Posted on May 3, 2014
With a following of A-List celebrities, the Alkaline Diet is popping up in the news all over the place. But what is it exactly? The Alkaline Diet (also known as the Acid Alkaline Diet, Acid Ash Diet, or Alkaline Ash Diet) contends that when you eat too many acid-forming foods, it knocks your pH out of balance. And when your pH is out of balance, your body is in an acidic state. Any number of diseases now have the perfect habitat to form and grow.
The Alkaline diet claims you can avoid the acidic state by eating alkaline-forming foods. This prevents disease, increases longevity, encourages weight loss and slows down aging. A strict version of this diet is 80% alkaline forming foods and 20% acid-forming foods. The less strict version is a 60%/40% ratio. There is no calorie counting. Essentially the emphasis is on whole foods because processed foods are acid-forming. You can kiss goodbye ALL processed foods on the Alkaline diet. And meat, eggs, dairy, white sugar, white flour, ocean fish, most grains, chocolate, caffeine, and alcohol are goners too.
What are some of the benefits of the alkaline diet? Well, eliminating processed foods and sticking to a whole foods based diet is always a positive. It tends to reduce sodium and fat intake which can lower blood pressure, cholesterol and the risk of heart disease. Weight loss will typically occur with this shift since you’re also eating less sugar and more fiber. On the Alkaline diet, you consume fewer calories but feel full longer. Some preliminary studies show that the Alkaline Diet reduces the risk of colon cancer and type 2 diabetes.
Some medical professionals think there isn’t enough evidence yet to prove any of the claims that the diet makes. Any diets that exclude entire food groups can be harmful in that you lose out on all the vitamins and nutrients they have to offer which can create deficiencies in the body. This kind of highly restrictive diet will also be hard for many to stick to. And there are a lot of rules to follow. You will need to spend time researching which foods are alkaline-forming and which are acid-forming. Eating at restaurants is also a bit tricky.
Think green when it comes to the most alkaline-forming foods. Spinach, kale and broccoli are on the top of the list. Fresh fruits like cherries, blueberries, bananas, peaches, pears, pineapple, and watermelon should be eaten in moderation. As should brown rice, wheat, legumes, nuts, seeds, some fish and fats such as cold pressed olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil. Drinking lots of water, green tea, and ginger tea is also recommended. If you have the willpower of alkaline eater Gwyneth Paltrow, start blending your green smoothies pronto!