Acidity leads to disease

Posted by Melissa Callaghan on



Acidity leads to disease

Acidic food and Alkalising food have a huge impact on your body. Both can do damage when taken to the extreme. 

This is why it is essential for your body to maintain a balance. 

It does this by being a BUFFER.  A diet that is high in acidic foods can lead to many chronic health conditions that affect the entire body. (Details to follow)

What is a buffer I hear you say? If you are a mother with kids you might feel like a buffer between them when one is being not so nice to the other. It gets pretty exhausting doesn't it?  The body also gets a bit exhausted sometimes trying to keep the peace too.

A buffer in chemistry is a solution which resists changes in pH keeping balance (keeping the peace) when acid or alkaline is added to it (through food and toxins).

Basically you have this amazing system in your body that helps keep it balanced by balancing the pH of your blood and preventing any radical change when you overdo it.

How do you want your blood to be?



It's a very tight balance

Who are the helpers?

Your lungs

Our respiratory system is a buffer which balances pH in minutes by eliminating carbon dioxide from the body, this is a mild acid which the body produces from metabolising oxygen and nutrients which your body needs to function. 

Your kidneys

Your renal system is very complex and often not give too much thanks for the massive jobs it does and often are pushed to the limits until they just give up. Your kidneys eliminate hydrogen ions and conserve bicarbonate, this is a process that takes hours and it is a delicate balance. Also it can only eliminate so much at a time and the rest of the acid just has to wait in your body until it gets a turn to be eliminated. (Doing alot of damage while it waits too mind you). 

Your blood

There are a few buffer systems in your blood.

Most of the buffering in the blood is done by proteins which are made up of amino acids and are both positively and negatively charged and can therefore bind to both the acids and alkalines. They do this in the blood as well as at a cellular level. 

Haemaglobin which is the main protein in red blood cells also plays a role mainly in the conversion of carbon dioxide by buffering the liberation of hydrogen ions. Yeah there is no easy way to explain that one.

Phosphates are found in your blood and there are two forms one is a weak acid and the other is a weak base (alkaline). The process by which this buffers is a little more involved but basically it looks like this:

HCl + Na2HPO4→NaH2PO4 + NaCl
(strong acid) + (weak base) → (weak acid) + (salt)
NaOH + NaH2PO4→Na2HPO4 + H2O
(strong base) + (weak acid) → (weak base) + (water)
Then there is the Bicarbonate-Carbonic Acid buffer which is very similar to the above one and looks like this.
NaHCO3 + HCl →  H2CO3+NaCl
(sodium bicarbonate) + (strong acid) → (weak acid) + (salt)
H2CO3 + NaOH→HCO3- + H2O
(weak acid) + (strong base)→(bicarbonate) + (water)

Well that is way too much science for today.

What does it mean for me and my body?

One of the most important factors to understand is that acidity can lead to chronic diseases. We need to maintain a balanced alkaline body pH as this is our first line of defense against aging and disease. 

In order for the cells in our body to function effectively our body needs to be slightly alkaline.  When cells perform their tasks to give energy to function there is acidic waste left over that needs to be eliminated and if you combine this with a highly acidic diet then the body has so much extra work to do and can't keep up leading to a toxic environment.

A major mechanism to understand is that when the body feels it needs to protect its organs against the constant supply of damaging acids from food the body then produces fat cells so it can pack some of the acid waste into them leading to weight gain that is difficult to budge.

There are also studies showing that mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression can be connected to an imbalance in your bodies pH levels. 

Some signs that the body is too acidic are:

  • fatigued even with sleep
  • weight gain
  • difficulty losing weight
  • confusion
  • shortness of breath
  • headaches
  • lack of appetite/no hunger signal
  • increased heart rate/palpitations
  • irritable for no reason
  • frequent infections, colds and flus
  • dry skin
  • acne at any age
  • hormonal imbalances
  • frequent yeast infections
  • joint pain and pain in general
  • chronic allergies and sinus pain
  • sensitive teeth and gums

All systems of the body are affected by over consumption of acidic foods. 

Brain - clinical researcher Dr Neal Barnard states that the consumption of fats from animals which is highly acidic can contribute to the formation of beta amyloid plaques in the brain. These plaques lead to neuro degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's. 

Bones - to maintain a balanced pH the body needs calcium.  This is one of the major reasons why calcium is taken from out bones is to help maintain balance when the body becomes too acidic. It takes calcium from bones, teeth, and even tissues depleting our alkaline reserves that had been stored. 

Lungs - acidic foods are mucous forming.  Ever noticed that persistent cough (often in the morning) this is the bodys way of eliminating acidic waste.  It produces the mucous to move the acid through the body and move it out of the body. This can lead to persistent conditions such as sinus issues, coughing, breathing difficulty, even fatigue. 

Heart - acidic foods are not completely absorbed. Alot of it gets absorbed into the blood stream as acid waste to be eliminated. This puts alot of extra pressure on the cardiovascular system. Research has shown that increased acid leads to pulmonary vasoconstriction leading to pulmonary hypertension. It can also lead to an increase in plaque formation and inflammation, restricting blood flow. If these plaques dislodge this can lead to heart attack or stroke. 

Liver - the liver and the pancreas are alkaline organs and when there is too much acid in the body it has a large impact on these organs. A high level of acidity can not only impact on these organs and their function but also impact on surrounding organs leading to gall stones, ulcers, inflammation and even cancer. 

Kidney - the above process with the liver impacts directly on the kidneys. The kidneys role is to eliminate acid from the body and when there is too much in the body there is increased demand for the kidneys to get rid of more and it can only do so much at one time, leading to a back up in the body as well as higher risk of producing kidney stones. Uric acid stones are formed as a direct result of the urine being persistently acidic and this is DIRECTLY related to eating acidic foods.

Intestines - the body is not able to absorb all of the acidic food, leaving it to be eliminated, as this food can't be broken down it putrefies leading to more acid production and increased inflammation of the intestines. This is directly related to nutrient deficiencies leading to a depressed immune system and irritable bowel issues and an overgrowth in bad bacteria such as Candida providing an environment for them to thrive. 

Skin - if your internal organs are struggling with eliminating acid from the body then this can often be directly reflected on your skin. This can be seen in eczema, dermatitis, rashes, and acne. This is mainly due to the breeding ground that has been created in you gut. 

Once I assess patients blood test results and ask multiple questions I can get an understanding of the level of acidity in the body and a treatment plan can be created. When you are showing signs and symptoms it is near impossible to catch up on your own.  You would be looking at consuming around 3 kilos of green veggies a day to even come close to reversing the damage. 

Repair work and catching up is needed

This is where I come in as a Naturopath.  I will create a treatment plan for you to repair gastro intestinal linings and improve acid levels as well as help the liver and kidneys to catch up and give them a break as they are probably overworked and we can help them with the right nutrient and herbal support to function effectively. 

This is done using Compounded powder so full of nutrients as well as herbal medicine and getting your food choices back on the right path to improve your metabolic balance.

Once you have repaired your gut and caught up on alkalising your body then you will be able to do all of this on your own and you wont need me. 

An acidic body leads to inflammation which can cause your immune system to become out of control and even begin to attack itself, this is called auto immune.  Reducing your acidity and toxic load will help to reduce your inflammation and help your body reach balance. 


I'm here to help you catch up and get you to a place where you can do it by yourself.

Who am I?

I am a Bachelor qualified Naturopath and Nutritionist who specialises in improving metabolic processes in the body. Major areas for improvement include gut, thyroid, kidney, skin and liver health. Conditions such as hypothyroidism, fatty liver, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, type II diabetes, & irritable bowel conditions. I help my patients by giving them symptomatic relief while working on repairing the underlying causes of metabolic stress and waste accumulation. Patients experience amazing results which are seen in their blood tests with improved thyroid markers, cholesterol, and liver markers.  As well as lower blood pressure and see relief from improved gastrointestinal symptoms like the ones that mean you need to know where every single toilet is before you leave the house. 

Melissa Callaghan BHSc, BTeach
Clinical Naturopath


To book an appointment click here 

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