Inside your brain are two, tiny prehistoric organs (the amygdalae), which I often refer to as your inner fish. The amygdalae, particularly one of them, are responsible for managing your emotions and the flight, fight or freeze syndrome.
When your brain becomes too acidic your amygdalae become hypersensitive and the result is negative changes in body chemistry, mood and energy levels. You will feel more anxious and stressed and begin suffering from stressful symptoms and syndromes, including weight gain. pH imbalance can also affect your weight. The brain knows it needs to remove the acids as far away from the body’s organs as possible in order to protect them. It does this by packing acids away in body fat. Obesity and cellulite are often a symptom of pH imbalance, often referred to as metabolic acidosis.
The importance of pH balance isn’t something you really hear about, unless you travel within certain circles or know someone who has stumbled upon it and decided to tell you about it. However, it’s not something new to scientists or doctors, at all, even though your medical doctor will probably never tell you about it since one of the number one causes of pH imbalance is drugs, both, prescription or over-the-counter drugs.
pH balance was once the method of determining the state of health of immigrants wishing to cross on to American soil. Those with poor pH balance were turned away, because it meant they were at risk for disease.
Healthy pH isn't just an issue for humans. At a pH level of 6.0, crabs die. And, at a pH level of 3.0 in water, fish and all other marine life dies.
Primary Causes of pH Imbalance
Primary causes of poor pH balance (referred to as acidosis) are eating too many acid causing foods, high protein diets, excessive use of alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine, exposure to toxins (chemical, pollution, over-the-counter personal care products), drugs (prescription, over-the-counter and recreational), vigorous exercise, dehydration, poor digestion, poisoning, and negative emotions (ongoing stress and/or anxiety, shock or trauma).
Kidney disease and other chronic diseases can be, both, the cause of acidosis, as well as the result of acidosis. Acidosis, which is too much acid in the blood, increases the chance of disease and the inability to recover.
And, if you have contracted HSV-1 or HSV-2, poor pH balance also causes frequent cold sores and genital herpes breakouts.
The Primary Body Organs Responsible for pH Balance
Proper pH balance is primarily controlled through your kidneys, lungs, skin, and lower intestines. All of these organs help to excrete acid from your body, but when there is too much acid to remove your body has to compromise by storing these acids in your muscle tissues (causing pain), your fat (which causes obesity and cellulite) and, worst of all, your brain (which causes brain fog, at the very least).
Why US Citizens are at High Risk for pH Imbalance
Americans are at high risk for pH imbalance because Americans have the worst diets over any other culture in the world (that is not starving).
Americans eat way too many dead foods (foods that are not whole or fresh) and make up the most obese, depressed, and diseased nation on earth mostly due diet.
Americans also eat excessive amounts of protein, refined flour, sugars and the wrong kinds of fats. These kinds of foods cause an over build-up of acids. Environmental toxins and high stress levels make up the second and third parts of the equation.
The main type of acidosis faced by Americans is Metabolic Acidosis, which is associated with kidney stones, Fibromyalgia, Gout, Osteoporosis, Interstitial Cystitis, Vulvodynia (vaginal tissue problems), loss of muscle mass, Thyroid Disorder, Cystic Fibrosis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, progression of HIV to Aids, some forms of cancer (prostate being one of them) and stunted growth in infants and children.
Metabolic Acidosis also reduces enzyme activity. Enzymes are important little 'factory workers' in the body that can only operate within the very narrow frame that exists between acidosis and alkalosis. When you are enzyme deficient you will suffer from indigestion, gas, bloating, diarrhea and constipation, colitis, and stomach pain, which are symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. This can be relieved by taking a full spectrum digestive enzyme supplement before meals. In fact, if you are over 30 you should probably be supplementing with a digestive enzyme supplement, as well as a probiotic.
Balancing your pH is the single most important thing you can ever do for your health because when your pH is balanced your body will work for you and not against you. In fact, with proper pH you cannot get sick and even cancer can disappear!
Now, it has to be said, that some conditions just may not ever go away. However, there is always the chance they might improve or, at the very least, not get any worse.
Proper pH boosts your entire immune system, which means less time feeling ill and speedier healing to injuries.
Symptoms of pH Imbalance
Beginning Symptoms and Effects of Acidosis (Low pH)
Acne, Agitation, Bloating, Chemical Sensitivities, Cold Hands/Feet, Diarrhea/Constipation, Dizziness, Dry Mouth, Feeling 'Under-the-Weather', Food Sensitivities, Headache, Heartburn, Indigestion, Irregular Heart Beat or Palpitations, Irritability (for no reason), Joint Pain (that roves), Nervousness/Anxiety, Menstrual Cramping, Metallic Taste in Mouth,
Mild Headaches, No or Low Energy, No or Low Sex Drive, Panic Attacks, PMS, Rapid Heart Rate, Restlessness/Hyperactivity, Sore Muscles, Strong (and/or dark) Urine, Sinus Congestion, Morning Sluggishness, Weight Gain, White Coated Tongue, Yellow Urine.
Intermediate Symptoms and Effects of Acidosis (Low pH)
Asthma, Agoraphobia, Bladder Infection, Brain Fog, Bronchitis, Cold Sores, Concentration Issues, Memory Problems, Colitis, Cystitis, Depression, Disturbed Vision, Taste, Hearing or Smell, Ear Aches, Eczema, Endometriosis, Food Allergies, Gastritis, Hair Loss, Hay Fever, HSV (repeated flare-ups after first contracting the virus), Hives, Increased Rate of Aging, Infections (bacterial, fungus or viral), Inflammation, Swelling, Impotence, Insomnia, Numbness, Psoriasis, Sinusitis, Stuttering, Tension & Migraine Headaches, Tingling, Urethritis
Advanced Symptoms and Effects of Acidosis (Low pH)
Crohn's Disease, Diabetes, Gall Stones, Heart Disease, Hodgkin's Disease, Leukemia, Kidney Stones, Myasthenia Gravis, Multiple Sclerosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Sarcoidosis, Scleroderma, Systemic Lupus, Tuberculosis and all forms of Cancer. Many of these are autoimmune disorders. Records show there are over 180 autoimmune disorders. They all fall into this third category.
How to Measure Your pH Levels
Visit your pharmacy and ask for pH test strips. They will cost between $8 and $16. They come with a color chart so that you can match your test strip results against a scale from 1-14, one being the lowest and fourteen the highest.
A test color chart may look like this one, with some having more colors to choose from.
Test strips are little sticks with a special pad at one end you collect urine or saliva or urine on. Some kits read only numbers 5-9 (average range). These should work just fine, unless you cannot find your result color on the color chart. You may just want to get the ‘1-14’ test kit to begin with.
At the far left (Orange), this chart starts with 5.0, ending at the far right with 9.0 (Blue). Your perfect pH color should be close to 7.0, a pretty shade of Green.
There are also test paper rolls (called nitrazine) that are available, but they are harder to find in stores. They also come with their own color charts. You can order them online.
One little point on your test strip may not seem like much of a difference, except that the scale is logarithmic. This means that each step is 10 times more acid, or alkaline, than the last. This means that a pH of 5 is 10 times greater than 6, 100 times greater than 7 and a 1,000 times greater than 8. This is why a seemingly slight change in score can have a tremendous impact on your health.
As I mentioned earlier, we become more acidic as we age, especially after 30 years of age. The lungs and the kidneys become less efficient in carrying out their tasks of removing waste products and toxins mostly due to poor diet.
Healthy blood pH usually reads 7.365 with spinal fluid and saliva reading 7.4. A typical (but not healthy) adult saliva test usually reads about 6.3-6.7 becoming more alkaline as the day wears on (yellow-green on the chart).
pH levels of children are normally around 7.5, which is a darker blue on the chart.
Individuals having terminal cancer can read 4.5, which is bright yellow.
Collecting a pH Sample
When collecting a saliva specimen make sure it has been at least 30 minutes since you have eaten. 2 hours is better.
Swallow a couple of times to clear your mouth. Then, spit into a spoon. Do not place the pH strips in your mouth. They have been chemically prepared.
Dab the padded end of the stick into the saliva for 2 seconds or so and then compare to the color chart for your score.
The best time to check saliva is first thing in the morning, mid-afternoon (at least a half hour after eating) and before bed (at least a half hour after eating). It’s better to wait 2 hours before and after eating.
Checking urine is simple. You can do this as often as you like, but I suggest first thing in the morning, mid-afternoon (perhaps 2 hours after lunch) and before bed (again, 2 hours after eating).
Obviously, the first reading for urine should be done upon waking, but don't catch the first bit of stream. Test mid-stream. Hold the strip under your urine for 2 seconds and then compare to the color chart for your score.
Doing these tests for a period of three to seven days gives you an idea of where you are as far as your pH is concerned and may hold the answer as to why you have been experiencing herpes breakouts.
The lower your pH the harder it is for your cells to utilize the nutrients from the foods you eat. If your tests read an average of 4.5 or less you are strongly acidic and low in ionic calcium. If you consistently score less than 6.8 on urine tests digestive support is necessary in the form of enzymes, supplements and natural foods to encourage proper digestion.
If you have a consistently have low pH saliva reading, but a high urine pH throughout the day it may be that your body is excreting a lot of acid through your urine. However, this should not be a permanent condition. If you consistently read very low or very high, please call your doctor for further tests. It could indicate a serious problem.
The Role Minerals Play in pH Balance
Protein, calcium, phosphorous and other minerals are buffers that bind and neutralize acids in your body.
When there is a high amount of acid in your system these minerals are not available for bone and muscle tissue maintenance and repair. Instead you end up with acidosis (too much acid) or alkalosis (too little acid), which results in emotional and physical symptoms and can cause a herpes breakout.
Your body can get minerals from the foods you eat. However, typical American foods never contain enough Magnesium and, both, Calcium and Magnesium are necessary to balance your pH (as well as a slew of other natural minerals).
I suggest adding seaweed to your diet 3-4 times per week, which contains the minerals your body needs most.
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