On my quest for witty topic sentences and references to various other diets, I came across this site (a list of every diet ever) as a great example of how people are extremely interested in new ways to lose those pounds and stay healthy, but the common principles in the diets that work are always the same. If you're looking for the Alkaline Diet on that site, it's called "The pH Miracle Diet" based on Dr. Robert Young's and his wife's book The pH Miracle.

This probably isn't the first time in your life that you've been told to eat your vegetables, so I'll be sure to explain the reasons why it matters.

What makes a food alkaline?
The answer might not be what you expect. It turns out that many foods that would intuitively seem acidic, are in fact alkaline when digested, and the same goes for the reverse. For example, lemons, limes, and tomatoes are all alkaline when digested in your body. But that doesn't make sense! I'll explain. Citric acid is a "weak" acid, meaning once it's done it's job in providing energy in metabolism it's eliminated easily via sweat and respiration. It is alkaline forming in that it stimulates the formation of calcium carbonate in the body. Calcium carbonate then neutralizes the "strong" acids in the body, acids that can only be gotten rid of through urination, including uric acid which is the end result of protein metabolism. In fruits such as lemons, the mineral content is also taken into consideration, and the lemon's alkaline minerals are many: calcium, magnesium, potassium, and selenium. So after the citric acid has done it's job and is easily eliminated, one is left with a very alkaline "ash" or end product from the fruit.

Got all that? Don't worry, nobody expects you to do a chemical analysis on everything you eat. Not only have people done that for you, but most of them are "no brainers" anyways. See the chart below:

So there you have it, now you just have to be 100% disciplined: drink plenty of water, avoid sugar, coffee, alcohol, cigarettes, meats, and dairy products and limit your sugary fruit intake. It's the easiest diet ever! Okay, you caught me fibbing again. There is still hope. I'll break it down for you into simple steps:

  • Drink a TON of water: Minimum should be half your body weight in ounces e.g. if you weigh 200 lbs, you need about 100 ounces of water per day (about 3/4 of a gallon). I do at least double that and couldn't feel better. There are 4 ways your body can get rid of acid: Urination, Defecation, Sweat, and Breathing. These all require a large amount of water in order to work properly. In addition, you will tend to lose some water weight when you get hydrated because your body turn off "dehydration mode" and stop storing extra water in your cells (making you look fat).
  • Eat vegetables with every meal: The goal here is to get the veggies in, then do whatever you want after that. Your body can handle chocolate cake when it follows a giant salad for dinner, but the snowball effect of resource depletion begins to occur when you have a hamburger for dinner and follow it up with desert. The goal is ultimately to have somewhere between 70-80% of your foods and drinks be alkaline, because it requires 4 parts alkaline to equal one part acid in your body. 
  • Drink green drinks: This one might be new to you, but it's catching on fast. It's hard to get enough veggies every day, and we're American. We like quick fixes, powders, and pills. Fortunately, there are a number of companies selling green drink powders now, that actually work incredibly well. Typically, they consist of a large number of vegetable, grass and herb ingredients as well as a smaller number of fruits. They are juiced or finely ground, then dehydrated and made into a powder that you can mix with water. There are a lot of brands to choose from and they all work, but some better than others. My favorite tasting green drink is Delicious Greens 8000 and it's also one of the cheapest (due to the fact it was sold on infomercials and sells a huge volume, not because the ingredients are no good). It's a lot sweeter than the others due to the Stevia content, but it's great for mixing in smoothies or directly in water. The highest quality green powder I have found is made by Vibrant Health and is only slightly more expensive, but has a much more grassy taste. You will get a noticeable healthy energy boost after drinking one of these. Another option if you're totally gung-ho is to make your own green drinks in a blender. Spinach, kale, cucumbers, ginger root and most leafy greens will generally pulverize into a liquid without much trouble, If you have the financial means, I highly recommend a Vitamix blender, but for some people that might mean they're late on their car payment. Blendtec makes a slightly cheaper and functionally equivalent model as an alternative. If you have to choose between blender or juicer go with a blender, because it keeps the fiber to slow digestion and reduce glucose spikes in your bloodstream. 
  • Optional: Do a cleanse: This one is not for everyone, but you won't believe the benefits if you can stick it out. The process is simple, go on a liquid diet drinking only green drinks and water for 3-7 days. This will give your body a very well deserved break, and allow it to replenish all of it's vitamin and mineral reserves. It's called a cleanse for a reason though. Remember the 4 ways your body can get rid of acid? Well expect Urination, Defecation, Breathing, and Sweating to all happen quite a bit. Usually somewhere around day 2.5 or 3 you might get a headache, diarrhea, or even throw up in some cases, as well as breaking into a cold sweat or getting light headed. This is your body saying "Okay.....I'm pretty convinced you are going to stop putting acid into me and I'm all replenished, so I'm gonna start working on the stuff I stored away." The good news is that you've made it over the hill at that point. Generally a few hours later you will feel better than ever and that feeling will stick with you. 

Do these things and you can expect to see very effective weight loss (that stays off), acne will disappear, blood pressure will level out, cholesterol will correct itself, acid re-flux and heartburn go away, and virtually all diseases will die (or never develop) in an alkaline environment. 

Hope you enjoyed the post! I will answer questions in the comments section if anyone has any. And if you are buying the products recommended, I would appreciate you using the links on this site because Amazon will pay me a small commission without increasing your price (plus they are the cheapest place to buy them).
10/10/2012 04:26:00 am

Great to see links for future purchases.

Hayden Watkins
10/11/2012 04:14:32 am

Yeah, the links weren't working when I first posted it, but they do now. You can actually use them to buy anything, not just the products recommended and amazon still pays the commission :-)


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