Acid-Alkaline Diet: What to Eat and Avoid | Great List!

Lots and lots of people are talking about alkalising now. Most recently, and notably, the rising star of the nutrition world Dr Nish Joshi has based his Holistic Detox book on the alkaline acid balance theory. In fact, the first chapter of his book talks about the importance of a correct alkaline balance and he goes on to list acid and alkaline foods, how to grow wheatgrass and the benefits of juicing alkaline vegetables. This book is mainstream and so there are now hundreds and thousands of people unwittingly following ‘The pH Miracle’ approach of the originator, Dr Robert Young without giving it a second thought.

Acid Alkaline Diet What to Eat and Avoid Great List
Acid Alkaline Diet What to Eat and Avoid Great List

The difference is this – when people read Dr. Young’s book they rarely even try to follow his suggestions, but when people read Dr. Joshi’s book they give it a fair go.

Following an alkaline diet

I think that there is more to this than the fact that Dr. Joshi has got some high profile, celeb followers like Gwyneth Paltrow and Patsy Kensit. I actually think that following an alkaline diet is pretty straightforward – and not that difficult. The two books have taken quite different approaches to present this information. Whether intentional or not, Dr. Young spent a lot of time discussing the whys and wherefores. Dozens of pages are spent talking about the colon, the intestines, blood, mucus and the actual science and background behind this theory. Without the backing of beautiful walking adverts (celebs), I think he had to do this to get people to believe and understand his approach.

However, this is a double-edged sword. Yes, he does explain quite brilliantly how and why this approach to diet works and makes sense. But I think within this he loses many people. Personally, I prefer this approach as I love to learn more and understand the workings behind things – but this is definitely not everyone’s bag. Maybe he would have been better off splitting it into two books – why and how.

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On the other hand, Dr. Joshi’s book is beautifully presented, with full-colour pictures, lots of nice typography and most importantly – no science, just a how-to.

Dr. Young also makes the mistake of fully discussing one essential fact – that it took him and his family quite a long time to get fully balanced.

Interesting.

So the question that this poses (in my opinion) are this – is the alkaline diet really that difficult to achieve, or has Dr. Young (and to some degree Tony Robbins) made it seem more complicated than it really is?

I must admit, that for the first year or so after I first learned about this approach to health I thought it was complicated and tricky to adhere to. The process of setting up Energise with Callum et al writing loads of content for our resources section, widening my reading too many many other health authors, blogs and programs have allowed me time and the opportunity to look at this lifestyle with a new perspective.

To me, the alkaline/acid approach to health is not actually that difficult or confusing. It just seems that way.

I know that sounds lame but I really believe it. I’m not going to chicken out here either, I am going to explain what I mean.

My explanation relates quite nicely back to the post by Eugine that I pointed out earlier about mastering the fundamentals. If you get the fundamentals sorted so that you are getting the basics right day-in, day-out then you are 99.9% there.

So What Are the Fundamentals

The fundamentals of achieving an energy-boosting, life-giving acid-alkaline balance are quite straightforward. I spent a lot of time researching and constructing this list of alkaline and acid foods which does simplify things a little – but I want to go a step further here.

Step One: Increase Alkalinity

Drink at least three litres of alkaline/pH neutral water mixed with Green Drink per day: drinking 3-5 litres of water per day will give your body the tools to flush toxins from your system, while the greens will give your body a real alkaline boost.

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Drink at least 1 fresh vegetable juice per day: getting into the habit of juicing daily will give your body a real gift. Fresh, nutrient-packed juices will also increase your alkalinity and provide you with the goodness of a gargantuan salad in a small glass. Brilliant.

Give your body ‘good fats’ daily: this is probably the easiest of all the fundamentals to stick to but is probably one of the most important. Your body cannot make these fats by itself, but it needs them. It’s why they are called essential fatty acids. I have waxed lyrical about EFAs heaps of times before, here and for more information have a look at Udo’s Site.

Have a salad as one of your meals every day: this is easier than it sounds and it will make a big difference to your energy levels and overall wellbeing. Don’t just think of a normal lame salad. Think of giant, colourful, varied salads. Think of avocado, spinach, pine nuts, almonds, chickpeas, red cabbage, Roma tomatoes, cucumber, snow peas, sprouts, kidney beans, green beans, radish, fig, sunflower seeds, beets, artichoke, watermelon and herbs, herbs, herbs! Now think of beautiful dressings with lemons, limes and olive oils. See? Lovely.

Exercise aerobically three times a week (again, at least): exercising aerobically increases alkalinity by helping to flush the body of toxins, cleansing the lymph system and increasing your energy, clarity and wellbeing. C’mon, I don’t have to explain to you why it is essential that you must exercise regularly do I?

Just eat loads of green vegetables every single day! If you do this, you will feel the difference.

Step Two: Decrease Acidity

Stop eating these foods (don’t even contemplate it!):

Dairy – cheese, milk, yoghurt, cream etc. They are cloggers.
Meat – apart from some fish if necessary.
Sweets and Snacks – you know this already – chocolate, ice creams, lollies, crisps, biscuits: anything that you already know is bad for you and that you shouldn’t keep eating. It just makes sense.

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Sugary, unhealthy drinks – coffee, tea, Coke, Pepsi, lemonade etc: so, so much wrong with these drinks. If it isn’t the caffeine (and the added milk and sugar we put in coffee and tea) it is the absurd amounts of sugar in fizzy drinks. This also includes packaged juice drinks, cordials and despite their best intentions ‘innocent’-type juices. Just by cutting out tea and coffee when I first started out took approx one pint of milk and 15 teaspoons of sugar from my daily diet.

‘Bad’ fats and oils – anything that is hydrogenated (partially or fully), saturated, solid (butter and marge), stored outside of a fridge and in a plastic/perspex container (light, air and heat make ALL oils toxic) or cooked. These fats are bad news.

Yeast – sadly that includes marmite and beer. Yeast is responsible for so many illnesses, diseases and symptoms of poor health including fatigue, indigestion, asthma, colds and flu, joint pain, bad breath, PMS, heartburn, lack of sex drive, hernia, headaches, lethargy, muscle aches, allergies, IBS, irritability, dry skin, infections, weight gain, multiple sclerosis, tumours, dizziness, food cravings, mood swings, depression…need I go on?

To conclude…

OK – not a stroll in the park, but it is hardly rocket science. Eat the things you already know are good for you and stay away from the things that you know are bad for you.

Of course, do not try to do everything all at once, it will never work. But perhaps this could be a good transition program for you. Over the next 12 weeks trying to master each of these 12 fundamentals one at a time, week-by-week. Go on – I dare you!

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