Good health depends on the balance of our body’s natural internal chemistry. An important part of that is the balance of our body’s pH.
Just like in the environment, our body’s are forever managing the balance between acidity and alkalinity. Too much of either is not good, but staying in a neutral pH range is ideal.
I find that most of the people I see are too acidic. Acidity can be caused by our nutritional choices, stress, medications or health conditions. In addition, some people are just what I refer to as “acid formers.” Their more susceptible to the build up of acid metabolites in their bodies because of an overproduction, a slower ability to detoxify acids or both.
An acidic body chemistry, otherwise referred to as “terrain,” can lead to:
– Gastrointestinal Issues (e.g. canker sores in the mouth, GERD, IBS, loose stools)
– Poor immune function
– Bad Breath
– Headaches & Migraines
– Muscle and Joint Pain (i.e. acids can promote inflammation)
– Skin issues (e.g. dermatitis, chronic itching, skin infections, rosacea, poor skin integrity)
– Hormonal Issues
– Interstitial cystitis
I have patients test their pH. This is really simple and easy to do. The best way to do this is through urinary pH. Special paper strips that test pH are available. When the paper strip is saturated with a small amount of urine, it will change colour. This colour will correspond with a numerical pH value. This number will indicate how acidic a person is.
I usually recommend patients take 3-4 readings per day, for 3-5 days. This give a good cross-section of values so we can assess how acidic a person is. Acidity can fluctuate through the course of the day, so it’s important to discover a person’s levels relative to the normal ranges. For example, we tend to be more acidic in the early morning and later in the evening (see chart below) and this can be part of the normal fluctuation of pH through the day. However, if a person finds they are getting an acidic value outside the normal range (i.e. normal range = the light blue curve on the graph) more often than not then they have an acidic body chemistry.
Once we assess acidity, I create an individualized plan to help patients neutralize and detoxify acid metabolites. This can be done through a number of different ways, depending on each person’s unique needs.
Nutrition strategies can be helpful in promoting a more alkaline state. For example, the most alkalinizing foods are non-salad green vegetables. There are a variety of natural remedies that also help to neutralize acidity. Furthermore, there are very effective remedies that help facilitate a person’s detoxification of excess acid.
If this is a new concept in health, the best and most fascinating place to start is to test your pH. It’s simple and it can be a really enlightening experience!
I have often seen acidity be an obstacle for many patients in their health. We can take a boat load of herbs, supplements, homeopathics, etc., but if we have a build up of acidity it will block our body’s ability to utilize these therapeutic agents. When we neutralize and detoxify the acids, the body works more efficiently and health issues begin to resolve. If natural remedies are given to speed healing, the body can actually make use of them on a biochemical level without acid metabolites getting in the way.
Believe it or not, the concept of “Terrain” as it relates to the health of the human body is a very historical one, yet it is not given any consideration in modern day conventional medicine. However, the consideration of body ecology, microflora and pH, otherwise known as all things “Terrain,” is the future of medicine. I’d like to think it’s best we all learn about this health information now, so we don’t have to wait for the future of medicine to feel our best and live our best life. After all, the future is now.