Alkaline Diet

A diet full of acid is supposed to promote inflammation and cause you to gain weight. Those foods include many items the average American eats every day, but also some healthy foods promoted by dietitians. Much of your diet, in fact, could be out of bounds if you are unable to eat acidic foods.

What Does an Alkaline Diet Look Like?

If you switch over to an alkaline diet, it will contain most fruits and vegetables. You will get your protein from soy products like tofu as well as certain nuts, seeds, and beans. The list is pretty long. You will notice that almonds and related products are safe: they contain a lot of calcium, iron, and tons of protein. Avocado is another great source of protein, healthy fat, a little bit of vitamin C, and fiber. If you want a sweet vegetable, try beetroot: also good for pregnant women, thanks to the levels of folate in beets.

The three Cs are cauliflower, carrots, and celery. Add these to your daily diet for all sorts of vitamins your body needs to maintain healthy eyes and immunity. Remember herbs too: great for flavor and safe for your alkaline diet.

Coconut is not just the new wonder food: it’s perfectly fine on the alkaline diet. Drink the milk, take coconut water, eat the fruit, and use other coconut derivatives. Not sure what to do with coconut? Make a curry using permitted vegetables, coconut milk, and appropriate herbs.

If you are avoiding gluten, you might be able to get away with a slice of gluten-free bread on your diet. Without wheat you aren’t consuming the acids found in regular bread. In fact, this is a highly effective diet for people with intolerance to dairy, wheat, and meat products. Even vegans can adopt alkaline meal plans.

What’s Out?

What can’t you eat on an alkaline diet? There is plenty of food that will have to be eliminated from your daily life, so it is possible you’ll be on your own with this one. If hubby loves his meat, do not expect him to support you by joining in. Meat and dairy are both gone and so is anything made with wheat. Basically, lasagna night is out and so is the bottle of wine you used to share over your plate of meaty, dairy-rich decadence. Coffee and regular black tea will also have to be cleared from the cupboard because caffeine is problematic on a low acid diet. Your whole life is about to change.

Support for the Alkaline Diet

Firstly, it might be encouraging to note that many movie and music stars favor this diet and find it highly effective. The medical community hasn’t found proof that you need to change the acidity of your diet to change your blood pH levels as your body does this without any help, but they promote the diet for other reasons.

Firstly, it is low in fat but contains healthy fats. A vegan/vegetarian diet still provides protein and all the nutrients you require although supplements might be required to make it a truly healthy way to go.

Secondly, you are required to eliminate refined, packaged, junk foods. There is no meal plan in which those would be considered healthy. Some diet programs promote their own snack foods and meal replacements, but even those are off the menu.

Basically, this is a whole-food approach to healthy eating and there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s low in sugar, doesn’t contain many baked goods (possibly gluten-free bread), allows for seasonal changes in local food supply, and is full of flavor and color. It’s not really a diet at all: more like a clean way to eat.

Alkaline Diet
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Jana Evans

Janet Evans is our resident Health Nut and aspiring chef. She can shop at Whole Foods and Trader Joe's with her eyes closed.