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Acidity and your Health
|Posted on 17 February, 2014 at 15:32|
Our body is unique as it has the ability to balance itself. Anyone who wants to maintain optimal health must focus on the body’s ACID-BASE BALANCE. Knowing what’s happening inside our body will give clarity as to why we need to watch what we eat, why we are suffering at present and why a Homeopathic approach is best.
Acid-base balance refers to having no excess acids or bases and blood is in acid-base balance at an alkaline pH. The body organs involved in the acid-base balance are our lungs, kidneys, connective tissue, bones, and stomach. Together with our body secretions and fluids, each have their respective pH levels. When our breathing is inadequate, carbon dioxide (respiratory acid) accumulates producing acid pH. At lowered pH, oxygen is much more able to dissociate from hemoglobin thus entering the tissue. At the lung, pH is more alkaline therefore hemoglobin binds oxygen more tightly for transport into the body. Without this process working effectively our cells would starved of oxygen and we would die. When normal metabolism is impaired, the body produces too much acid. - e.g., poor blood supply stops oxidative metabolism and lactic acid forms. This acid is not respiratory so, by definition, it is "metabolic acid." If severe, the patient may be in shock and require treatment, possibly by neutralizing this excess acid with bicarbonate, possibly by allowing time for excretion/metabolism. Blood pH is so important that it indirectly influences systems throughout the body when acidity gets too high. Blood pH - 7.38 - 7.42. A person can only survive for hours if their blood pH is too low or too high. The emergency is called metabolic acidosis or metabolic alkalosis. Causes of metabolic acidosis include ketoacidosis (seen in untreated diabetes) and renal failure. Causes of metabolic alkalosis include excessive vomiting (through loss of hydrochloric acid) or hypokalemia (low potassium in blood).
The body is designed to cope with huge amount of acids coming into the system using the bicarbonate buffer system. Sources of acids in the body are stress, decreased alkaline substances in the diet, increased acids in the diet, toxins, medications, chronic illness (#1 source) and dysbiosis (imbalance of bacteria) in the gut. Disruption in the bacterial flora and inflammation can cause “leaky gut” which eventually cause allergies, food intolerances and eczema. High sources of acids in our diet comes from consumption of animal proteins which include milk, cheese, meat, refined sugars and grains (rice and wheat flour). Foods which cause high stress to the body like coffee are also acidifying due to activation of the stress pathways. Treatment of acidity should be considered in most digestive disorders like IBS, Crohn’s disease, colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, constipation, bloating and food intolerances.
Appearance of cellulites happens when the connective tissue becomes rigid as it gets overloaded with acids and the fat cells bulge out giving the characteristic dimples. Treatment by removing acids from connective tissue and improving the lymphatic flow with massage and exercise will help.
Emotional and psychological stress causes secretion of various hormones (adrenaline, nor-adrenaline, cortisol) which leads to metabolic process alterations whose end products are acids. Our kidneys excrete both bicarbonates and hydrogen ions. If blood is acidic, the kidney resorbs more bicarbonate making urine more acidic. If there are sufficient buffers, excess bicarbonate is excreted into the urine which causes the urine to be alkaline.
Cancer cells survives only in acidic and anaerobic environment. Transcription factor p53 which is responsible for programmed cell death does not function in pH less than pH6.4 An acidic matrix aids in metastasis and an acidic pH make cells more susceptible to mutations. When matrix full of acids, cells are more likely to switch to anaerobic respiration (due to lack of oxygen) which favours the tumours. Tumours additional blood flow is to get additional glucose, not oxygen. Acidity may lead to calcium loss which encourage migration of malignant cells through the walls of the blood vessels due to membrane instability.
Our bone is a source of bicarbonate and phosphate buffers. If pH of tissue is acidic, osteoclasts (breakdown bones) are activated and osteoblasts (build up bones) are inhibited. Acidic tissue is a sign that there is a chronic problem with excess acids in the body. pH directly affects bone metabolism so that the body systems stay in acid-bas balance. The body puts more importance in regulating the blood pH than on structural integrity of bones. With every loss of buffer, minerals such as calcium are also lost and excreted into the urine making us more susceptible to osteoporosis.When there is chronic acidity and the buffer system is taxed, the body will store acids in the matrix which may impair its ability to function resulting to inability of nutrients, hormones, oxygen and cell wastes to pass through the matrix. This will result to nerve firing inappropriately or lack of firing (nerve depolarization). Likewise, it will result to disruption in lymphatic system due to increase water in the connective tissue matrix decreasing lymphatic flow.
Osteoporosis is more a deficiency of alkaline substances, not just calcium. Commonly, the patient will be prescribed calcium supplements and dietary intake including milk and cheeses which are the most acidifying foods a person can consume. There is little evidence on epidemiological basis that shows consuming dairy products has any benefit on bone fracture and osteoporosis (pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/115/3/736.full.pdf+html) and according to Alkaline-Acid Theory, consuming highly acidifying dairy products without corresponding increase in alkaline-rich vegetables have the opposite effect on bones.
In osteoarthritis, acidosis in the extracellular matrix can induce chondrocyte apoptosis which leads to reduce cartilage formation and shift towards degeneration.
Detoxification is a great way for better health but is only possible with balanced pH because if the body is acidic there will be decrease excretion of toxins and toxins are bound more strongly to the cell membrane making them harder to be remove.
Homeopathy’s holistic approach will help greatly with disorders of acid-base balance. It was found out that most people eating and supplementing adequately are still acidic because of stress brought by mental and emotional issues. Homeopathic remedy personally prescribed to the individual will help overcome his mental and emotional stresses together with his physical problems.