Claiming to restore the body to its optimum state, the alkaline diet is filled with nutritionally rich food devoid of refined sugar, gluten, cow’s dairy and meat. Glowing A-listers from Elle Macpherson to Miranda Kerr credit alkaline eating as one of their secrets to maintaining a healthy physique. When managed successfully, this lifestyle can leave our bodies feeling lighter, cleaner and bursting with energy. Intrigued? Us too, and the best thing is it’s super simple to follow! Here are 10 ways to alkalize the body naturally…
Start The Day Right
Speak to any nutrition expert with glowing skin and we can guarantee they will say they start their day with a glass of warm water and lemon. Despite their acidic reputation, citrus fruits actually help clear the body of excess acids and create an alkaline forming state. Try to drink this combination within half an hour of waking to give your digestive system a kick-start before breakfast.
Eat Your Greens
Fresh vegetables should make up 70% of your daily food intake and filling your plate with leafy greens has countless benefits. Among the best sources of essential vitamins, antioxidants and minerals, these nutritional powerhouses are also filled with chlorophyll, a potent alkaliser and blood builder. Add spinach to your smoothies, kale to your salads and broccoli to stir fries for an instant energy boost. Leafy greens have also been proven to improve sleep quality, so expect a good nights rest.
It will come as no surprise that refined sugar is one of the most acid forming substances for the body. All refined sugars cause inflammation and raise acidity levels, so try and swap your sweet treat for a healthier alternative. Be sure to cut down on fizzy drinks and fruit juices unless freshly processed in small quantities.
It is not only what you eat that can cause the body to become out of sync – stress is highly acid forming. When the body moves into ‘panic mode,’ this causes the digestive system to shut down and cease to eliminate toxins. Try adding a yoga class to your workout routine, deep tummy breathing or download a meditation app to help reduce the effects of stress.
Less Meat, More Veggies
Meat is amongst the most acid forming foods, with red meat particularly high on the scale. It is not only difficult to digest, but recent studies have shown we are eating far more animal products than our body can break down. Try #meatfreemonday as an excuse to experiment in the kitchen and add more vegetarian meals into your diet.
Go Honestly Healthy
Widely credited with bringing the alkaline way of eating to the UK, Honestly Healthy’s Natasha Corrett discovered alkaline eating after visiting an acupuncturist for health issues. After being informed her body was extremely acidic, the 21 day alkaline cleanse she partook in has now inspired three bestselling books, an app and more, all ideal for those looking for an easy guide to alkaline eating.
Eat Your Fats
Avocado fans rejoice, the creamy favourite is one of the highest on the alkaline scale. This nutrient-dense superfood is filled with key antioxidants that have serious anti-inflammatory, heart health and blood sugar regulating benefits. Furthermore, the high-density of omega oils speed up the metabolism, leading to weight loss. Add to smoothies or mash it up for a creamy toast topping.
Keeping the body hydrated is essential for maintaining an alkaline state, so try to drink at least two litres of water a day to flush out toxins, improve all bodily functions (and even help you lose weight). However, try to ensure you have a filter to hand as regular tap water is filled with harmful chlorides. For an even better alkalising effect add a pinch of Himalayan Sea Salt to your glass.
Exercise helps to get your digestion moving so your body can eliminate acidic waste products more efficiently. However take note cardio fans, excessive exercise can actually have the opposite effect due to causing a rise in stress levels, so try not to overdo it. Instead opt for a few yoga classes per week alongside your HIIT.
Caffeine, Refined sugar, alcohol and processed foods are filled with harmful, acidic chemicals that do no favours for your body (or skin for that matter). Instead fill your cupboards with fresh produce and notice the change in how you feel. Additionally, try to cook as much as you can from scratch, as this means you know everything that is going into your body. If you’re stuck for time, we swear by a Sunday prep session to keep you going all week.
By Harriet Tisdall