to relax before eating anything

* Choose simple meals of no more than 4-6 items. Less is better

* Have meals that are at least 75% raw

* Chew the first several bites (or if juicing, chew your juice well for many seconds) very, very well. Take a minute or so per bite!

* After the first several bites, still chew to very small particles before you swallow

* If eating nuts, chew to an absolutely thin paste before swallowing

* Avoid all electromagnetic pollution while eating. This means computers, cell phones and, if possible, wireless routers. It also includes television

* Eat in a clean, organized space that allows minimal stimulation while eating. The stress of clutter should never be within the visual field when eating.

Anyone who follows these rules will get far more than they ever got from any special pH supplement or diet. It will almost immediately improve digestion, assimilation, elimination and both blood and gut pH.

Next issue, we will discuss the benefits of acidifying the stomach specifically in a chronic disease state, and, of course, tell you how to do that.



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