Walk The (Alka)Line
For good health, our bodies need to be slightly alkaline. Our immunity is directly related to how alkaline our diet is. Environmental toxins, excess sugar, medications, and excess caffeine & alcohol create excess acidity in the body. An overly acidic diet eventually leads to a weakened state, and our bodies become susceptible to disease. It’s imperative that we offset these stressors with alkalizing foods and lifestyle habits. The pH spectrum measures how acidic or alkaline our body system is; the scale runs from 0-14. Neutral pH is 7.0. The higher the pH (greater than 7) the more alkaline, while a lower pH, (less than 7) is acidic.
When you are stressed, make poor lifestyle choices, or are exposed to a toxic environment, your body works hard to bring you back to a more alkaline state. The body starts pulling minerals like magnesium and calcium from your bones, teeth, and organs to neutralize the acid. Unprocessed, plant-based foods are highly alkaline, meaning they clean the blood, oxygenate the body, and keep your cells in tip-top shape! These will give you energy, clear up your skin and reduce inflammation in the body. The more, the better!!
It’s a good idea to start the day with daily lemon water, drink a fresh vegetable juice, and fill more than half your plate with veggies at every meal. Offset overly acidic foods like sugar, dairy, meat, caffeine and alcohol by loading up on greens, fresh veggies, fruits, and alkaline water daily. Think 80/20: Make 80% of the foods you eat alkaline and 20% acidic.
1. Drink plenty of water.
Adequate water intake supports all body systems and clears out excess toxins. Drink half your body weight in ounces everyday to keep your body systems regulated. For instance, if you weigh 130 pounds, drink 65 ounces of water daily. Carry a water bottle with you & fill it with filtered water all day vs. constantly drinking from plastic, which wreaks havoc on your hormones. For an extra boost in alkalinity – add lemon! Lemon water is not only alkalizing but also contains high amounts of vitamin C and aids in digestion.
2. Support your lymph.
Support lymphatic detoxification by properly hydrating throughout the day, exercising daily, dry brushing, rebounding, getting regular massages and using breathwork techniques or practicing breath focused forms of yoga. It’s also imperative that we keep our detoxification pathways clean by cleansing seasonally with whole foods, focused self-care routines, spiritual practice, and stress reduction. All of these practices create more alkaline blood flow.
3. Trade coffee for tea.
Specifically, swap out your morning cup of coffee for herbal tea or green tea. Green tea is highly alkaline. Try jasmine, sencha, or matcha. Still can’t cut out the coffee? Try switching to a less processed, less acidic coffee like bulletproof or brands labeled low acid.
4. Eat a salad or add greens to every meal.
Load up on leafy greens everyday. Add a tbsp. of green powder to your smoothies or buy liquid chlorophyll and add it to your water once a day. Greens are highly alkaline and oxygen rich. Drink fresh green vegetable juices as often as possible. Again, greens contain high amounts of chlorophyll, which contain high amounts of oxygen, oxygen = alkalinity.
5. Move your body.
Exercise regularly to actively move acids out of the body. This keeps the lymph system flowing, and creates more alkaline blood. A rebounder is a wonderful tool to get your lymph going. Dancing, running, and swimming are also very effective. Exercise also helps to relieve stress and anxiety. Do your best to get moving whenever possible. Restorative practices like Iyengar Yoga, Yin Yoga, or gentle stretching counteract acids that build up from intense activity. Constantly mix up your routine!
6. Sleep and destress.
Stress creates cellular acidity. Always work on bringing yourself back into balance by creating rituals that make you feel good and balance your mind-body connection. Work on getting to Bed no later than 11pm: support your bodies natural rhythms of melatonin production, & balance your body systems by winding down and getting to sleep before 11pm. Meditate as often as possible, practice breathwork or breath centered yoga Oxygen is incredibly alkalizing to the body. Yogic breathing also reduces stress and anxiety, which has an alkalizing effect in the body by reducing inflammatory stress hormones. Try earthing, take long baths, drink tea, daydream, journal, go for a walk after dinner, and do whatever it is that makes you feel centered.