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Acid-base balance: how to bring it into balance!

Do you know what the term acid-base balance means and how you can positively influence it? In our blog post, we explain everything you need to know about the acid-base balance and our new related product.

Acid-base balance: what is it actually?

The acid-base balance is primarily the regulation of the concentration of hydrogen ions in the body.

One measure of this is the pH value. You may remember this value (scale from 0 to 14) from your chemistry lessons. Everything between 0 and 6.99 is considered acidic, between 7.01 and 14 alkaline. A pH value of exactly 7 is considered neutral.

Even the smallest changes in the concentration of hydrogen ions can have a huge impact on processes in the organism. The pH value is therefore kept within very narrow limits. This is achieved either by various buffer systems in the body or via the lungs, kidneys and liver. The kidneys and lungs are particularly important for the elimination of acids: everything that our buffer systems cannot manage is excreted via the kidneys or exhaled via the air we breathe.

Different pH values prevail in our body. In the stomach, for example, there is an acidic environment so that the stomach acid can work optimally. In the blood, the pH value is slightly alkaline, at around 7.4.

Why is the acid-base balance so important?

A balanced acid-base balance is of central importance for the function of proteins and cells as well as the permeability of membranes and thus for the course of metabolic processes in our organism.

If there is an imbalance (e.g. due to metabolic disorders or certain diseases), either hyperacidity (=acidosis) or hypoacidity (=alkalosis) can occur. Both disorders of the acid-base balance can impair vital metabolic functions and may have life-threatening consequences.

In addition, various studies indicate that a highly acid-forming diet can also be harmful to our organism in the long term. An acid-forming diet is said to have a negative impact on bone health and promote osteoporosis. It is also said to increase muscle and joint pain, high blood pressure and fatigue, as well as the risk of kidney stones and rheumatism.

The acid-base balance can also become unbalanced due to stress and lack of exercise.

Which foods are alkaline and which are acidic? How acidic or alkaline a food is can be determined by the so-called PRAL value. This abbreviation stands for the acid load of the kidneys and shows how many acids have to be excreted in the urine to keep the acid-base balance in equilibrium. Foods with a negative PRAL value produce more bases (such as vegetables and fruit) and the acid load is low. If the value is positive, more acids are formed and the acid load is high (as with meat). In one study, for example, the intake of one liter of orange juice made the urine of healthy test subjects more alkaline. Studies with mineral waters rich in hydrogen carbonate also show the same effect.

Plant-based foods such as fruit, vegetables, potatoes, herbs, fruit juices and mineral water rich in hydrogen carbonate are therefore particularly alkalizing. The minerals they contain, such as potassium, calcium, magnesium and sodium, increase the alkalizing effect of a food. In contrast, minerals such as phosphorus and chlorine as well as the sulphur-containing amino acids methionine and cysteine increase the acid load. Acid-forming foods are therefore primarily protein-rich foods of animal origin such as meat, fish, sausages and cheese, ready-made products and sugary and alcoholic drinks.

The acidifying effect can be counteracted by eating sufficient quantities of alkaline foods at the same time. Oils and fats have neither an alkaline nor an acidic effect, they are neutral.


Interesting: Which foods have an acid-forming effect in the body is not determined by taste, but by the digestive processes, which produce more bases or acids depending on the food. For example, a lemon is acidic in taste, but has an alkaline effect in the body.

What can you do to balance your acid-alkaline balance?

As already mentioned, our diet influences the acid-alkaline balance of our body. However, due to a lack of time and stress, our diet can often be unbalanced and one-sided. It is therefore important to eat a predominantly alkaline diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables. Animal products should generally be avoided.

You should also get enough exercise and exercise regularly to improve the elimination of acids via the air you breathe. It is important that you do not overstress your body, as intensive physical activity increases the release of lactate, which in turn increases the acid load. Also make sure you lead a stress-free lifestyle and get enough sleep.

Our alkaline powder also has a supportive effect on the acid-base balance. It contains a combination of four different minerals (zinc - also available as pure zinc tablets, magnesium, calcium and potassium) and vitamin D. The individual components of the powder have a positive effect on the muscles, nervous system, blood pressure, bones and energy metabolism. The most important functions at a glance:

  • Zinc contributes to normal acid-base metabolism
  • Calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and zinc contribute to the maintenance of normal bones
  • Magnesium contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue
  • Magnesium contributes to electrolyte balance
  • Calcium contributes to normal energy metabolism
  • Potassium and magnesium contribute to the normal function of the nervous system
  • Potassium contributes to the maintenance of normal blood pressure
 

Conclusion

A high intake of plant-based products ensures sufficient alkaline intake. As a high intake of vegetables and fruit is also responsible for many other positive effects, the German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends a daily intake of at least 400 g of vegetables (around 3 portions) and 250 g of fruit (around 2 portions). Animal products should not be consumed and - if at all - only in very small quantities in order to reduce the acid load and protect against various illnesses. If you want to support your acid-base balance even more, you should try our alkaline powder.

Sources: https://www.ernaehrungs-umschau.de/fileadmin/Ernaehrungs-Umschau/pdfs/pdf_2011/10_11/EU10_2011_562_568.qxd.pdf
https://www.ernaehrungs-umschau.de/fileadmin/Ernaehrungs-Umschau/pdfs/pdf_2006/05_06/EU05_168_173_Version02.pdf
https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/10/1/103