Category Archives: Rants and Cravings

Anatomy of a Protein Shake

Happy New Year!  It’s that time again, when we set our resolutions for the year ahead.  For most of us, that list includes a health-related goal, such as losing weight, getting back in the gym, fitting back in our “skinny” jeans, etc.  Even if you don’t have weight to lose, you may just be ready to cleanse from all the heavy holiday eating.  A great way to detox, shed pounds and feel better all around is starting the day off with a protein shake.

A new year is a great time to reset your health!

A new year is a great time to reset your health!

When you hear the words “protein shake,” you may picture the big bulky man at the gym who wears MC hammer pants and a big support belt as he strains to bench hundreds of pounds.  But protein shakes aren’t just for weight lifters and those trying to bulk up.  They make a very healthy meal replacement and are a convenient way to pack a lot of nutritional punch.  If you’ve always wanted to try a protein shake, but you feel overwhelmed by all the options out there, this blog post is here to help!

Protein Shakes to Avoid

When it comes to selecting a high-quality shake, the first step is knowing what ingredients to stay away from.  Just because it’s sold at your local health food store, GNC or gym, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good for you.  Avoid shakes that contain the following ingredients:

  • Artificial Sweeteners, Colors and Preservatives – Stay away from dyes, MSG and other additives.   If you see the words “aspartame,” “high fructose corn syrup,” or sucralose on the label, put it down!  Artificial sweeteners are so harmful to your health, and they can spike your blood sugar worse than regular sugar does.  
  • Hydrogenated Oils – Not all shakes contain oils, but there are a few out there that contain soybean oil and other hydrogenated oils that are harmful to your heart.
  • Soy Protein– Many people who are dairy sensitive use soy protein shakes thinking they are a healthier option, but most soy protein is highly processed, containing MSG, phyto-estrogens and other unhealthy ingredients.  Here is some more in-depth information about the dangers of processed soy.
  • Synthetic Vitamins and Minerals – You know all those words that you can’t pronounce on the back of supplement labels?  Well your body has a hard time recognizing them too!  In order to be most efficiently utilized by the body, most of the ingredients in your shake should come from the ground…not the lab!

I won’t name any names, but here is the list of ingredients in a very popular protein shake sold in gyms, GNCs and grocery stores everywhere.  See if you can pick out all the harmful ingredients.

micellar alpha and beta caseins and ceseinates, whey concentrates rich in alpha-lactalbumin, whey isolates, whey peptides, colostrum extract, l-glutamine, taurine, lactoferrin), leanlipids (trans fat free lipic complex consisiting of canola oil, sunflower and/or safflower oil, mct’s, l-carnitine), fructose, cocoa powder maltodextin, cytovite 1 (vitamin and mineral premix consisting of vitamin A acetate, cholecalciferol, d-alpha-tocopherol acetate, ascorbic acid, folate, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, niacinamide, pyridoxine hcl, cyanocobalamin, biotin, pantothenic acid, di-calcium phosphate, potassium iodide, potassium chloride, ferrous fumerate, magnesium oxide, copper gluconate, zinc oxide, chromium nicotinate), GCC (proprietary endogenous creatine precursor consisiting of glycocyamine, betaine anhydrous), natural and artificial flavors, acesulfame potassium, sucralose, soy lecithin.

What to Look for in a Protein Shake

Now that you know what to stay away from, here is a list of acceptable protein shake ingredients:

  • High-Quality Protein Source – The main ingredient should be non-denatured whey, brown rice, pea or hemp protein.  A good option should have at least 17 grams of protein per serving. 
  • Natural Sweeteners –  Select a shake that is sweetened with natural ingredients such as stevia, organic coconut palm sugar, evaporated cane juice, cocoa powder, natural vanilla, etc.  Many high-quality product lines are removing fructose, or fruit sugar, from their protein shakes to make them a better low-glycemic option for those with diabetes and other blood sugar issues.   All the protein shakes at Longevity have less than 9 grams of sugar per serving!
  • Beneficial Fat – If your shake contains oil, it should come from organic coconut oil or another stable fatty acid.
  • Whole Food Ingredients – Some of my favorite shakes contain extra antioxidants, vitamins and minerals  and anti-inflammatory ingredients.  Ideally these ingredients should come from organic fruits and vegetables and other whole food and plant sources.
  • Value-Add Ingredients – Many high-quality shakes contain extra amino acids, digestive enzymes and antioxidants.  To me this is an added bonus and it means I have less pills to swallow!

How to Make a Protein Shake

I like to bulk up my protein shake so that it’s nice and filling and holds me over until lunch.  I put a serving of protein (usually two scoops), a cup of frozen berries and about 8 oz of water into the blender.   I also add a beneficial fat (flax seeds or oil, coconut oil), D3 liquid, and something green (a greens powder or chlorophyll liquid).  You might want to use almond milk or coconut milk if you like your protein shake on the creamier side.  Make it your own so that you’ll look forward to having it for breakfast every day!   Protein shakes take about 3 minutes to prepare, and you can drink them on the go.  They are also a great breakfast option for children, especially for picky eaters who aren’t as interested in protein and vegetables.

This whey protein contains all the amino acids and a blend of organic fruits and greens, making it perfect for children who are picky eaters.

This whey protein contains all the amino acids and a blend of organic fruits and greens, making it perfect for children who are picky eaters.

Young or old, we all need protein in the morning.  Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day, and if you stick to no other resolutions this year, you should make sure you and your family start the day with a high-protein meal.  Try a healthy protein shake in the morning, and I bet you’ll notice you have better energy, focus and mood all day.  I tend to crave less sugar and starchy carbohydrates on my shake days.

opticleanse-ghi-vanillawm

One of my favorite shake brands is the OptiCleanse GHI. This brown-rice protein is gluten, dairy and soy free, and it contains ingredients that mend the gut, support the liver and clear inflammation.

Longevity has several high-quality protein shakes in our walk-in pharmacy, and knowledgeable staff members that can help you find the best one for you.  We each have our own favorite brands we can recommend!  Every shake we carry is gluten-free, and we have both vegan and non-denatured whey options.  We also carry shakes that help mend the gastrointestinal tract, balance hormones and cater to those with blood sugar imbalances.  All our shakes are 15% off in the month of January, just in time to help you jump-start your New Year’s resolutions.  We’re also discounting our healthy oils, hemp hearts, greens powders and chlorophyll liquid, all wonderful additions to your morning shake.

Here’s to a happy and healthy 2013!

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Eating with the Seasons: Autumn

We’re experiencing the first hint of fall weather here in Atlanta, and I’m as giddy as a school girl!  I love everything about fall, from hot drinks to chilly nights to the smell of pumpkin in the air, and it’s so nice to get a break after months of oppressive Atlanta heat.  Whenever the weather changes, I start thinking about how I can incorporate seasonal produce into my cooking.  Cooler temperatures mean we can look forward to curling up to some good old comfort food!

It’s really important to think seasonally when it comes to selecting your produce at the grocery store .  You’ll get better freshness and flavor, and it will be more affordable.  So literally, you’ll get the most nutritional bang for your buck!

This may sound like a simple enough concept, but today it’s so easy for us to forget about seasons when we eat.  Modern food processing and worldwide distribution make most fruits and vegetables available year-round, and grocery store produce sections look much the same in February as they do in August.  We also tend to be creatures of habit, purchasing the exact same items every week and eating the same foods every day.  Not only does this make life boring, but it keeps us from getting the variety and nutrition our body needs.

So in the coming weeks, build your meals around all things autumn!  Turn toward more warming root vegetables, like sweet potatoes, carrots and squash.  Incorporate fresh pears, apples and figs into your salads and desserts.  Also emphasize the more warming spices and seasonings including sage, ginger, peppercorns, and mustard seeds.

Enjoy these colorful fall veggies as often as you can this fall!

Here are a few fall recipes from Cooking Light Magazine to help inspire you!

Also, check out my recipes for Sweet Potato Chili, Autumn Burst Salad, Roasted Pears with Herbed Goat Cheese, Pumpkin Raisin Bars, Walnicot Chicken Delight, Beet SaladItalian Butter Bean Soup and Apricot and Mushroom Rice Pilaf.

I hope you’re getting into the fall spirit like I am.  Lots of seasonal recipes to come in the coming weeks!

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Get Your Drink On: Tips for Staying Hydrated This Summer

I’ve written about the importance of staying hydrated on numerous occasions throughout the life of this blog.  As Patient Coordinator at Longevity Health Center, I also end up talking about it with every patient that walks through our doors.  Some days I feel like a broken record!

But even though we’ve learned about the importance of hydration since we were in elementary school, most people simply don’t get enough water on a daily basis.  They fill up on coffee, juices, soft drinks and other diuretics, which only serve to further dehydrate them.  It’s no wonder that water is the number one nutritional deficiency in our country.

Why is water so important?

Water makes up about 60% of our body composition, and we can only go a matter of days without it.  Here are just a few of its other roles in the body.

  • Improves oxygen delivery to cells
  • Transports nutrients
  • Enables cellular hydration
  • Moistens oxygen for easier breathing
  • Cushions bones and joints
  • Absorbs shocks to the joints and organs
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Removes wastes
  • Flushes toxins
  • Lubricates the joints
  • Improves cell-to-cell communication
  • Maintains normal electrical properties of cells
  • Empowers the body’s natural healing process

Is it just me, or is there some really important stuff on that list?  What more reason do you need to get sipping?

Tips for staying adequately hydrated:

  • Know how much water you need on a daily basis.  The body can only produce about 8% of its daily water needs through metabolic processes, and the remaining 92% must be ingested through our foods and beverages.  Since we can’t store it, we have to be diligent about staying hydrated every single day.  Take your body weight and divide it in half.  That is how many ounces of water you should be drinking a day (not to exceed 100 ounces).  You should drink an additional 12-15 ounces for every 6 ounces of diuretics you drink.
  • Be a sipper, not a chugger!  Some people do drink enough water, but they tend to let hours go by before chugging a large quantity all at once, drowning their kidneys and maybe even doing more harm than good.  When we sip, we give the water to the kidneys at a rate that they can most effectively use it.  During these humid summer months in Georgia, it’s even more important to drink throughout the day to replace all the water we lose when we sweat.
  • Find a water bottle you love.  If you’re going to be a steady sipper, then you’ll need a reliable bottle that you can take everywhere you go.  There are several great brands on the market.  I’m a fan of the 750 ml Camelbaks because they fit in the cup holders in the car and the cardio equipment at the gym, and they don’t break if you drop them.

You will seldom find me without my Camelbak water bottle. Make sure everyone in your family has their very own water bottle that goes everywhere with them this summer.

  • Add fresh lemon or lime to your water.  This will make it more refreshing, and you’ll likely drink more.  Lemon and lime also serve as an antioxidant boost and help keep your systemic pH balanced.
  • Flavor it up for kids.  If you think it’s hard for adults to remember to drink water, it’s even harder to keep our kids adequately hydrated.  With all the running around they do, they tend to lose more moisture through sweat as well.  For years I’ve been urging my friends and Longevity patients to stay away from Crystal Light packets, because they were full of artificial sweeteners.  At last, this company got with the program and came out with an all-natural variety, Crystal Light Pure.  They are sweetened with stevia and real sugar (less than a teaspoon per serving) and contain 15 calories per serving.  Trader Joe’s makes a similar product called Fast Flavor Sticks (also 15 calories per serving).  These flavor packets might just do the trick in getting your child to drink enough water!   Please keep your family away from any beverages or flavor packets sweetened with high artificial sweeteners like fructose corn syrup, Splenda or aspartame!

The TJ’s flavor sticks come in pomegranate cherry and iced tea with lemon flavors. They are super sweet, so you’ll only need about half a packet for a large glass of water.

  • Kill two birds with one stone.  Or as my husband says, hit two ducks in the butt with one rock!  As long as you’re drinking water, you might as well add other things your body could use as well.  I personally love Emergen-C packets.  They can be purchased in a variety of flavors at any grocery store and they’re a great way to increase electrolytes, combat cellular damage and boost the immune system.  Sometimes I also add a little liquid chlorophyll to my water to help increase my mineral intake.

Add Chlorophyll to your water to help increase energy, stamina and mental clarity.

  • Know the signs of dehydration.  Fatigue, irritability, anxiety, cravings, cramps and headaches are all signals that you could be dehydrated.  (We’re so quick to take pain medicine for these symptoms when what we really need is to DRINK WATER!)  Unfortunately, by the time we recognize these symptoms, we’re already very behind on our water intake.  That’s why it’s best to proactively drink all day long!

So if you’re reading this, you know what to do.  Get up right now and get yourself a nice tall glass of water!  It’s one of the easiest things we can do to take care of our health and meet our bodies’ nutritional needs today.  I’ll drink to that!

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Natural Stress Remedies for the Craziest Time of the Year

We’re coming into the most hectic time of the year…the holidays.  It starts with Halloween, and it doesn’t stop until the New Year.  Between parties, gift shopping, cooking, final exams, school plays and numerous other commitments, our stress levels can easily get out of control.

When stress and anxiety soar, our health habits tend to plummet.  We don’t sleep as well, and our gym visits fall by the wayside (until the New Year when the gyms are flooded with all the good-intentioned people with fresh resolutions!).  It’s all too easy for our diet to be narrowed down to  the “other” 5 food groups: Halloween candy, fruit cake, egg nog, sweet potato casserole and pumpkin pie!

So what are some things we can do to manage our stress before our health habits take a nose dive and we spiral into full-fledged holiday depression?  Implementing healthy habits is the first step.  Check out this post I wrote last spring for a few ideas.

Here are a few specific natural stress remedies and stress-relieving foods to help you keep your cool all the way through the New Year.

NATURAL STRESS REMEDIES

  • Adaptogens – These are a family of herbs that help increase resistance to stress, fatigue, insomnia and trauma.  Unlike traditional mood-elevating medications, adaptogens are non-toxic, non-habit forming and require no prescription.  Adaptogens work not only when you take them, but for a sustained period of time, and they become increasingly active the more your body needs them.  At Longevity, our favorite adaptogens are rhodiola rosea (mood, energy), valerian root (sleep, calming the nerves), ashwaganda (stamina, immunity, clarity), holy basil (memory, stress) and ginseng (anxiety, energy).  Many of our natural stress formulas and adrenal support supplements contain one or a combination of these herbs.

Adaptocrine is Longevity's most popular blend of adaptogenic herbs. It restores depleted adrenal glands and helps regulate stress and circadian rhythms.

  • Rescue Remedy – This blend of Bach-flower remedies is great when you need to take the edge off your anxiety in a hurry.  I’ve been known to take it before an exam, after a frustrating morning commute or even to help me sleep.  The nice thing about this product is that you can pick it up at any health food store, it comes in drops, spray and a kids formula, and it’s safe for the whole family.
  • GABA – Gamma-Amino Butyric Acid (GABA) is an amino acid which acts as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It calms nerve activity, acting as a natural tranquilizer.  GABA can help with insomnia and anxiety, and it’s also been shown to improve immunity.  You can purchase GABA on its own, and it’s often included in stress-relieving, mood-elevating formulas.
  • B Vitamins – This group of vitamins is associated with relief of stress, nervousness and anxiety, as well as cardiovascular support, energy, healthy skin, hair and nails, and immunity.  Vitamin B deficiency can often lead to depression symptoms.  Unfortunately, many common medications and oral contraceptives deplete our bodies of B vitamins (If you’re on birth control, be sure to take a B complex!).  Recently, researchers at Oregon State University found that athletes who lack B vitamins have reduced high-intensity exercise performance and are less able to repair damaged muscles or build muscle mass than their peers who eat a diet rich with B-vitamins (If you’re training for a big event or want more exercise endurance, consider a B complex!).
  • 5 HTP – 5-Hydrixytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid that helps regulate serotonin (the “feel good” hormone) in the brain and central nervous system.  Low serotonin levels are a common side effect of our stressful modern lives, and it leads to issues like depression, headaches, cravings, PMS symptoms and fibromyalgia.  Taking a controlled-release 5-HTP supplement can help raise serotonin levels quickly and steadily over a 12-hour period.
  • St. John ‘s Wort – This is another one of the classic herbal remedies for mild depression.  You can also pick this product up at any health food store, and it’s included in many stress-relieving supplements.

There are tons more natural stress remedies out there, and I’ve just named a few here.  Contact me or the Longevity Pharmacy to learn about which one might be right for you!

STRESS-RELIEVING FOODS

  • Green Tea – This tasty beverage contains L-theanine, an amino acid that reduces anxiety and enhances mood.  Green tea not only has a calming effect, but it improves mental alertness.  Green tea is also a great antioxidant, meaning it helps the body combat free radical damage to the cells.

Consider replacing your morning coffee with green tea during times of high stress!

  • Super Fruits and Veggies – Bulk up on produce items rich in antioxidants and stress-fighting vitamin C.  Think berries, citrus fruits and greens.
  • Protein, Protein, Protein – I can’t stress enough how important it is to get adequate amounts of protein throughout the day, and especially at breakfast.  Don’t let yourself go on a sugar roller coaster, which leads to anxiety, depression and poor mental focus.  Animal protein is high in those B vitamins I discussed above!
  • Healthy Fats High-quality fat is the long-burning fuel we need to survive all the end-of-year madness, so don’t be fat phobic!  Trans fats are linked with ADD, depression and fatigue.  Think almonds, avocados, extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil, and avoid those fried foods and snacks made with hydrogenated oils whenever you can!
  • Whole Grains – High-quality grains are fortified with folic acid and B vitamins that help reduce stress.  Avoid white flour and go for grains like brown rice, quinoa, bulgur, oatmeal and whole wheat whenever possible.

For more ideas, check out these related posts on mood-boosting and brain-boosting foods!  Once again, don’t underestimate the importance of a good night’s sleep and regular exercise when it comes to fighting stress during this hectic time of year.

What remedies, foods or healthy habits do you reach for when combating stress?  We’d love to hear your ideas!

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A Few of My Favorite Things

I’m long overdue for a Favorite Things post!  From time to time, I do a post dedicated solely to foods and products that I’m digging right now.  (Click here and here for other Favorite Things posts.)

THE NUTRITIONISTA’S FAVORITE THINGS: 

  • Bountiful Pantry Soups and Sides:  I’m always looking for fast and healthy meal ideas, and we just started carrying these convenient all-natural soup and side dish mixes at Longevity.  They’re hearty, delicious, and bursting with fall flavor.  All the mixes are gluten-free, and don’t contain added salt, MSG or other preservatives.  They’re ready in minutes and make 8 generous servings.  Our whole staff feeds off one package many days for lunch.  I’m a big fan of the corn chowder, split pea and lentil soups.   Call our office (770-642-4646) and ask for Tracey if you’d like to order them.  You won’t be sorry!  Visit http://www.bountifulpantry.com for more info.

Each mix is $8.50 at the Longevity store.

  •  The Gluten-Free Goddess: Even though I don’t have a gluten sensitivity myself, I love finding recipes that use gluten alternatives.  I enjoy experimenting with the recipes, and it also helps me when giving tips to our gluten intolerant patients.  The Gluten-Free Goddess blog contains and extensive library of fabulous gluten-free recipes and tips.  Check it out!
  • ViraClear: We’re coming into the thick of cold and flu season, and this homeopathic remedy is already flying off of our shelves.  ViraClear shortens the duration of  coughs and upper respiratory infections.  I recommend keeping it in the house, especially if you have children, and starting it at the first sign of congestion, sniffles or sore throat.  Often times we can knock out an infection before it really takes hold in our bodies if we act fast!  ViraClear comes in a cherry syrup for kids and regular homeopathic drops for adults.

ViraClear is a cold and flu staple in my house!

  • Crystal Light Pure: For years I’ve been urging my friends and Longevity patients to stay away from Crystal Light packets, because they were full of artificial sweeteners.  At last, this company got with the program and came out with an all-natural variety, Crystal Light Pure.  They are sweetened with stevia and real sugar (less than a teaspoon per serving) and contain 15 calories per serving.  Trader Joe’s makes a similar product called Fast Flavor Sticks (also 15 calories per serving).  They come in Pomegranate Cherry and Iced Tea with Lemon flavors.  These flavor packets are great if you or your children have a hard time drinking enough water every day.   Please stay away from any beverages or flavor packets sweetened with high artificial sweeteners like fructose corn syrup, Splenda or aspartame!

The TJ's variety are super sweet, so you'll only need about half a packet for a large container of water.

What healthy foods, products or web sites are you loving right now?  Pass them along, as we need all the help we can get to live our most nutritious life.  Have a great week!

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All About Alpha-Lipoic Acid

I’m always trying to learn about the latest and greatest in antioxidants, and lately I’ve been all about some Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA).  This  antioxidant is made naturally in the body and is contained in every cell to help covert glucose to energy.  ALA neutralizes a variety of free radicals and is  particularly beneficial for people with diabetes who have higher levels of free-radical damage (destruction of healthy cells) as well as higher sugar levels.

Here are a few more benefits of ALA:

  • Regenerates vitamins C and E
  • Helps maintain the proper ratio of Coenzyme Q10 in the mitochondria of the cells
  • Repairs oxidized proteins, preventing DNA damage
  • Replenishes glutathione (the body’s own detoxifier), which is reduced with aging and exercise
  • Helps curb carbohydrate/sugar cravings
  • Helps balance blood sugar
  • Metal-chelating activity (helps detoxify heavy metals from the body)
  • Can reduce pain, tingling and numbness in those with diabetes-related nerve damage
  • Protects brain and nerve tissue (Animals treated with ALA suffered less brain damage and had a four times greater survival rate after a stroke than animals who did not receive this supplement.)

Unlike other antioxidants that work only in water (like vitamin C) or in fat cells (like vitamin E), ALA is both fat- and water-soluble, so it’s a whole body antioxidant.

Small amounts of ALA are found in foods like peas, spinach, brussel sprouts, broccoli, Brewer's yeast, rice bran and organ meats.

In order to really get the therapeutic dose of ALA (1200 mg per day), I recommend taking it as a supplement.  My favorite brand is the ALAmax CR by Xymogen because the controlled-release technology improves the efficacy of the ALA and helps to maintain blood sugar over a longer period of time.  This formula also includes Biotin, which supports the function of ALA in regulating glucose metabolism.

ALAmax CR is designed to neutralize free radicals before they can cause damage to your cells.

If you or someone you know struggles with diabetes, blood sugar balance or sugar cravings, or you just need a high-powered antioxidant to combat stress, aging and regular exercise, then ALA might be the right nutritional supplement for you.

Let me know if you have any questions about ALA and it’s benefits.

Happy SUMMER!

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What’s pH got to do with it?

Remember learning about the pH scale in science class?  That was pretty much the last time I gave any thought to acidity vs. alkalinity, that is until I started studying nutrition.  It turns out that many of the most prominent diseases in our society often come down to one thing, pH imbalance.

Almost every patient that walks through our door at Longevity is too acidic.  This dangerous condition is called acidosis, and it weakens all the body’s systems.  You can think of it like this – bad things grow in acidic environments, things like free radicals, cancer cells and other antigens.  However, a body with a balanced pH allows for the normal function necessary for disease resistance.

In the words of Dr. T.A. Baroody, Jr, in his book Alkalize or Die, “Acidosis is the basic foundation of all disease.  We need to understand the simple process of alkalizing our body and the important role a properly alkalized body plays in restoring and maintaining our overall health. Our glands and organs function properly in exact proportion to the amount of alkaline and acid levels in our system.”

So before I go any further, let’s break down the pH scale, a.k.a let’s have a little 7th grade science refresher! pH (power of hydrogen) is a measure of the acidity or alkalinity of a given solution.  It’s measured on a scale of 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral.  The lower the pH (below 7), the more acidic the solution, and the higher the pH (higher than 7), the more alkaline the solution.

The body is composed of positively charged ions (acid-forming) and negatively charged ions (alkaline-forming), and it continuously strives to balance pH.

Just to clarify, when I say we shouldn’t be too acidic, I’m not talking about the stomach environment.  In fact, our stomach should be so acidic (ideally a pH of 1.5 to 3) that if we poured out its contents on a rug, it would burn a hole right through it! Urine pH should fluctuate between 6.0 and 6.5 in the morning and 6.5 to 7.0 in the evening.  Saliva pH should stay between 6.5 and 7.5 all day.

When our systems become too acidic, it forces our bodies to steal major minerals like magnesium and potassium from our bones and vital organs in order to buffer the acid and remove it from the body.  Here are some of the problems that result:

  • Acceleration of free radical damage, possibly contributing to the growth and spreading of cancer cells
  • Low energy/chronic fatigue
  • Premature aging
  • Weight gain/obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular stress – constriction of blood vessels, reduced oxygen
  • Kidney/bladder issues, such as kidney stones
  • Immune deficiencies
  • Hormone imbalance
  • Bone Loss, brittle bones, bone spurs, Osteoporosis
  • Muscle/joint pain
  • Digestive dysfunction
  • Yeast overgrowth

Unfortunately, acidity leads to more acidity.  Pathogens create acidifying toxins in the body. As the body becomes more and more acidic, bad bacteria, yeasts and other toxins multiply in the body. Since these organisms are living, they feed off of and create more acidic toxins, and the cycle continues.

So what can we do to prevent acidosis?  The answer is cleaning up our diet and lifestyle.  The standard American diet is high in acidic foods like red meat, dairy, refined sugar, artificial sweeteners, caffeine, alcohol and refined carbohydrates.  (Need yet another reason to avoid soft drinks?  They are extremely acidic!) Most of us aren’t getting enough of the more alkalizing foods, like fresh vegetables, whole grains and high-quality fats.

For a more complete list of the most acid and alkaline foods, check out these Acid and Alkaline Food Charts.  Remember, it’s not that all acidic foods are bad.  For example, many fruits are more acidic, and that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t eat them, it’s just that we have to stay well hydrated and also eat plenty of alkalizing foods to keep our system in balance.

If you’re not good about eating vegetables throughout the day, consider juicing, doing a green drink or throwing some greens into a morning smoothie.  One way or another, it’s crucial to get these highly beneficial vegetables into your system!

Greens like kale, spinach and kelp are extremely alkalizing...eat up!

Sports drinks, coffee, juices and other high-sugar and high-caffeine beverages are highly acidic.

Another tip for treating acidosis is to drink about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the mornings.  I like the Braggs brand because it’s organic and unpasteurized.

If you’re battling cancer, candida overgrowth, chronic fatigue syndrome, or any of the other health issues I mentioned, it’s time to start balancing your pH.  Even if you don’t have any health problems, but just want to eat a cleaner diet for wellness and prevention, an alkalizing diet is a fundamental place to start.   You’ll look and feel so much better.

Stay alkaline my friends!


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