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the pH scale

Remember back in high school chemistry when you learned about our acid/alkaline balance, also referred to as the body’s pH (“potential Hydrogen” or “powers of Hydrogen”)?   Our pH is measured on a scale from 0 to 14, with around 7.35 being neutral (normal). The pH numbers below 7.35 are acidic (with 0 being the most acidic) and the numbers above 7.35 are alkaline (with 14 being the most alkaline).

Hydrogen is both a proton and an electron. If the electron is stripped off, then the resulting positive ion is a proton. Without going into all the details about protons (“+” charge) and electrons (“-” charge), it’s important to note that alkaline substances (also called “bases”) are proton “acceptors” while acids are proton “donors.”  What does that mean to someone who isn’t a doctor? Let me simplify it for you. Since bases have a higher pH, they have a greater potential to absorb hydrogen ions and vice versa for acids.

In chemistry, we know that water (H2O) decomposes into hydrogen ions (H+) and hydroxyl ions (OH-). When a solution contains more hydrogen ions than hydroxyl ions, then it is said to be acid. When it contains more hydroxyl ions than hydrogen ions, then it is said to be alkaline. As you may have guessed, a pH of 7.35 is neutral because it contains equal amounts of hydrogen ions and hydroxyl ions.

Over 70% of our bodies are water. When cells create energy via aerobic respiration, they burn oxygen and glucose.  I don’t want to get overly scientific here, but the fact is that in order to create energy, the body also requires massive amounts of hydrogen. As a matter of fact, each day your body uses about ½ pound of pure hydrogen.  Even our DNA is held together by hydrogen bonds.  And since the pH of bases is higher, they have a greater potential to absorb hydrogen, which results in more oxygen delivered to the cells.

The hydrogen ion concentration varies over 14 powers of 10, thus a change of one pH unit changes the hydrogen ion concentration by a factor of 10. The pH scale is a common logarithmic scale.  For those of you who never liked math, what this means is that a substance which has a pH of 5.2 is 10 times more acidic than a substance with a pH of 6.2, while it is 100 (102) times more acidic than a substance with a pH of 7.2, and it is 1,000 (103) times more acidic than a substance with a pH of 8.2, etc…

Our blood must always maintain a pH of approximately 7.35 so that it can continue to transport oxygen.  Thus, God has made our bodies resilient with the ability to self-correct in the event of an imbalanced pH level through a mechanism called the buffer system. In chemistry, a buffer is a substance which neutralizes acids, thus keeping the pH of a solution relatively constant despite the addition of considerable amounts of acids or bases.  However, due to our poor diet of junk foods, fast foods, processed foods, and sodas, most of us are putting our bodies through “the ringer” in order to maintain the proper pH in our blood.  Although our bodies typically maintain alkaline reserves which are utilized to buffer acids in these types of situations, it is safe to say that many of us have depleted our reserves.

When our buffering system reaches overload and we are depleted of reserves, the excess acids are dumped into the tissues.  As more and more acid is accumulated, our tissues begin to deteriorate.  The acid wastes begin to oxidize (“rust”) the veins and arteries and begin to destroy cell walls and even entire organs. Having an acidic pH is like driving your car with the “check engine” light on. It’s a sign that something is wrong with the engine; and if we don’t get it fixed, then eventually the car will break down.

According to Keiichi Morishita in his book, Hidden Truth of Cancer, as blood starts to become acidic, the body deposits acidic substances into cells to get them out of the blood. This allows the blood to remain slightly alkaline. However, it causes the cells to become acidic and toxic.  Over time, many of these cells increase in acidity and some die. However, some of these acidified cells adapt to the new environment. In other words, instead of dying (as normal cells do in an acidic environment) some cells survive by becoming abnormal cells. These abnormal cells are called “malignant” cells, and they do not correspond with brain function or with our own DNA memory code. Therefore, malignant cells grow indefinitely and without order. This is cancer.

Putting too much acid in your body is like putting poison in your fish tank.  Several years ago, we purchased a fish tank and a couple of goldfish for our children.  After killing both goldfish, we quickly learned that the key factor in keeping fish alive is the condition of the water.  If their water isn’t just right, then they quickly die.  We also learned that you can kill a fish rather quickly if you feed it the wrong foods!  Now, compare this to the condition of our internal “fish tank.” Many of us are filling our fish tanks with chemicals, toxins, and the wrong foods which lower our pH balance, and an acidic pH results in oxygen deprivation at the cellular level.

So, what other things can we do to keep our tissue pH in the proper range? The easiest thing is to eat mostly alkaline foods.  The general rule of thumb is to eat 20% acid foods and 80% alkaline foods.  Fresh fruit juice also supplies your body with a plethora of alkaline substances. You can also take supplements, such as potassium, cesium, magnesium, calcium, and rubidium, which are all highly alkaline.

Some excellent alkaline-forming foods are as follows: most raw vegetables and fruits, figs, lima beans, olive oil, honey, molasses, apple cider vinegar, miso, tempeh, raw milk, raw cheese, stevia, green tea, most herbs, sprouted grains, sprouts, wheatgrass, and barley grass. Foods such as yogurt, kefir, and butter are basically neutral. Several acid-forming foods are as follows: sodas, coffee, alcohol, chocolate, tobacco, aspartame, meats, oysters, fish, eggs, chicken, pasteurized milk, processed grains, sugar, peanut butter, beans, and pastas.

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8 Responses to “the pH scale”

  1. Cristian says:

    How can we measure our body pH? Is there any way to do it trough some blood tests or similar?

    • Jay Budington says:

      I requested a pH test on my blood from my Doctor during my last set of blood tests. They said they did not have a way to test blood pH. I found that very strange as it is a/the method to diagnose lactic acidosis.

      Most home pH tests (strips) are for saliva and urine not blood. I do not consider this informative as they are seconday fluids and urine is waste.

      What I did to test my blood pH was to request an extra blood sample to take home.

      I used a fairly inexpensive digital calabratable pH meter that is used to test water pH. It first read 6.93 and slowly rose to 7.14 and stopped, somewhat acidic.

      Normal healty blood should be between 7.35-7.45

      Another reason to quit smoking (tobacco)as tobacco pH is between 4.5-6.0 and the blood in the lungs absorbs this acid and lowers the overall blood pH.

      • charles says:

        I Was A Respiratory Therapist For 13 Years And There Is A Way To Test Blood
        PH. The Test Is Called An ABG Which Stands For ARTERIAL BLOOD GAS Its Commonly Administered To Patients With Lung Diseases Such As Asthma Emphysema
        And COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary
        Disease). The Test Measures Oxygen And Carbon Dioxide Levels In The Blood As Well As The PH Of The Blood. Its A Routine Test That All Doctors Should Be Familiar With

      • Kunkru says:

        With a “pH indicator paper” can be measured in a uncomplicated way the pH (acid-base value) of your urine. A permanent acidification of our metabolism is now a widespread phenomenon and may affect the well-being. Measure for 9 days, morning and evening urine pH and record this data into a acid-base balance control plan.
        Measurement Method:
        • First day urine should have a pH of 6.2 to 6.8
        • Last day urine should have a pH of 6.8 to 7.4
        Generally, the morning urine should be in the acid range, because during the night through the kidneys the body is deprived of the acid. During the day, you could raise the pH by basic food …

  2. Cristian says:

    And another question. By drinking lemonade, made from about half litter of lemon fresh, how we can consider, like going to alkalinity or to acidity because of citric acid?

    Thanks.

    • sridevi says:

      Cristian,

      The lemon is considered alkaline though it is fully ascorbic acid because they are absorbed alkaline….the end product(alkaline ash) they produce is rich in minerals.Early morning warm lemon juice with honey and Himalayan pink salt can boost your alkaline stores.

      Thanks
      shri

  3. Nick says:

    Alcohol is acidic but fruit juice is alkaline forming. If I drink a shot of rum in an 8oz glass of pineapple juice, am I breaking even here? How much does a single lime wedge help in beer (Corona, Dos XX, etc)?

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