My Alkaline Diet

Posts Tagged ‘fact-checking

Welcome to the fourth post in my continuing series on the alkaline diet. Today I want to talk about one of the common concerns about the alkaline diet, which is the idea that this diet requires people to radically modify their eating habits and give up all of the foods they enjoy. In reality, adopting in an alkaline diet does not have to be traumatic. Still, depending on how you currently eat, it may require substantial changes in your eating patterns.

The essence of the acid alkaline diet for optimum health is to cut back on acidifying foods and to eat more alkaline foods. Acidifying foods include all meat, poultry, fish, and seafood, along with most dairy products, eggs, and grains. All refined starches and sugars are acidifying, and should therefore be avoided on the alkaline diet.

In contrast, alkalizing foods include most fruits and vegetables, along with some whole grains, nuts and seeds, lentils, and natural beverages.

As you can see, if you currently subsist on fast food that’s loaded with meat and cheese, along with desserts, snacks, and soft drinks, you’ll have to make some substantial changes in order to reap the benefits of the alkaline diet.

The good news is that the alkaline diet does not require you to eliminate all acid-forming foods. Instead, the goal of the alkaline diet is to achieve an optimal balance between alkalizing and acidifying elements. This means that no food needs to be completely off-limits, but moderation is crucial. You can continue to include a wide variety of natural foods in your diet, including meat and dairy, provided that the majority of the foods you eat are on the alkaline side of the spectrum.

If you are new to the alkaline diet, my advice is to proceed gradually. Instead of trying to going on a drastic alkaline diet detox, choose one specific category of these foods, and then eliminate or significantly reduce its role in your diet. By taking the slow but steady approach, you will increase your chances of sticking with the alkaline diet for the long haul.

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Today I want to talk about a couple of common myths about alkaline diet food which all-too-frequently prevent people from taking full advantage of this healthy nutritional approach.

The first myth is that in order to obtain the alkaline diet benefits you desire, you must give up all acidifying foods. In fact, the goal of eating alkaline diet foods is not to go to an extreme of alkalinity, but rather to achieve a proper balance between acid-forming and alkaline-forming elements in your diet. Just what do I mean by a proper balance? Well, it depends on who you ask, but most experts on alkaline diet food suggest a ratio of 20 to 35% acidifying foods to 65 to 80% alkalizing foods. Therefore, no food has to be completely off-limits on the alkaline diet. Of course, it’s important to make healthy choices, but as long as you eat well most of the time, it isn’t going to kill you to have a hot dog or a bag of potato chips every once in a while.

A related myth is that acid alkaline diets require you to become a vegan or vegetarian. As with the previous myth, there is a grain of truth here. Virtually all animal products are acidifying, which means that reducing your consumption of meat and dairy products will help you to achieve an optimal acid-alkaline balance. However, this does not mean that it is necessary to give up these foods altogether in order to achieve an alkaline diet. Again, the goal of the alkaline diet is not to eliminate all acidifying foods, but to achieve an optimal balance between acid and alkaline foods. As long as you achieve this balance in your overall diet, it is up to you how you choose to trade off different dietary components. For example, if you eat meat, you may have to be extra vigilant about avoiding sugar. Or if you decide to include wheat and other acidifying grains in your diet, you may have cut back on eating dairy products more than someone who doesn’t eat those grains. In conclusion, flexibility and balance are the keys to a successful alkaline diet.