Article #4: Hypoalkalinity By Dr. Herbert M. Shelton
Acidosis is the term misapplied to a lessened alkalinity of the body fluids. The fluids of the body are normally slightly alkaline. A lowering of the alkalinity of these fluids is more properly termed hypoalkalinity. Acidosis or hypoalkalinity is defined as a condition characterized by a deficiency of fixed alkalies in the body, which leads to an increased production of ammonia in the urine and a high acidity.
Acidosis is not acid blood, for the blood never becomes acid during life. An alkaline blood and lymph is necessary to life and health and for the blood to even reach the point of neutrality would cause speedy death.
The normal ratio between the alkalies and acids of the body is approximately 80 to 20—80% alkali and 20% acid. This proportion is maintained in balance by the so-called “buffer salts”—sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium—from which either side may draw as need arises. When this “buffer” or “balance wheel” is in normal order any excess of acids in the body is promptly neutralized. It is only when there is a deficiency of these salts that troubles may arise. A shortening of the relationship between these is wrongly termed acidosis.
The body will not tolerate any free acid for a minute, except in the stomach during the process of digestion. All acids are instantly “bound,” by being combined with alkalies, to render them harmless. The body makes use of every resource at its command to preserve its alkalinity for the reason that its cells can thrive only in an alkaline medium and cannot possibly thrive in an acid medium.
Since we supply acids and alkalies to our bodies through food, the matter of a balance between acid foods and alkali or base foods is important. If an excessive amount of acid food is eaten, the blood is forced to draw upon its alkaline reserve, its “buffer salts,” in order to maintain its normal alkalinity. When we have taken more acid into the body than we can “bind” without sacrificing some of the bases of the tissues, blood alkalinity falls below the normal level and we have hypoalkalinity or acidosis.
Every food eaten leaves behind it an ash after it has been used by the body. The ash is either acid or alkaline. Eating too much acid-ash food, or eating it over long periods of time, results in storing acid-ash in the cells and in depleting the body of its alkaline reserve.
Acid-ash foods are all meats, eggs, cheese, milk (in adults), all cereals and cereal products, legumes (except in the green state), nuts, and all denatured foods of all kinds. Denatured foods have been robbed of their bases.
The alkaline-ash foods are fruits (except cranberries, prunes and some plums), all green vegetables and milk (in infants). Fats and oils are classed as neutral foods.
Severe acidosis may be produced experimentally by deficient diets, but such severe states are seldom met with in life, except in famine. Maignon has repeatedly shown that an exclusive protein diet is positively toxic even in the carnivora. Whipple, Slyke, Birkner, and Berg have shown the same thing.
The medical administration of acids, such as salicylic acid (often in aspirin), benzoic acid, boric acid, sulphuric acid, etc., leads to a dangerous loss of bases, for these acids can be rendered harmless and subsequently eliminated only after being combined with alkaline elements. Hydrochloric acid, prescribed by physicians in supposed gastric hypoacidity, also leaches the body of its bases and aids in producing acidosis.
Free acetic acid, as found in vinegar, if consumed in quantities, may lead to symptoms of acid poisoning. It is even more injurious to health than alcohol. The body is called upon to sacrifice its bases to neutralize the acid, while it has a particularly destructive effect upon the red corpuscles and may produce anemia.
A diet poor in bases, or food that has been robbed of its bases, has the same deleterious effects. The meat diet, as used in civilized countries, is of this type. An exclusive muscle-meat diet, when fed to dogs, will not maintain health and growth. If dogs are fed on meat from which the juices have been expressed, “emaciation ensues after a time, toxic symptoms set in, death speedily follows, and post-mortem examination shows in the skeleton changes characteristic of osteomalacia and osteoporosis.” (Osteomalacia is softening of the bones; Osteoporosis is the rarefication—decrease in density—of bone due to enlargement of its cavities or the formation of new spaces.)
- 1. Evaluation Of The Various Stages And Methods Of Preparation Of Uncooked Foods
- 2. Priority Of Food Preparation
- 3. Preparation Of Foods Without Cooking
- 4. The Sprouting Garden
- 5. Questions & Answers
- Article #1: Well, You Wanted To Know By V.V. Vetrano, B.S., D.C.
- Article #2: Some Fundamentals Of Food And Feeding By Ian Fowler
- Article #3: Vegetable Salads By Herbert M. Shelton
- Article #4: Hypoalkalinity By Herbert M. Shelton
- Article #5: Sprouts And Sprouting By H. Jay Dinshah
- Article #6: The Marvelous Avocado