Have you been feeling too tired lately? Are you concerned about the unexplained joint and muscle aches? Suffering from a painful acid reflux? Did your doctor just put you through costly diagnostic evaluations? It is not surprising. Investigating your body’s pH levels may not be on your doctor’s radar.
But the fact is, out of range pH values can have cumulative effects on your health. A pH value provides the measure of acidity or alkalinity and is expressed on a scale of 0 to 14. The human body has varying pH levels; every organ requires a different pH value to perform its specific function.
Health experts believe that a well-balanced pH balance is important for the body to perform at its optimal best. Important functions – such as digestion and immunity – depend on a proper acid-alkaline balance in our body. In fact, experts say that disease doesn’t get a chance to thrive in a body whose pH balance is in order. Now, that’s saying a lot considering many of us don’t even think about this important aspect, let alone address it.
Too much acidity in the human body – a condition called acidosis – leads to a range of health problems. Acidosis damages organs, promotes an environment that is conducive to the growth of unhealthy organisms and impacts the immune system.
What causes pH imbalance?
Our body makes use of minerals – magnesium, calcium, potassium and sodium – to counter excess acidity. But where is this excess acidity coming from?
Poor diet and stress are ‘number one’ contributors toward fostering acidity in the body. Other factors – such as sedentary lifestyle, excessive use of antibiotics, drugs and alcohol, smoking, kidney disease, and exposure to environmental toxins – are all responsible for disturbing the pH balance.
In its attempt to keep an equilibrium, the body starts to raid other sites where these minerals are abundant; for example, bones, muscles and other vital organs – eventually causing the mineral pools to run dangerously low. In a nutshell, while the body can adjust its pH levels to some extent; it comes at a price resulting in additional health problems.
The resulting mineral loss, if continued, interferes with the absorption of other nutrients, impacts the cell’s ability to carry out critical bio-chemical processes and allows toxins and metabolic wastes to accumulate in the body. Too much acidity interferes with the working of our hormones too. Finally, this environment leads to all sorts of diseases and disorder in the body.
The good news is our body sends out loud and clear signals if the acid-alkaline balance goes for a toss; and despite this, most healthcare professionals tend to misdiagnose or even dismiss the common signs of poor pH balance.
pH out of balance? Signs include:
- Fatigue and weakness
- Water retention
- Low blood pressure
- Bad Breath
- Foul smelling stools
- Low body temperature
- Difficulty in breathing
- Dry skin
- Bumps on the tongue
- Muscle cramps and joint aches
- Brittle nails
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Frequent sighing
- Falling sick frequently; frequent colds and flu symptoms
- Sensitivity to vinegar and acidic fruits
Out of whack pH is the underlying cause of many diseases – including osteoporosis, arthritis, gastritis, diabetes, and even cancer. And acidic body is far more susceptible to infectious diseases and inflammation.
The truth is conventional medicine ignores the significance of a proper pH balance. Not surprisingly and very unfortunately, these signs are often construed as a health condition that may not even be there – adding to escalating healthcare costs and perhaps even the wrong treatment; that only serves to compound the issue.
The easier and more effective solution will be to bring the acidity down. How to get started? Stay tuned for our next article in this series.
- James L. Lewis, III, MD. Acidosis. Merck Manual. Consumer Version.
- Suzanne Allen, Kristeen Cherney and Elizabeth Boskey. Acidosis. Healthline. 2015
- Gaw A, Murphy MJ, Srivastava R, Cowan RA, O’Reilly DS. Acid-base disorders. Gaw A, Murphy MJ, Srivastava R, Cowan RA, O’Reilly DS, eds. Clinical Biochemistry: An Illustrated Colour Text. 5th ed. Philadelphia: PA: Elsevier; 2013:chap 24.