In accordance with science, a pH scale is a quantifier having 14 levels on it and anything that falls below 7 is considered acidic while anything that goes upwards of 7 is considered to be alkaline. While if something shows up to be exactly 7 on the pH scale, then it is considered to be neutral i.e. neither acidic nor alkaline, the best example of which can be natural raw water.
When it comes to the human body, overall it should be slightly alkaline with a pH of around 7.4 in the blood. However, acidity and alkalinity can vary in different parts of the body, mostly based on their function. The digestive system stands out when it comes to being highly different from the rest of the organs as it is extremely acidic.
The reasoning behind the digestive system being highly acidic is because it has the gastric acid produced by the lining of the stomach. This gastric acid is crucial as it breaks food down easily, ensuring proper digestion and smooth passage through the digestive tract. It also helps the body to absorb more nutrients from the food we eat. This is why it's important for our body that the stomach is highly acidic.
However, that being said, we need to maintain a balance between acidity and alkalinity. This is because it is usual for the body to get even more acidic than required, which can result in further problems or lead us towards chronic diseases. Before understanding how to maintain this balance, let us first understand how this balance gets disrupted, to begin with.
Why and How Does pH Imbalance Happen in the Body?
Our body’s pH balance, also known as acid-base balance refers to the levels of acid in the blood at which the body can perform to the best of its ability. Although our bodies are built in a way that it naturally tries to maintain this balance, especially through our lungs and kidneys, poor dietary habits, lack of regular exercise, not drinking much water and living in a polluted atmosphere are some of the factors that make it tough for the body to maintain balance.
When we talk about our gut, maintaining a good pH level in it is even more important since the gut is highly acidic in itself already, and any imbalance could lead to multiple gut-related issues such as heartburn, acidity, bloating, constipation, diarrhea and in extreme cases even GERD also known as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. Additionally, the intestines can also get swollen as the body will struggle to eliminate waste, which might lead to even further health issues.
Apart from this, improper pH balance or too much acid in the blood can also steal the electrolytes which are highly charged small particles needed by the body to function and contain key elements such as calcium, magnesium, potassium and sodium. Losing these minerals causes all sorts of problems and subsequent diseases in the body.
Some other problems that might result due to pH imbalance include unintentional weight changes, sleep disturbance, constant fatigue, low energy levels, skin problems like itching and irritation and food intolerances amongst others. Moreover, these problems if unattended could lead to chronic diseases over time, making it extremely important for us to understand and then try to maintain pH balance in the body.
Is Too Much Alkalinity Also Bad?
So far we have discussed how pH imbalance leads to more acidic concentration in the body that can cause various problems. But if the imbalance were to happen in the opposite way and instead of being more acidic, the body becomes more alkaline, then what will happen?
Well, the answer to this is that when there is too much alkaline, known in science by the term alkalosis then also you could face various problems. Although it is rare that alkalosis occurs in a body, but, when it does happen, it could cause issues such as lightheadedness, vomiting, nausea, muscle spasms, difficulty in breathing, and in some extreme cases, it can lead to seizures.
Alkalosis can happen when the body loses a lot of acid, which can generally be due to vomiting or diarrhea. The body also tends to lose a lot of fluid and electrolytes due to this, and it eventually affects the kidneys, reducing their ability to maintain a healthy pH balance. Just like too much acid in the body can be dangerous, similarly, if the body becomes too alkalinized then it too creates various issues.
How Can You Know if the pH is Imbalanced in Your Body?
If you are experiencing symptoms of a pH imbalance, then you can go for a pH test to be sure. To do a pH test, you will be required to share a sample of your urine or saliva.
Usually, pH strips are used and the urine or saliva sample is put on these to check the pH level. If a urine sample is used, then you should ensure that the sample is from your first bladder movement after you wake up in the morning.
Since pH balance can vary throughout the day and might change after you consume food or water, it is important to sample from an empty stomach to get the most accurate reading or indication. For your pH balance to be perfect, your pH level in the morning should be between 6-6.5.
Similarly, a saliva sample for the pH test should be collected in the morning before brushing. A pH level between 7-7.4 is considered to be well balanced
What Can You Do to Maintain a Healthy pH Balance in Your Body?
We have now seen how to maintain a pH balance in the body is of paramount importance. Not only does it help in eliminating various problems, but it also protects you from various chronic diseases and helps you stay healthy.
Many factors affect the pH balance in the human body, including the food you eat, the amount of water you drink, how much exercise and sleep you get and many more. Most of us struggle to maintain this balance and look for ways to help in having a healthy pH level.
Well, you don’t have to look any further as we will be discussing some of the most effective ways through which you can maintain a healthy pH balance. Read along to find out.
Try an Alkaline Diet
An alkaline diet refers to a diet plan focused on eating healthy and natural food including fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and even seaweed. It also stresses cutting down on highly acidic food such as junk food, processed food, packaged food, alcoholic drinks and tobacco.
The idea behind this diet plan is to encourage healthy eating habits that include natural food which promotes good health, keeps diseases away and maintains the pH balance in the body. The modern generation tends to eat a highly acidic diet consisting of processed, packaged and junk food that causes the pH balance in the body to go haywire and lead to various disorders and diseases. But an alkaline diet is aimed at changing these poor dietary habits.
Switching to an alkaline diet plan can seem to be extremely challenging in the beginning. But you can use these 5 hacks to start an alkaline diet right away. Also, you can refer to this 7-day alkaline diet plan to have a complete guide on what and when to eat, that will make it easier for you to adapt and move towards living a healthy life in the future.
Drink Alkaline Water
Alkaline water is different from your regular water as it is slightly more alkaline, above 7 on the pH scale.However, this slightly extra alkalinity of water is extremely helpful in maintaining the pH balance in the body and removing gut issues like bloating, acidity, constipation, heartburn and others.
On top of this, alkaline water is more easily absorbed by the cells in the body and it keeps them hydrated for longer, eventually making you feel more energetic throughout the day.
DYLN Bottle comes with a VitaBead Diffuser installed at its bottom that converts regular water into alkaline water within minutes. It comes in various sizes and colors and you can carry it anywhere too. This ensures that you drink alkaline water throughout the day and achieve optimal pH balance in your body.
Exercise and Rest
If you want to maintain a perfect pH balance, then you need to avoid stress at all costs. Stress is known to have an acidic effect on the body that can further lead to heavy disruption in the pH balance. It releases inflammatory chemicals as well as hormones that are a part of a response from your immune system.
This eventually leads to problems such as headaches, high blood pressure and increased heart rate.
To control stress, you should exercise daily. Not only will it divert your mind, but it will also make you feel better and relaxed. You can also check out these breathing exercises to keep you calm and grounded.
Also, you should take proper rest and sleep for at least 8 hours each day. If you are not getting enough sleep, then drinking water can help. Apart from these tips, you should try to indulge in activities that you love such as reading books, journaling, playing games, or spending time with your loved ones which should allow you to stay stress-free and hence maintain perfect pH balance for longer periods.
Having a proper pH balance is crucial for our body to function normally, staying devoid of health issues, problems and chronic diseases. But our poor dietary habits and lifestyle choices make it tough to maintain this balance, and either we are too acidic or too alkaline, both of which are not good as they cause various problems and do not allow us to feel well and healthy.
By adapting your lifestyle and making a few changes like the ones discussed above, you can easily maintain the balance of acidity and alkalinity in your body. A body with perfect pH balance will eventually mean that you live a healthy and happy life and keep the diseases and suffering at bay.