13383253-green-smoothieBone is a living system of the body, in which bones cells are constantly being broken down and rebuilt. When there is excessive bone breakdown without adequate rebuilding, bone loss occurs and your bones become weak and fragile.  Everyone understands the role that bones play in the supporting skeletal system of the body, but bones also play an important metabolic role in the body.

Bones contain a massive reserve of alkaline minerals which help to buffer excessive acid in the body. Buffers are substances that help maintain a balance of acid and alkaline in the body.  The acid/alkaline balance is measured through pH.  The pH scale ranges 0-14, where 7 is neutral, over 7 is considered alkaline and below 7 considered acidic. For proper function, the body continually strives to balance the pH of the blood at a slightly alkaline level of 7.45.

The two most common disruptors of pH come from the acids generated through daily metabolism and those through the food and drink your ingest. When you consume foods and liquids, the end products of their digestion and assimilation of nutrients can have an acid or alkaline-forming effect, sometimes called an acid or alkaline ash. In response to the excessive acid or alkaline production, the body uses a complex system of buffers to restore and maintain the proper pH.

One of these buffer systems entails borrowing alkaline minerals, such as calcium, sodium, potassium and magnesium, from bones to buffer the acid and remove it from the body. This is how, over time, a diet high in acid producing foods can cause the loss of key minerals from the bone and stimulate bone breakdown leading to weakened bones and osteoporosis.  Eating acid forming foods such as sugar, coffee, meat, pasta and bread, will stimulate the leeching of alkaline minerals from the bone to buffer the acidic ash. Eating an alkaline diet can help shift the acid-base balance in the alkaline direction and be useful in stopping and reversing bone loss.

Another way an alkaline diet benefits bone health may be increasing growth hormone and osteocalcin, a hormone that promotes bone mineralization. A diet high in alkaline minerals, such as found in fruits and vegetables, reducing the acid load has also be shown to result in preservation of muscle mass in older men and women. Maintaining appropriate muscle mass as we age may help prevent falls and fractures.

You can review the Alkaline-Acid food chart to learn about what foods are more acidic or alkaline once ingested.  I recommend a daily dietary intake in which 75%  of the foods you eat are alkaline, 20% are mild and moderate acidic foods and 5% or less are acidic foods.

Take the Online Quiz to determine your risk bone loss than contact me for a free consult or  more information on how to balance your diet to promote bone health, not bone loss!

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by Susan Brady

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