The Alkaline Diet and Its Effects on Oral Health

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The Alkaline Diet and Its Effects on Oral Health

by on 20 May

alkaline diet is inspiring a slew of cookbooks and blogs that all declare the same thing; your body needs to get rid of some acid.

What Is the Alkaline Diet?

The alkaline diet is a simple on, albeit a restrictive one, that aims to adjust the pH of your body by altering it with diet. The idea is that you can alter the very chemical balance of you blood just by altering your diet and avoiding certain foods.

The Benefits Claimed by the Alkaline Diet

Supporters of this latest diet craze make some pretty impressive claims about what it's capable of, so it's no wonder the internet is up in arms over it.

  • Weight Loss; Alkaline dieters, depending on their dedication level, lose a lot of weight very quickly.
  • Preventing Illness; Proponents of the diet claim that the unnatural balance of acid in most people today makes them more susceptible to serious illnesses and conditions like cancer and osteoporosis. It's believed by those that support the diet that meals low in acids will reduce the likelihood of contracting these illnesses, and some even suggest that it can helps to cure cancer.
  • Improving Energy Levels; It's believed by supporters that an alkaline diet reduces sluggishness and improves overall energy levels and brain function.

Foods includes and excluded in Alkaline Diet

Adhering to an alkaline diet is challenging - the rules are strict, and the diet is almost exclusively vegetarian, and for devout followers, vegan. Any foods high in acids are out, including:

  • Dairy
  • Eggs
  • Meat
  • Most grains
  • Processed foods
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Peanuts
  • Fish
  • Shellfish

Foods that are alkaline are preferred instead, with a strong emphasis on whole, natural foods, and a strict rule against packaged processed foods. here's what you can eat on a alkaline diet:

  • Most fruits and vegetables
  • soybeans
  • nuts and seeds
  • legumes

It's not a gig list; and alkaline diet is not for the faint of will, and requires a great deal of planning and self discipline to adhere to. Is it worth it though? Does the science add up?

Science vs Dieticians

Scientist are skeptical creatures to begin with and is struggling to accept the extraordinary claims made by supporters of the alkaline diet, and for one simple reason; what we eat has almost zero effect on the pH level of our blood.

Our bodies are natural regulators, and while nutrients have a very large impact on how well body functions, alkalinity is actually regulated by kidneys and urine output. The acidity of urine varies constantly, because it is constantly re-balancing your own internal pH. The pH of the human body never deviates beyond 7.35 to 7.45, unless in alkalosis or acidosis, both of which are serious conditions.

Not only is attempting to adjust the pH of your body with diet completely ineffective, but if it were possible, it would actually be incredibly dangerous.

The Good News About Alkaline Diets

Now let's move away from the dire warnings and onto the good news - alkaline diets do help people lose weight, and they may even prevent type 2 diabetes.

It's pretty simple, really; these diets eliminate sugars and processed foods, and for a lot of people, that's a huge shift in the way they eat. Eating a healthy balance of proteins and natural sources of carbohydrates in conjunction with plenty of fresh produce is a great way to lose weight, balance blood sugar, and keep you mind sharp and focused.

Though many nutritionists still advocate for diary and grains as a staple part of most diets, so long as you're getting enough calcium, iron, and fiber from alternative sources, it's not expected to have any serious adverse effects.

How Alkaline Diets Effects Your Child's Oral Health?

We all know that acids are bad for your teeth, The most damaging ones found as natural sugar produced in foods like fruit, especially the concentration of sugar in dry fruits,  also sodas, and sugary supplements in yogurts, milk and cereal can be really harmful to your teeth if consumed in excess. The acid will actually erode the enamel on your kids teeth, allowing bacteria to settle in and cause rapid decay.

Alkaline can actually have the effect of neutralizing those acids, fighting the erosion of your dentin and enamel and keeping our acidic saliva in check. These foods combat the effects of acidic foods, and help to neutralize them in our mouths, the pH level is directly related to the tooth decay process.

Naturally though, these is such thing as too much of a good thing, and that appears to be the case with alkaline foods. Due to the lack of diary products in your child diet by reducing calcium intake, alkaline diets can actually cause enamel to flake away, exposing the teeth to cavity-causing bacteria and contributing to decay.

Following a Healthy Alkaline Diet

The solution is as simple as it ever was: provide a healthy, balanced diet to children and limit refined sugars and processed foods, and don't' consume too much of any one thing.

An alkaline diet isn't going to affect the chemistry of your body, but it could have an effect on the strengths of your enamel. Whether you following a gluten-free regimen, are vegan or paleo, with a balanced diet, you will reduce the risk of tooth decay, and still improve your energy levels and overall health.

Proudly serving the children in Phoenix West Valley by Palm Valley Pediatric Dentistry - Goodyear, Avondale, Surprise PVPD tel: 623-535-7873

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