Preventing chronic disease with alkaline foods
This relates to those who are looking to better their health through nutrition, are under high stress, have food allergies, have other sources of physiologic stresses in the body, have osteopenia or osteoporosis, or who have Parkinson’s Disease. This is a summary and review of “Acid-Alkaline Balance and its effect on bone health” by Susan Brown & Russell Jaffe.Most Americans consume a diet and have a lifestyle that create a high acidic load on the body. The body tries to balance an acidic load by buffering the pH with sodium and potassium. But when sodium and potassium become depleted from chronic acidic load, chronic stress, or other nutrient deficiencies, the body starts to use calcium and magnesium. In this later stage of acid load, the body will steal the calcium from the bones. Where is a high acid load coming from? It comes from a high protein diet above 60g a day, high dietary phosphate, high dietary sulfate, soda, fried food, refined foods that are high in preservatives, and long chain fatty acids. It comes from lifestyle through excess stress from high cortisol and adrenaline, delayed immune system reactions (a common type of food allergies that many of you have tested with me), and any other physiological stress on the body. This is why it is important to treat any imbalance in your body now, especially if you are a teenager or in your 20-30s before you have developed such a high acidic load on your body that propagates chronic disease and osteoporosis. This goes back to the idea of preventative medicine and treating food as medicine.The basic goal, is consuming a wider variety and multiple colors of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables. Don’t forget the dark leafy greens! Not only will you be alkalizing your diet, but you will also be getting crucial vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids through your food. If you can’t afford all organic, aim for the dirty dozen: Aim for 70% of your meal as veggies, allowing the last 30% to be divided up between protein and good fats. The sources of protein abound from vegan, vegetarian, and leaner, lower acidic sources of animal meat. Cooking in fats that have high cooking temperatures before they turn into a trans fat, such as coconut oil, will preserve the fluidity of cellular membranes that are crucial for how your body works.The next step is then to individualize and optimize what foods have the most alkalizing ability for your body. Yes, this part can actually be tailored to you because each person a different nutrient requirement based upon their predisposition.


What’s the correlation with Parkinson’s Disease?
Cells maintain a very tight pH. This means that the functional aspect of the body has a tight range where enzymes work optimally, cells can communicate, and energy gets produced. A shift in the pH towards the acidic range will have a large effect on how the cells produce energy. Cellular energy is produced in a part called the mitochondria. An acid shift causes swelling in the mitochondria, hampering energy function and production, and increasing free radical production. The link with Parkinson’s’s disease, is that the factor that drives Parkinson’s Disease forward is free radical damage to the mitochondria in the substantia nigra, damaging the cells that produce dopamine in the brain.
One of the main issues with treating Parkinson’s Disease, is that it is hard to stop this progression because nutrients have to cross through the blood brain barrier, a very tight barrier between the brain and the blood stream that is highly selective in what is allowed to cross into the brain tissue. This makes it difficult to stop the propagation of free radical damage to the mitochondria. If you can change the pH of your blood and body tissues with an alkaline lifestyle, then it will likely help lower the acidic and free radical damage to the mitochondria in the substantia nigra.

I’m only just skimming this topic. If you are interested in learning what specific dietary recommendations are pertinent to your health, book a nutritional consultation with Dr. Abercrombie today. • 310-926-4415