Public recognition of the importance of eating an alkaline diet is growing quickly, but it still has a long way to go. The professionals in the nutrition industry understand the importance of eating a healthy diet because they are faced with the consequences of poor dietary choices of their patients every day. Even the public knows that eating your fruits and veggies is something we should all do, but many of us continue to ignore the warnings.
Maybe the government should start to regulate the fast food industry in the same way that they have forced tobacco companies to put warnings on their packaging, and stopped them from advertising. Can you imagine Ronald McDonald with a sign around his neck informing us that eating a Big Mac and fries increases the risk of getting arthritis or diabetes or cancer?
Why is eating a healthy diet important?
Food and beverages provide fuel for our bodies. Humans are omnivores, which means that our digestive systems can break down and absorb the nutrients from both plants and animals, and eliminate the waste products. Despite the fact that we are omnivores, our bodies work far more efficiently when we consume plant materials. The reason for this is that our bodies are meant to be slightly alkaline (a pH of about 7.3 to 7.4) and raw fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds are alkaline. Meats and dairy products and the myriad of fast foods that we consume are all acidic in varying degrees. The nutrients found in meats and dairy are also important to our nutritional uptake, but we can survive and in fact thrive on far less of the acidic foods and drinks than most of us consume.
It is generally accepted in the health industry that the ideal diet should be 80% alkaline. In Canada and the USA, the average person consumes a diet of 97% acidic foods and beverages. That means our bodies are being fed the wrong fuel. While our bodies have an amazing capacity to process and eliminate excess acid, over time, our bodies become acidic and nasty health issues start happening. For many, the side effects begin with acid reflux and then proceed to diabetes. If left unchecked, the acidic state of our bodies becomes the breeding ground for cancer. It is well documented that cancer and other diseases can not survive in an alkaline environment. If you don’t believe me, or virtually every professional in the nutrition industry and you can afford ten minutes of your time, watch the video of a segment of The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, who interviews Bill Clinton and the medical doctors who helped change or perhaps even saved his life. Mr. Clinton’s doctors say that a proper diet can prevent and even reverse major diseases such as heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. You can watch the video here:
Why does neglecting a proper diet increase our chances of getting sick?
We eat and drink because our bodies need fuel… or at least we should. Our society has created tasty treats which are advertised endlessly in an effort to convince us that we should eat the tasty products. Unfortunately, eating those tasty foods and drinks makes your body acidic. When you are acidic, your body has less ability to “reduce” the potentially damaging free oxygen in your body. Here is where it gets kind of tricky. Let me explain.
Your body obviously needs oxygen to survive. However, up to 2% of the oxygen in your body can and does become free oxygen. That means that the oxygen atoms are unstable and are in search of electrons (negative charges) to make the oxygen stable. If your body doesn’t have negatively charged hydrogen available to provide the electron hungry oxygen atoms with electrons, the free oxygen atoms will scavenge healthy cells in your body. According to the world famous work of Dr. Hayashi, when negatively charged hydrogen is available in your body, it will combine with the free oxygen and convert it to harmless water.
Others scholars such as Sang Whang and Dr. Robert Young claim that alkaline foods or beverages cause the cells in the stomach to produce acid (HCl or hydrochloric acid) and the bi-products of producing the acid are alkaline (negatively charged) buffers that enter the blood stream.
Now matter which theory is correct, it is well known that creating negative charges in the body by consuming alkaline foods or beverages helps reduce the harmful effects of free oxygen, thereby preventing or reversing disease.
Do alkaline foods and alkaline drinks do the same thing? Yes and No
Yes, both alkaline foods and alkaline beverages produce the negative charges that act as powerful and effective antioxidants that can counteract the harmful effects of free oxygen in your body. The food people use ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) as a measurement of the antioxidant capacity of a specif food. The water people use ORP (Oxidation Reduction Potential) to measure the antioxidant capability of water. I have done some preliminary research, but once again, I honestly don’t know how the two measures correlate. I hope to put more research into the comparison of ORAC and ORP in the future… just not today.
No, food provides nutrients that water doesn’t provide, so you can’t live without food. On the other hand, water makes up 70% of your body and acts as your internal transportation system, so you can’t live without water. Survival is not possible without both food and water.
Is either alkaline food or alkaline water better for you than the other?
I don’t think anyone can provide a definitive answer to the question. Both work and both contribute to maximizing your health. I think the right answer is a matter of personal choice. Some people like my wife love their “greens” and don’t care for most forms of processed or junk food. Other people like myself love their junk food and find the taste of many “greens” unpleasant. People like my wife that eat properly don’t require alkaline water as much as people like myself who “cheat” more than we should. Therefore, I believe alkaline water is more important to me than to my wife. The fact that the water produced much faster and dramatic results for me than for Mary confirms my belief. Even though it took longer for the positive effects to show up in Mary’s body than mine, her health responded very positively over the period of a few months despite the fact that she still drinks her “must have” coffee every morning.
Can your body survive without alkaline food or water?
Of course it can, as we see evidence of that every time we look at the people around us. However, we also see that as the world has moved away from wholesome nutritious food and water, people are getting sick. Whether we as individuals choose to do something about it up to each and every one of us.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and are not intended as medical advice.