All foods can be classified into basic and acidic, although there are also a small number of neutral foods. The terms basic and acidic foods mean the reaction that these foods cause in the body during the digestion process. The alkalinity, that is, the acidity of a food, is measured by the pH factor. Any food that has a pH value of less than 7 is acidic, while alkaline foods have a value of more than 7.
Therefore, the lower the pH value of the food, the more acidic the food is. Our body should be moderately alkaline, but a fast lifestyle and unhealthy diet make our body more acidic than it should be, which leads to various diseases and disorders in the body. That’s why you should consume foods that are neither too basic nor too acidic, that is, you need to combine foods correctly, in order to establish a balance in the body.
A healthy pH balance in the body should be around 7, and with proper nutrition it can be returned to normal. In the lesson of the text, you will learn more about basic and acidic foods and what kind of reaction they cause in the body.
When we introduce some acidic food into the body, after its digestion, an acidic residue remains in our body, which accumulates and leads to a condition called acidosis, i.e. excessive acidity. This condition slows down the functioning of our entire organism and causes a lack of energy and various health problems, and can also lead to excess weight. In order for the body to neutralize excess acidity in the body, it begins to release essential minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, etc. In order for the body not to waste energy and nutrients in this way, it is necessary to consume alkaline, that is, basic food. Alkaline food will rid the body of acidic residues, regulate body weight and make us healthy and energetic.
What is important is that it does not necessarily mean that foods that taste sour are acidic foods. For example, a lemon that is sour, after digestion, gets a higher pH value, and that is why it belongs to alkaline foods. Likewise, meat and dairy products have a high alkaline value before they enter the body, but after digestion, their pH value decreases, so meat and dairy products are acidic foods. Below is a list of alkaline and acidic foods.
Basic (alkaline) foods
Buckwheat. Buckwheat belongs to extremely alkaline foods and is an excellent substitute for wheat. In addition to other health benefits, it is good for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases.
Olive oil. Olive oil is also one of the most important alkaline foods. It contains vitamin E and monounsaturated fatty acids, and thanks to its anti-inflammatory effect, it is good for the treatment of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Fruits and vegetables. Almost all raw fruits and vegetables are alkaline. These include lemon, avocado, tangerine, raspberry, umeboshi plum, carrot, zucchini, mango, celery, figs, cucumber, grapefruit, garlic, broccoli, grapes, kiwi, banana, lettuce, radishes, strawberries, pineapple, spinach, pears, oranges, radishes, watermelon, onions, etc. Melon is another in a series of alkaline foods that are good for health, primarily for the health of the heart and blood vessels. Swiss chard and cabbage, with their antiviral, antibacterial and anticancer effects, belong to extremely alkaline foods.
In addition to raw fruits and vegetables, alkaline foods also include seaweed and mushrooms such as champignons and oyster mushrooms. Some other foods that reduce acidity in the body and are alkaline are soy and soy products, as well as nuts such as almonds and coconuts. However, after heat treatment, these nuts become sour, like desiccated coconut. Of the seeds, only sesame causes an alkaline reaction.
Fast food. Acidic foods primarily include fast food that is rich in trans fats and refined sugars. White and brown sugar, artificial sweeteners, table salt, white flour, processed cheeses, fried foods, hazelnuts, walnuts, chocolate, ice cream, jam and fatty spreads are highly acidic foods. Also, white bread, cakes and pastries lead to an acidic reaction and loss of calcium from the bones.
Coffee, alcohol, smoking. Large amounts of caffeine, various sweeteners and alcohol, as well as smoking also increase acidity in the body. Do not drink more than three coffees during the day because this will increase acidity and cause osteoporosis and other bone diseases due to calcium loss.
Meat and dairy products. An acidic reaction in the body often occurs due to proteins of animal origin, which are found in meat and dairy products. Calcium increases the alkaline value, so dairy products will be more or less acidic depending on how much calcium they contain. Research has shown that for every 10 g of excess protein that we take into the body, we lose about 100 mg of calcium through the urine. In order not to lose minerals, do not overdo it with proteins. Of the dairy products, raw goat milk and whey have the lowest acidity.
In addition to the above, sour foods include corn, barley, rye, peanuts, pistachios, ketchup, but also sesame and almond oil, tofu cheese, tomatoes, black tea, etc. Fruits that cause an acidic reaction include plums, cranberries, pomegranates and blueberries, but this does not mean that these foods should be completely avoided. Also, all seeds except sesame cause increased acidity in the body.
After you have learned which foods are alkaline and which are acidic, you should also know that it is best to eat raw foods because cooking increases the acidity of foods. Alkaline raw foods are thought to be essential for health. What is most important for the alkalinity of our organism, i.e. for a balanced pH level, is water intake. Namely, we should keep in mind that 70% of our body is made up of water. So, drink sufficient amounts of water during the day (6-8 glasses), exercise regularly and try to eat a little more alkaline foods, in order to be healthy and full of energy.