Back in the early part of the 20th century, a psychic healer by the name of Edgar Cayce emphasized the need to prevent the body from falling into an acidic state due to the many negative health repercussions an acidic pH level created.
Born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, in 1877, Cayce moved to Virginia Beach, Virginia , where the A.R.E (Association for Research and Enlightenment) was established as a center for Cayce's healing and psychic work. Cayce was known as the "Sleeping Prophet," as he went into a hypnotic trance when he did a psychic reading. Prior to his death in 1945, Cayce recorded some 14,000 psychic readings on holistic health and metaphysics over a period of 43 years.
In his many readings on holistic nutrition, Cayce repeatedly stressed a health principle that captured my attention, appealing not only to my sense of reason, but to my intuition as well. In a nutshell, Cayce advised: "Eat 80 percent alkaline foods to 20 percent acidic foods for optimum health."
This was back in the 1920's and 1930's when America's diet wasn't even remotely as acidic as it is today! People ate organic, local and fresh--there were no processed foods or fast foods. The Cayce readings also informed us that "all high starch and protein foods are acid-forming, especially combined with each other or in combinations with fruit." Furthermore, he recommended that people with weight problems (not an epidemic then) should stay away from "too many sugars and starches."
Wheat Belly by William Davis, MD, published just last year and recently re-published in 2012 as Lose the Wheat--Lose the Weight, devotes an entire chapter to the formidable acid-promoting properties of wheat, a ubiquitous grain that seems to be in just about everything!
Chapter 8 is entitled "Dropping Acid: Wheat as the Great pH Disruptor." Dr. Davis discusses the acidic/alkaline balance at length and how our bodies need to maintain an alkaline pH of ideally 7.4. Having evolved into a nation of “wheataholics”, as he terms it, is having a dramatic impact on the body's natural ability to stay balanced. According to Dr. Davis: "Acids drive pH down, triggering a panic mode response from the body to compensate."
As I have learned from my previous research and interest in the acidic/alkaline balance, the body will draw from its own alkaline reserves to maintain its bloodstream pH at 7.4, which is critical since death can result from a blood pH that is too acidic.
Consequently, the body will leach calcium, an alkaline mineral, right out of its skeletal system to survive. As Dr. Davis puts it: "Because maintaining a normal pH is so crucial, the body will sacrifice bone health to keep pH stable....your bones will be turned to mush before pH is allowed to veer off course." Hello osteoporosis! Dr. Davis goes on to say that not only will our bones be better off if we stay alkaline, but our joints will be as well.
In addition to maintaining bone health, my research indicates there are a host of reasons why we need to keep our bodies on the alkaline side of the equation. For example, it is difficult to absorb nutrients from our foods, as well as from the supplements we take, with an acidic pH.
Not only that, but when cells become saturated in acid, it sets the stage for disease. The pH of the cell should be slightly alkaline at 7.1 and if that is not maintained, the cells become starved for oxygen, again setting the stage for disease.
My belief in the integrity of this health concept led to developing the "Body Rescue" Alkalizing Formula nearly 20 years ago. A powdered formula with a very high pH, it contains alkalizing foods such as lima beans and sweet potato flakes, along with vitamins and minerals like potassium and magnesium--both alkalizing minerals--and a blend of alkalizing herbs like bladderwrack, burdock root and parsley. And, the Alkalizing Formula contains 5 grams of fiber as well.
Fiber is the big buzz word in the popular press these days when it comes to nutrition. The alarm is being sounded endlessly: people are not getting enough fiber! Again, according to Dr. Davis in Wheat Belly, this all started in the 1980’s when the USDA pyramid went bottom-heavy on grains.
And though healthy fats, like olive oil, coconut oil, flaxseed oil and the like have been exonerated, there is still this heavy emphasis on eating lots of "healthy grains" to get our fiber needs met. This too often translates into consuming copious amounts of "pH disrupting wheat" for the populace at large, and we just keep getting larger and more acidic all the time.
What's your take on the acid/alkaline issue? Are you watching what you eat based on maintaining a healthy pH level?