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Podcast: The Truth About Alkalizing Your Blood, by Dr. Ben Kim
Posted by Dr. Ben Kim on Aug 29, 2008
Is it true that each food that you eat can cause your blood to become more alkaline or acidic?
The answer is: not really. The pH of your blood is tightly regulated by a complex system of buffers that are continuously at work to maintain a range of 7.35 to 7.45, which is slightly more alkaline than pure water.
If the pH of your blood falls below 7.35, the result is a condition called acidosis, a state that leads to central nervous system depression. Severe acidosis - where blood pH falls below 7.00 - can lead to a coma and even death.
If the pH of your blood rises above 7.45, the result is alkalosis. Severe alkalosis can also lead to death, but through a different mechanism - alkalosis causes all of the nerves in your body to become hypersensitive and over-excitable, often resulting in muscle spasms, nervousness, and convulsions; it's usually the convulsions that cause death in severe cases.
The bottom line is that if you're out and about, your body is doing an adequate job of keeping your blood pH somewhere between 7.35 to 7.45, and the foods that you are eating are not causing any wild deviations of your blood pH.
So what's up with all the hype about the need to alkalize your body? And what's to be made of the claim that being too acidic can cause osteoporosis, kidney stones, and a number of other undesirable health challenges?
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