Are you thinking about following a healthier lifestyle? Going on an alkaline diet might be a good idea for you especially if you’re particularly concerned about your kidney. Considered to be one of the more reliable diets today, the alkaline diet comes with many benefits.
How Does It Work?
The typical explanation for the alkaline diet is that it will help raise your body’s pH levels. All liquids register on the pH scale from 0 to 14. The idea is that a higher number means that the body is more alkaline as opposed to acidic. Water actually registers at a perfect 7.
According to proponents of the alkaline diet, by choosing alkaline foods, you’re raising the blood’s pH and somehow improving your body’s ability to fight diseases. An alkaline blood level also helps promote weight loss.
Note though that there’s really no evidence supporting this particular school of thought. Just because you raised your blood’s pH level doesn’t mean you’re instantly getting healthier. But does that mean you shouldn’t follow an alkaline diet at all?
Of course not! Studies show that following an alkaline diet can still be beneficial to your health. Since most alkaline food items comprise of fruits and vegetables, following this plan actually contributes to your overall health while promoting weight loss.
Benefits of an Alkaline Diet Plan
So what exactly can an alkaline diet do for you? Here are some of the benefits that come with this lifestyle change:
1. Helps with weight loss.
An alkaline diet tends to be lower in calories, hence the weight loss that comes with shifting to this particular dietary routine. Remember that weight loss is all about consuming less calories than you’re burning. Since alkaline food items are naturally low in calories, limiting your consumption to these items can definitely help with shedding some pounds.
2. Helps prevent heart disease.
Heart disease is one of the biggest killers in the United States. Consuming an alkaline diet can help minimize the risk of developing cardiovascular problems particularly in seniors.
It is because the diet is naturally low in calories and fat, thereby encouraging weight loss. By maintaining a healthy weight, individuals can lower all the risks that come with extra fat carried in the body.
3. Helps prevent cancer.
Another benefit of this diet is that it can help reduce the risk of cancer. This is because an alkaline diet discourages consumption of large amounts of meat and processed food items. Instead, followers of this lifestyle opt for fresh food products abundant in fruits and vegetables.
Packed in vitamins and minerals, the American Cancer Society actually recommends a diet closely related to the alkaline diet for people who want to decrease their cancer risk.
4. Improves kidney function.
The kidney, together with the liver, functions as the body’s filtering system. It manages to get rid of any toxins or unneeded chemicals in the body. However, the kidneys can get tired from time to time and find it harder to function. Studies show that a high-acid diet makes it difficult for the kidney.
If you have a kidney disease, a high-acid diet can actually cause more damage. In contrast, switching to an alkaline diet is more kidney-friendly. This makes it easier for the kidney to filter the nutrients and therefore give it time to recover.
5. Helps with back pain.
The evidence connecting an alkaline diet and back pain is fairly weak. However, there’s nothing wrong with trying this dietary plan especially if you’re suffering from consistent back pain.
6. Improve muscle mass.
A study in conducted in females shows that eating primarily alkaline foods helped improve their muscle mass. This is just a small increase but significant, nonetheless. When combined with routine exercise, following an alkaline diet can be greatly beneficial for overall health.
7. Good for people with allergies.
The beauty of this diet is that it discourages consumption of most food items that trigger allergies. This includes egg, milk, and even seafood.
Examples of Alkaline Foods
There are actually lots of alkaline foods that you can incorporate in your diet. Generally, all fruits, vegetables, and seeds are alkaline foods. Of course, the exception here are citrus fruits which have a low pH and are therefore classified as acidic.
In contrast, acidic food items include meat, cheese, dairy products, coffee, processed food items, and even fish. Coffee, soda, and alcohol also fall within the category of acidic and should therefore be cut out of your diet. Fortunately, there are food products that can be used to substitute these missing items.
For example, soy coffee can be your new source of energy in the morning. Protein sources can be in the form of legumes, tofu, or lentils. Note though that it’s important to drastically increase consumption of these products to replace protein that comes from meat.
Following an Alkaline Diet Plan
Is the alkaline diet sustainable? Yes, of course. Just like any diet, it can be a natural part of your life through consistent practice. Note though that the diet will cut off a lot of food items, thereby necessitating a drastic change in how you buy groceries.
A good tip is to start slow and simply eliminate one food at a time. This will give you the chance to find acceptable replacements and get used to the new taste.
Keep in mind that an alkaline diet plan doesn’t mean you should remove all meat and dairy completely. However, consumption of these products should be drastically reduced because your protein sources would be coming from another major source.
Generally, you don’t have to commit to heavy exercises on this diet. However, if you can find a happy balance then that should be followed.
To put it simply, an alkaline diet will NOT improve your health by increasing your blood’s pH level. There’s no evidence of that. However, following an alkaline diet plan CAN improve your health simply because most healthy food items are identified as alkaline. Just like any diet however, make sure to consult your doctor before following an alkaline diet plan, especially if you have pre-existing health conditions.