The health trend of learning how to alkalize your body has become quite popular over the last few years. And once you do a bit of digging into the science behind it, it’s pretty easy to understand why.
The best part? This stuff isn’t so technical that you can’t wrap your brain around it, and once you understand what it’s all about, it’s easy to try.
So, why learn how to alkalize your body? What is alkalinity, anyway? And why is it so important for us and our bodies?
Alkaline vs Acidity: What’s The Difference?
Alright, we’re going to do a little throwback to high school chemistry class, but don’t panic.
Remember doing those experiments where you dipped little paper strips that changed color into beakers of water to test its pH level? pH is the measure of how acidic or alkaline a solution is, with 7 as neutral on the scale. Pure water has a pH of 7.
Anything below 7 is considered to be acidic. Anything above 7 is considered to be basic, or alkaline.
What’s important about all this is that it’s not just liquid solutions in beakers that have a pH level. Our bodies also have pH! And that’s where alkaline and acidic states come into play.
What Acidity Does To The Body
If you’d like to learn how to alkalize your body, you’ll first need to understand the difference between alkalinity and acidity in the body.
Our bodies constantly strive for balance — they are happiest when they can find a healthy medium. We have biological baselines that regulate our hormones, neurotransmitters, and the levels of alkalinity and acidity in our bodies.
What we consume when we eat and drink can have a huge impact on the internal pH of our bodies. We swing between states of acidity and alkalinity, and our body has to grapple with the substances we feed it to try and bring us back into balance.
The issue is that many of us have an internal pH that is too acidic. Our bodies have become acidic because of what we consume. Oh, and stress plays a big role, too.
Maintaining a healthier pH means bringing down the acidity in our bodies. And when our bodies are too acidic? That’s a big problem.
Here are just a few ways that chronic acidity, also called metabolic acidosis, can manifest:
- Chronic fatigue
- Brain fog
- Lack of appetite
- Increased heart rate
- Shallow breathing
- Inflamed gums
- Weight gain
- Joint paint
Too much acid in the body is no joke. And it’s something many people unwittingly suffer from in a chronic state of metabolic acidosis.
The good news? You can combat chronic acidity in the body easily. In so doing, you’ll be taking a powerful step in the direction of better health and a more energized body and mind.
How To Make Your Body More Alkaline With Food
The two biggest contributors to acidity in the body are: 1) what you consume, and 2) stress.
We’re going to address both of those concerns, but we’ll start with food.
In learning how to alkalize your body with food, you’ll not only be bringing your body back from a toxic, acidic state, but you’ll be getting plenty of good nutrients and vitamins into your diet too — because, surprise, surprise: alkaline food is very good for you.
Encouraging alkalinity in the body will help you maintain a healthy weight, improve the function of your immune system, boost your ability to absorb vitamins, and reduce chronic inflammation. It’s a win-win-win-win!
So, are you ready to learn how to alkalize your body right at home?
It’s as simple as consuming the right foods. By eating more alkaline foods, you’ll be cleansing yourself of unnecessary toxins and acidic buildup, and crafting the foundation of a better balanced body.
Here are some of the most potent alkaline foods to start bringing into your diet:
- Citrus fruits
- Ripe bananas
The more fresh, raw food you consume, the better. These life-giving, nutrient dense foods will swing your body back toward alkalinity, combating the chronic acidity that plagues so many of us.
How To Alkalize Your Body By Avoiding Acidic Foods
Understanding how to alkalize your body isn’t just about consuming more alkaline foods. It’s also about cutting back on foods that are highly acidic.
Keep in mind, you can still consume all these foods. You just may want to pay more attention to how often you’re consuming them and cut back where you can:
- Processed sugar
- Processed meats
- High protein supplements
Limit these foods when possible, and be aware that if you consume them in excess, they could be contributing to an acidic state in your body.
How To Alkalize Your Body Using The Wim Hof Breathing Technique
Now that we’ve addressed the first cause of toxic acidity in the body, we’re going to address the second: stress.
When we’re stressed, we tend to breathe shallowly, never quite taking a full, whole breath into our lungs. We take short, quick breaths, our heart rate increases, and we feel dizzy. When stress and anxiety get bad enough, they can lead to a full-blown panic attack.
But apart from anxiety’s other debilitating physiological symptoms, it can also affect the pH of the body. When we take shallow breaths, like we do when we’re stressed, we aren’t fully blowing off the carbon dioxide in our lungs, which allows it to build in our bodies.
The body can break down carbon dioxide on its own, but not if it’s too busy breaking down all the acidity in the food you just ate for lunch. This carbon dioxide can continue to build until our internal pH becomes acidic.
There’s where the Wim Hof breathing technique comes in.
Who is Wim Hof?
Wim Hof, also called “The Iceman,” is a 58-year-old man from the Netherlands. He holds a total of twenty-six world records for everything from the world’s longest ice bath, to running up Mount Kilimanjaro wearing just a pair of short in two days flat.
Wim Hof is a modern day Superman and has encountered his share of death-defying experiences. He continually astounds medical researchers and the general public with his ability to combat the physiological laws of nature.
The Wim Hof Method, a three-step technique that can teach you to unlock the true potential of your body and mind, focuses on three things: cold therapy, breathing, and a strong mindset.
Today, we’re going to focus on the Wim Hof breathing technique for alkalinity.
How To Practice The Wim Hof Breathing Technique
When learning how to alkalize your body, you’ll have to incorporate both the right foods and the right practices into your daily routine.
Here’s how to try the Wim Hof breathing technique at home:
- Set a timer for twenty minutes.
- Get into a comfortable position, with your spine erect but shoulders and neck relaxed.
- Take 40 deep breaths, filling your lungs to their capacity. Use your diaphragm to fill your belly like a balloon, breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- After the 40th exhale, stop, and hold your breath, lungs empty of air.
- Hold on as long as you can. Once you need to take your next breath, do so, then exhale, emptying your lungs entirely once more.
- Begin the process again, until the twenty minutes is up.
Here is a video of Wim Hof teaching his Breath Technique and the immense burst of physical strength received afterwards to Vishen:
If you’re curious to learn more about the pH state of your body, you can monitor your progress quite easily with the use of pH strips (yes, just like those ones you used in chemistry class)!
Monitor the pH of your body once a week to check in on how you’re doing.
What do you think of alkalinity vs acidity in the body? Do you think you may be suffering from chronic acidity?