8. Questions & Answers
I got the impression that the "acid-forming elements" and the "alkaline-forming elements" you refer to are particular minerals, the acid-forming ones being sulphur, phosphorus and chlorine and the alkaline-forming ones being potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and iron. Why is the study of acid and alkaline separate from the study of minerals?
Your impression is correct. Also, your question is a good one. It is important to remember that the human organism is a whole entity, even though it is composed of various glands, systems, etc. Also, foods are whole, even though they are composed of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals. Yet, it is customary and convenient to study the various parts of the whole, always keeping in mind that the whole is greater than the total of all its parts.
The subject of acid and alkaline should have been at least briefly discussed in the lesson on minerals. But is an important and large subject that also warranted a lesson in itself. Hence, this lesson!
You said to avoid refined and processed foods because these foods are lacking in alkaline minerals. Does this mean that refined and processed foods are acid-forming?
No. Refined and processed foods are usually devoid of both the alkaline minerals and the acid minerals. This means they are more likely to be neutral than acid-forming in the diet. However, like the acid-forming foods, foods devoid of most minerals upset the acid-alkaline ratio of the body, but in a different way: Vitamins and minerals are needed for the metabolism and consequent efficient use of foods eaten. When carbohydrates are eaten, but the nutrients needed in their metabolism and utilization are not supplied in the way that nature intended, the body must draw upon its reserve supplies and then on the minerals in the bones and teeth. Since the body's reserve supplies are quite limited, consumption of refined and processed foods results in minerals being drawn from bones and teeth and in a myriad of health problems, from hypoglycemia and diabetes, to dental caries, osteoporosis, nervousness and depression.
The reason why the body does not keep a larger reserve of vitamins, minerals, etc. for metabolism of refined and processed foods is obvious: We are not naturally designed for eating fragmented foods; that is, foods that have had some components removed in processing or refining.
People who advocate a macrobiotic diet claim that rice is the perfect food in that it best harmonizes with the body's needs as regards acid and alkaline. Yet the macrobiotic diet is entirely different from the Hygienic diet—and you do not advocate the use of rice in the diet at all! Please explain.
In a diet based on grains, rice is one of best of the grains as regards the acid-alkaline Indeed, it is far less harmful in the diet than is wheat, the Western world's staple grain. In that regard, the macrobiotic diet is less harmful than the conventional American diet. In fact, the macrobiotic even has a few things in common with the Life Science (natural) diet: For one, neither dietary regime, in its pure interpretation, advocates sweeteners of any kind. Nor does either dietary school advocate dairy foods, eggs or meats (except fish, in the case of macrobiotics).
However, it must be understood that macrobiotics is based on tradition, economic lack and many false premises, whereas the Life Science regime is based on science and nature and not upon economic considerations or tradition. Sea salt is advocated by the macrobiotic school. However, scientific fact is that all salt in inorganic form, which sea salt and rock salt both are, is poisonous and is responsible for many diseases and health problems. This is why soy sauces and miso, both containing salt, are very harmful foods. Rice is rather bland without soy sauce or other flavorings. Also, it has to be cooked, a distinct health disadvantage. Rice is deficient in water and in the wide variety of vitamins and minerals that can be found in fresh raw fruits and vegetables. Rice also lacks the flavor and the attractiveness of fresh fruits and vegetables. Just looking at a few of the facts, you can readily see which foods nature intended for humans and which came to be used by humans as a result of lack, ignorance and tradition.
Macrobiotic cooking also uses oils for sauteeing foods and for making tempuras.
That's correct. As you have learned in previous lessons, heated oils are very toxic within the human organism and lead to many serious diseases, including cancer.
Will including grains in the diet disturb the body's acid-alkaline balance?
First, we should repeat that the body has built-in buffer systems for maintaining its normal pH balance. Most foods will stimulate these systems to maintain normal pH. However, some foods cause the body's buffer systems to work extra hard because certain foods (those not normal and correct to the human dietary) render too many acids upon metabolism, most notably, meats, dairy products, eggs, etc.
Grains are also acid-forming, as a rule. Therefore, if you eat them, eat them in extreme moderation (nor more than once every two or three days). We recommend that you have your grain portion in place of a portion of nuts, seeds or avocados, since grains are very poor combinations with these foods. Grains, if eaten, should be consumed with raw nonstarchy vegetables and not with fruits or sweeteners. Nor should they be salted because, as stated earlier, salt is poisonous in the human organism and leads to health problems.
Isn't it okay to use a little baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) mixed with distilled water in case of indigestion that may occur even if foods are correctly combined or in cases where incorrect combinations cannot be avoided, like when you're a guest at someone else's house?
Absolutely not! Baking soda and all commercially-sold antacid preparations are very harmful when taken often, for they cause alkalosis by depleting the body's acid-forming minerals. Remedies of any kind should never be used! The law of dual effects says that a secondary effect follows on the heels of the primary effect of any drug (baking soda is one). What this means in this case is that a worse case of indigestion will occur in the next meal after the baking soda was used.
You should always avoid incorrect combinations, even when you are a guest at someone else's house. Correct combinations are usually possible or can be politely requested. You may have to pass up certain dishes or pass up invitations if you really want to become and/or remain healthy.
If you get indigestion despite correct food combining, you would benefit by a fast. A fast will give your digestive system a chance to rest and heal so that it can better do its job. It is also advisable to eat smaller meals, to chew your food well, to eat easy-to-digest foods such as raw fruits and vegetables and to be sure you are relaxed during mealtime. Your food will digest best if you do not exercise very vigorously immediately before or after a meal and if you are not overly stressed or anxious before, during or after your meal.
> Lesson 12 - The Role Of Acid And Alkaline Substances Within The Body
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