The alkaline diet is popular these days because of the belief that the shift in our standard diet towards an acid-producing one is the cause of a number of chronic diseases. The diet emphasizes a shift towards consuming vegetables, fresh fruit, roots, nuts (including coconut oil) and legumes to maintain the normal pH of our blood.
Understanding the Alkaline Diet's Stated Effects on the pH level in our Body
The normal pH of our body is slightly alkaline, between 7.35 and 7.45. When the blood’s pH is within the normal range, all our bodily system functions easily. When a shift occurs towards an acidic range occurs, either by stress, trauma or dietary intake, alkaline dieters believe our body system works doubly hard to restore our blood’s pH levels to normal.
How an Alkaline Diet Works
Consuming foods that are alkaline-forming – meaning, once digested by the body, its residues or the ones released into the blood are alkaline – can help the body maintain its normal blood pH.
Choosing Alkaline Foods
It’s actually quite easy to know which are alkaline-forming foods. Those foods that are not processed and closest to nature are most likely alkaline-forming. Most fresh fruits and vegetables are excellent choices. Red meat is not a good choice, but you can add plenty of protein to your meals by using soy products, delicious beans, legumes, and nuts such as almonds. You should eliminate unhealthy fats from your diet, but you can use good fats like coconut oil. Here is a list of acid and alkaline forming foods.
A good rule of thumb is to replace highly acid-forming foods with less acid-forming ones. It is not advisable to cut out all acid-forming foods in the diet as protein sources are all acid formers, but in varying degrees. The key here is to choose the lesser acid-former. For example, white rice and bread are very acidic. But brown rice and rye bread is less acidic than white carbohydrates.
Using Coconut Oil in an Alkaline Diet
Among all the oils listed in this table, only coconut oil is considered to be alkaline-forming. Experts recommend using raw, virgin coconut oil as a supplement, leaving out other vegetable oils that are chemically processed.