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Acid –Alkaline Imbalance and the role in chronic Disease conditions such as osteoporosis, and Gastro-Intestinal Health

Stress, lack of alkaline substances in the diet, toxins, medications, chronic illness, gut health and compromised lung function are some of the possible contributing factors to the acid – alkaline imbalance which can be linked to cellular degeneration and evolution of chronic and acute disease conditions.

If the PH of tissue is acidic, osteoclasts (cells which break down bones) are activated and osteoblasts (cells which build up bones) are inhibited. PH directly affects bone metabolism. Bone structure is the unfortunate buffering system to keep the homeostasis of blood PH in balance first and foremost among everything else.

The stomach’s role in trying to deal with this burden is to make sodium bicarbonate to release into the blood thus reducing the amount available to the pancreas, liver and small intestine for the digestion and metabolism of foods. Sodium bicarbonate is required for the end product of foods and when this ratio is disrupted excess acids occur and are associated with intestinal disorders, heartburn, acid reflux, dysbiosis, food intolerances, and inflammation in the gut.

Neutralizing blood PH with sodium bicarbonate is just a temporary solution; the other pathway the body will utilize is storage of acids in the extracellular matrix or connective tissues. And over time this disrupts the ionic charge of molecules and disrupt the transport of hormones, minerals and leads to nerve depolarization. Pain neurons are activated when these cells become acidic and thus physiology and cell metabolism are impaired. Symptoms such as pain, fatigue, hormonal problems, swelling, potassium deficiency and inflammation ensue.

The kidneys role in the acid alkaline balance is to excrete excess acids, but as we age the function of the kidneys slow down and hence other pathways mentioned above are enabled. The body’s ability to create balance is an imperfect system, if not a viable temporary solution to the stress of imbalance.

Reversing the build up of acids in the body and restoring the balance requires diet modification, increased supplementation, decreasing stress response, and detoxification of the extracellular matrix. Diet alone cannot reverse a case of latent acidosis. Vitamins and minerals in correct dosage are the catalysts and co factors necessary to improve quality of life.



Bushinsky, D.A. (2001) Acid-base imbalance and the skeleton. Eur J Nutr 40: 238-244.

Bushinsky, D.A. (2004) Acid-base balance and bone health. In Holick, M.F. and Dawson-Hughes, B. eds. Nutrition and Bone Health. p. 279-304. New Jersey: Humana Press.

New.S (2002. Role of the skeleton in acid-base homeoatatis. Proc. Nutr. Soc.61: 151-164.

Mueller-Wieprecht. V (2005) The influence of large intestine flora on acid –base balance in the bodt . Acta.Biologica XIIV NO I.


About Firstline Nutrition

Health practitioners who have years of experience in the natural medicine field. We provide health supplements and vitamins to support healthy living. Our articles are researched and talk about the products we carry.

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