We have seen many diets followed by people we know or seen by people we admire, like celebrities. One of the most popular diets made by Hollywood actors is the alkaline diet, also known as the alkaline ash diet. This article will help us better understand what an alkaline diet is and its benefits to those who follow it.
Let’s explore the alkaline diet’s benefits and diet plan!
What Is an Alkaline Diet?
We may have heard alkaline diet from Hollywood celebrities like Jennifer Aniston, Victoria Beckham, and Kate Hudson, whose very open that an alkaline diet works for them with positive results. But what exactly is an alkaline diet?
The alkaline diet is also known as the alkaline ash diet or the acid-alkaline diet. It is based on the premise that it can change the pH value of your body and blood. The body’s metabolism is often compared to fire, where the body goes through a chemical reaction to break down a solid mass.
The body’s chemical reactions happen in a slow and structured way. During metabolism, the food we eat leaves an ash residue similar to fire when things get burned. This ash residue is also called metabolic waste. This metabolic waste can be acidic, alkaline, or neutral. This explains that when the body’s metabolic waste is acidic, it also affects the blood, making it acidic.
The alkaline diet was originally designed for health conditions like kidney stones and urine infections. These two conditions affect the pH value of the urine, depending on the food choices. Food that produces acidic ash is more vulnerable to illnesses and diseases, while alkaline ash is considered to be preventive. But there is no evidence yet that an alkaline diet can change the pH value of the body. In addition, the body’s blood pH is highly regulated by kidneys and not through the food we eat.
Benefits of the Alkaline Diet
The alkaline diet is known to be beneficial for those who have chronic illnesses, including cancer. Some study also suggests that the benefits of an alkaline diet include weight loss, improved kidney health, and prevention of heart diseases. Here are some suggested health benefits linked to an alkaline diet consumption.
1. Helps Improve Growth Hormone Levels
Some study suggests that by changing a highly acidic environment, using certain supplements like bicarbonate can promote alkalinity. With improved growth hormone levels, it can offer better brain functioning, especially memory and cognition .
2. Relieves Back Pain
Adding alkaline minerals to the diet may help improve symptoms of back pain. The research does test the benefits of an alkaline diet, so it is still unclear whether it can improve chronic pain .
3. Prevents Osteoporosis
Eating fruits and vegetables may help improve bone health, which may also prevent osteoporosis. Alkaline diets are rich in fruits and vegetables, and this means they’re low in protein. Unfortunately, there is very little evidence that the alkaline diet can prevent osteoporosis .
4. Promotes Healthy Muscles
As people age, muscle mass also decreases. A 2013 study shows preliminary evidence that an alkaline diet can be beneficial in improving muscle health. The study examined 2,689 females during a long-term twin study. The result showed a small but significant increase for those females who include more alkaline food sources in their diet .
How to Start an Alkaline Diet
It is crucial to seek professional advice from your doctor before starting any kind of diet. This includes when you want to start an alkaline diet. It is important to know that the changes you make in your food choices may not directly affect your pH value. But it is worth noting that your improved food choices like adding more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans or lentils, nuts, and seeds can positively affect your overall health.
The Alkaline Diet for Beginners
If you’re only starting to adapting an alkaline diet, it is important that you have consulted your doctor first and that you understand what the diet can provide to your body. You can start by researching more about alkaline food as you gradually transition to this diet.
The Alkaline Diet Plan
If you are thinking of making an alkaline diet plan, then you need to eat more soybeans, tofu, nuts, seeds, legumes, and most fruits and vegetables.
Foods like dairy, eggs, meat, most grains, and highly processed like canned and packaged snacks and even convenience foods are more acidic, so you may want to avoid them when you’re listing down your grocery shopping list.
Now that you’re getting more ideas about an alkaline diet, you may want to start listing down the food you want to include in your shopping list. Here’s a quick list to help you get started.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Try adding to your shopping list leafy vegetables that are said to have an alkaline effect on our bodies. These vegetables include spinach, kale, lettuce, celery, arugula, parsley, and mustard greens.
Cauliflower and Broccoli
Cauliflowers and broccoli contain phytochemicals that are also good for the body. So the next time you plan for your next lunch with family and friends, try sautéed broccoli and add those extra Asian spices to add more flavor. You can also add capsicum, green peas, and beans, and you’ll have a healthy dose of a healthy meal.
If you enjoy eating sweet potato and other root vegetables like taro root, beets, carrots, and the not-so-popular taro root, then you will definitely enjoy your alkaline diet. These root vegetables are known to have a high source of alkali. You can add them to soups, stir-fries, salads, and more.
Nuts are good sources of good fats and are also known to produce an alkaline effect in our bodies. But ensure that you have the right quantity as they are also high in calories. Try adding cashews, chestnuts, and almonds to your list of quick snacks when meal planning.
Bottomline: Alkaline Diet Benefits and How to Start
Following an alkaline diet shows a promising effect on our bodies. But like any diet, ensure that you have sought advice from your doctor and that it is entirely safe for your health condition. We hope that this article helps you decide whether following an alkaline diet could be beneficial for you, just like how celebrities claim they are to be. What is more important is that you will improve the food choices that make you feel healthier and stronger.
Disclaimer: This article is only a guide. It does not substitute the advice given by your healthcare professional. Before making any health-related decision, consult your healthcare professional.
Editorial References And Fact-Checking
- Schwalfenberg G. K. (2012). The alkaline diet: is there evidence that an alkaline pH diet benefits health?. Journal of environmental and public health, 2012, 727630. https://doi.org/10.1155/2012/727630
- Welch, A. A., MacGregor, A. J., Skinner, J., Spector, T. D., Moayyeri, A., & Cassidy, A. (2013). A higher alkaline dietary load is associated with greater indexes of skeletal muscle mass in women. Osteoporosis international : a journal established as result of cooperation between the European Foundation for Osteoporosis and the National Osteoporosis Foundation of the USA, 24(6), 1899–1908. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00198-012-2203-7