We’ve been told time and time again. Drink warm water with fresh lemon when you first wake up, get in your green juice and eat your leafy greens. The reason why? Alkaline!
But what is alkalinity? To understand, we need a refresher in high school chemistry. More specifically, a refresher in pH. pH is the measurement of acidity or alkalinity on a scale of 0-14, with 0 representing the most acidic, and 14 representing the most alkaline.
Our bodies need a certain pH level to function optimally. Our blood must be in the 7.36 to 7.44 range, and our urine between 4.5 and 8.0. When our systems aren’t functioning optimally it puts a stress on the body, creating an imbalance.
When we have too much acidity in our systems, our digestion slows, we increase our risk of fungal infections, hormone imbalance, osteoporosis, accelerated aging, weight gain and cardiovascular damage. Additionally, external stresses, as well as natural cellular processes, create acidity in the body. This is why it is so important to balance out with naturally alkaline foods.
The best goal to set is to consume approximately 80% alkaline foods daily, and the other 20% should come from slightly acidic to moderately acidic foods. Foods of a high acidity should be avoided or consumed minimally.
To help you navigate the grocery store, we’ve compiled a guide of popular foods and their place on the pH scale. Just keep in mind: results of pH testing vary depending on a variety of factors, from the growing region, to the method of cooking, etc.
- lemons and limes
- Himalayan and sea salt
- 9+ alkaline ionized water
- watery greens, such as cucumber and celery
- dark leafy greens, such as kale, collard greens, spinach and cabbage
- sea vegetables and algae, such as spirulina and chlorella
- sprouted grasses
- parsley and cilantro
- most other vegetables, such as tomato, bell pepper, green beans, carrots, radishes, onion, ginger and garlic
- lettuces, such as endive and arugula
- pumpkin seeds
- green tea
- raw, unprocessed coconut water
- coconut meat
- pseudo grains, such as buckwheat, quinoa, wild rice and millet
- raw, unrefined plant oils, such as flax, avocado, coconut, primrose and borage oil
- tap waters, spring water and sea water
- raw goat dairy
- most olive oils
- fresh tart berries, such as raspberries, blackberries, dates and figs
- most sprouted gains and legumes, such as soy and lentils
- brazil nuts
- watery fruits, such as watermelon, melon, grapes and apples
- sweet fruits, such as mangos, oranges, strawberries and cherries
- amaranth, white and brown rice, oats, barley, wheat and other grains
- most cooking oils, grape oils, canola and corn oil
- freshwater fish and organ meats
- dried fruit
- most coffee
- most chocolate
- most mushrooms
- most cheeses
- most condiments
- ocean fish
- black tea
- sugar-sweetened fruit juices
- artificial sweeteners
- white sugars
- refined flours
- pasteurized dairy
- most canned foods
Next time you’re shopping, keep the 80/20 rule in mind and include more alkaline in your diet!