Blood is slightly alkaline, but if your blood is too alkaline, it is called alkalosis. Your blood pH should ideally be around 7.3-7.5.
Alkalosis will cause muscle twitching, tetany (the little twitching under your eye), or in your arm or legs, muscle spasm, cramps in your calf, muscle weakness, allergies, and calcium deposits and dehydration.
With alkalosis, you wouldn’t want to alkalise the body even more because it is already too alkaline.
Your stomach needs to be acidic to digest and process your food. If it is too acidic, it will result in a condition called acidosis.
Symptoms of acidosis are feeling nervous with an uptight nervous system, sighing frequently and dehydration. You may have light or sound sensitivity, feel a lump in the throat when you are swallowing and probably have difficulty breathing at high altitudes.
Then there’s another condition called lactic acidosis, which can sometimes result in a coma. It can result from the side effects of certain medications.
A conventional, popular medicine to lower blood pressure contains a warning label informing the consumer that it could lead to lactic acidosis. The nutrients that can help to prevent these side effects are Vitamins B1 and B12.
Hypochlorhydria is a condition in which your stomach doesn’t have the quantity or strength of acid that it needs.
The pH of your stomach should ideally be between 4-6, which means you have a higher level of pH in your stomach to break down protein, kill pathogens, and absorb minerals.
If you don’t have the strength of this acid in your stomach, you will have incomplete digestion of proteins and pathogens can enter your system and create systemic illness.
You will also have difficulty absorbing minerals, which will cause anaemia. It will result in GERD (when the valve at the top of the stomach doesn’t close, and you get acid coming up your chest and throat).
When you have these symptoms, you are most likely to be put on antacids. If this is the case and you are on antacids, then acid reflux and indigestion, which are symptoms of low stomach acid, are going to neutralize the acid and cause the need for more medication because the antacids are not correcting the underlying problem.
You will then have constipation because you have incomplete digestion of the protein, malabsorption of nutrients, and it can even result in stomach cancer.
So now that you understand the difference between these three conditions and their symptoms, do you need to take something that neutralizes the acid or acidifies the body?
It certainly makes more sense to take apple cider vinegar for alkalosis and hypochlorydia and baking soda for acidosis. Remember with baking soda, that one teaspoon will give you 1200mg of sodium, so if you’re already high in sodium or potassium, your blood pressure might increase.
You may also have complications because the sodium-potassium ratio will be imbalanced.
The more sodium you have, the less potassium you will have because it will alter the correct ratio, thus creating a whole new set of complications down the track.
Most people are heavy on sodium in their diet but don’t have enough potassium. Our bodies require twice as much potassium – 4700mg a day – as sodium.
If you are taking baking soda, ensure that you are consuming plenty of potassium foods or take a potassium supplement so you can keep these ratios properly balanced.
Potassium supplements shouldn’t be taken if you have kidney problems, so always consult with a trusted, registered health professional first.
Trudy Kither is a naturopath and the owner of Nature’s Temple.