The body's pH level influences its health. The acid-base balance of your blood is significant for normal daily function, healing and digestion. The acidity or alkalinity level of your body is determined by a pH, potential of hydrogen, scale. The scale ranges from zero, which indicates high acidity, to 14, which indicates high alkalinity. A value of 7.0 means the pH is neutral, Merck Manuals Online Medical Library notes. Optimal acid-base balance is a pH of 7.35 to 7.45, which indicates the body is slightly alkaline. A slight deviation from this range on either side can result in significant health problems. In the event of acidosis or alkalosis, neutralizing your pH is necessary.
Get a physical health exam and pH test. Before employing neutralizing tactics, determine if your body has a pH imbalance. Symptoms present during acidosis or alkalosis is slight in most cases. Fatigue, nausea or headaches can occur, but symptoms generally appear as a result of other medical conditions impacted by pH imbalance. You can test at home with a urine or saliva test strip, which is available from health food stores. However, if you experience high or low results on your pH test, medical intervention is warranted. Consult your physician regarding pH level testing and course of treatment.
Take a sodium bicarbonate solution. Mild and acute cases of acidosis is remedied with baking soda and water. Add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to a 4 oz. glass of distilled water. Mix the baking soda until it dissolves in the glass and then drink the solution. To neutralize acid, take the solution four to seven times a day under the supervision of your physician. Do not exceed use of the sodium bicarbonate solution for more than a one week without physician approval.
Drink water and electrolyte-containing beverages. Excessive blood alkalinity results from the depletion of carbon dioxide or necessary minerals, such as sodium and potassium. Returning your body to neutral involves replacing the missing fluids either through drinking electrolyte containing water or sports drinks. Severe cases of alkalosis require intravenous administration of fluids from a medical professional. In the event of low carbon dioxide from respiratory problems, acid-base neutralization can be achieved by breathing into a paper bag.
Eat a plant-based diet. A 2008 study in the "Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition" found that using a plant-based supplement increased the research participants' alkalinity level to neutralize acidity. Eating foods rich in fruits and vegetables is an alternative means for neutralizing acid. Vegetables such as spinach, broccoli and beans or fruits such as raisins, bananas and apples are appropriate choices for neutralizing body pH. However, beef, pork and chicken are acid- forming foods. If you are trying to increase your acid, opt for animal-based products or eat plant foods to neutralize an acidic pH.
Take prescribed medications. Acid imbalance can result from poorly controlled medical conditions. For instance, diabetes is treated with insulin and taking this medication as prescribed is necessary to prevent metabolic acidosis. Respiratory acidosis is another condition requiring correct use of prescribed medication, such as an inhaler. Consult your physician regarding proper use of your medications to maintain neutral acid in your body.
Eat a well-balanced diet and drink plenty of water daily to prevent acid-base imbalance. In the event of indigestion, taking an antacid can help neutralize and reduce symptoms.
Bicarbonate solution provides temporary relief of acidosis and overuse may cause harm. Consult your physician regarding alternative treatment.
- Merck Manuals Online Medical Library: Acid-Base Balance
- "Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition": Plant-Based Dietary Supplement Increases Urinary pH; John M. Berardi, et al; November 2008
- Lab Tests Online: Acidosis and Alkalosis
- Prevent Disease: Acid and Alkaline Balance
- Trans4Mind.com: Food pH List