There are numerous benefits of maintaining a healthy, alkaline lifestyle. Not only will you experience noticeable differences in your sleep, mental alertness and energy levels, you will also experience latent benefits such as improved cardiovascular, tissue and bone health, enhanced cell functioning, as well as the mitigation of chronic diseases. There are many things we can do to assist our bodies in neutralizing acid and maintaining an alkaline state. In the list below, we will share easy steps you can take to help alkalize your body.
1. Consume Alkaline Foods and Beverages
Before we jump into things, it is important that we differentiate between alkaline/acidic food and beverages and alkaline-forming/acidic-forming food and beverages. When we talk about simply acidic or alkaline, we are referring to the acidic/alkaline components that make-up the food or beverage. On the other hand, when we discuss acid or alkaline-forming, we are referring to the way the food or beverage is digested in the body. There is a fairly simple explanation to this phenomenon. When alkaline substances such as protein and grains are metabolized by body, they may combine with sulfur or phosphorus, creating sulphuric or phosphoric acid. On the other hand, organic acids can become carbon dioxide and water during the digestive process. So, although a food or drink may seem acidic (like a lemon) or seem alkaline (like milk) it is important to look beyond the surface to its digestive properties.
(a) Alkaline Foods
Here at Santevia, we try to live an alkaline lifestyle by the 80/20 rule. We try to eat 80% alkaline-forming foods, and treat ourselves to 20% acidic-forming foods. This rule ensures that we never feel deprived or limited by our lifestyle. If you accidentally eat an acidic meal like a burger and fries for lunch, make up for it by eating an alkaline salad for dinner. Don’t give up – and alkaline lifestyle is achievable!
Fruits and Vegetables
Fresh fruits and vegetables are highly alkaline and offer plenty of vitamins and minerals that will contribute to neutralizing acidity. Ideally these fruits and vegetables should be eaten raw as they will provide the most minerals in their natural state. If you do prefer to cook your vegetables, it is best to lightly steam or bake them. Avoid frying foods as this will deplete their mineral content and add acid forming oils.
The highest alkalizing vegetables are dark, leafy greens such as kale, spinach, and collard greens. Some other examples of alkalizing vegetables include: mushrooms, radishes, cucumber, broccoli, oregano, garlic, ginger, green beans, celery, beets, and brussel sprouts. Alkalizing fruits include lemons, avocados, figs, watermelon, tomatoes, and oranges.
It’s important to consume an adequate amount of protein while living an alkaline lifestyle. Some alkaline and plant-based options for protein include almonds, hummus, lentils, navy beans, lima beans, as well as other types of beans. Of course, it is okay to consume some animal-based protein while living an alkaline lifestyle, but pay attention to portion sizes. According to the Canadian Food Guide, one serving of protein is only half a cup (125ml) or meat, fish, or poultry.
Other food groups
Foods like whole grains and even some legumes are not alkaline forming; however, they do offer nutritional benefits that are important components of a healthy diet. Eat these along with alkaline-forming foods to create a balanced diet. Acidic foods to avoid: cold cuts, processed cereals, dairy products, white breads and pastas, and high sodium foods.
(b) Alkaline Drinks
Like our list of alkaline foods, it is important to consume drinks that are as close to their natural state as possible. Avoid drinks that are highly processed with added sugars and artificial sweeteners. The easiest thing you can do to improve your health is to slowly phase out all beverages that are not water. We recommend drinking alkaline water regularly and enjoying fruit and vegetable juices on occasion.
“Drinking alkaline water is one of the best things you can do for your health.”
-Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook
Alkaline water is water that has a pH higher than 7 on the pH scale. Naturally occurring alkaline water is water that is full of beneficial trace minerals like calcium and magnesium that work to naturally raise the water’s pH. Santevia products like the Alkaline Pitcher and Gravity Water System work to mimic this natural process and provide you with mineralized, alkaline water in the comfort of your own home. Through drinking Santevia alkaline water, you can help your body neutralize acidity and replenish your body’s mineral stores.
Vegetables Juices and Smoothies:
Drinking juices and smoothies can be an excellent way to get your daily requirement of fruits and vegetables. Whenever possible, drink juices and smoothies made with organic fruits and vegetables as harmful contaminants like pesticides can be concentrated in these beverages. For the same reason, it is crucial to wash your fruits and vegetables before using them to make smoothies or juice.
Acidic drinks to avoid: Caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, milk, cola or soda, processed and sugary beverages.
Aerobic exercise is highly alkalizing and provides numerous health benefits. By increasing your heart rate, your will breathe at a faster rate, allowing your lungs to neutralize acidity through carbon exchange. The aerobic exercise will increase the amount of oxygen in your heart, lungs, blood, and cells throughout your entire body.
Many people can feel discouraged at the thought of a heart-racing workout, but exercise does not have to be hard - it can be as simple as taking the dog for a walking or playing soccer with the kids. According to the Canadian Health Guide, adults should be active at least 2.5 hours a week to achieve health benefits. If you split this up into five days – it’s only 30 minutes a day. Some easy tips include choosing a variety of activities that your enjoy, joining a local sports team, and setting a weekly exercise routine.
A good day starts with breakfast, right? Before that, you need a good night’s sleep. When our bodies are sleep deprived, it can throw our bodily functions off balance. Low blood sugar can lead to hormonal and mental imbalances, which can result in cravings for unhealthy foods. Ensuring that you have a full, restful night’s sleep will stop you from making destructive, acidic choices the next day. The best way to ensure you are getting enough sleep is to set a bedtime and stick to the routine. By going to sleep at the same time every night your body will fall into a natural rhythm, making it easier to stick to your goal. As well, sleeping according to a circadian rhythm will also promote natural cleansing of acidic waste in the body.
Through making small changes in your lifestyle, you too can achieve the numerous health benefits that come with an alkaline lifestyle. Drinking alkaline water is one of the easiest (and most beneficial) changes you can make in your day to day life. To learn more about the benefits of alkaline water and the range of Santevia at home and on-the-go filtration products, check out our website at www.santevia.com.