Splash and Crunch: the first step!
“Everything I like is either fattening, ageing, expensive, to name but a few!” My nutrition articles, past and present are generally all about “getting back to basics” and recently with a little “over the top glamour” from Arabian Silver to spice things up. Antics aside, I have been meaning to overhaul my nutrition habits, which have slipped a little, and turn on the taps, open a few bottles and go for a swim through the pages of alkaline diet research.
Normal blood pH is around 7.35 to 7.45 and we can influence this value by what we eat, drink, how our body systems function and the infections we pick up. Keeping blood pH at a healthy level is believed to combat illness both short and long term.
Diet and lifestyle play an important part in keeping blood pH at an optimum level in addition to controlling body fluids and organs operating for best performance. Lesson number 1 to every nutritionist is to keep the body well hydrated, which wards off tiredness, manages feeling full for longer, plumps up the skin, particularly interesting for beauty and make-up enthusiasts battling every girls nightmare: wrinkles!!
Water will have different tastes depending on its mineral content such as magnesium and calcium. Soft water (low in minerals) will be low in pH, whereas hard water (high in minerals) will be higher in pH. The variance in pH between soft and hard water is minimal, however mindful of pH in food and drink is a positive approach to better nutrition.
I find when I cut back on coffee, tea, alcohol, processed sugar, salt, grains and fatty foods I have so much more energy. The trouble is this food can dangerously creep into my lifestyle and before I know it I’m looking to max out on everything I like whether good or bad. It’s either “all or nothing”, and I find a lot of people I talk to are the same. The only option I have is to introduce a “detox programme”, which generally starts with water therapy. A big glass of water before every meal works a treat as it fills me up and keeps motivation going to choose healthy choices. The next step is to eat plant based fibre. I don’t go on “fruit avoidance” detox programmes, as I find this unnecessary, limiting and deprived. I love chopped apples before a meal, as a starter. I put anything on chopped apples like low fat dressing (to be expanded on a later blog), two-teaspoons of dried parmesan cheese, yoghurt and spices. Once you’re through a starter portion of chopped apples and this dressing, believe me you feel full.
I find changing habits little by little is key to success on staying healthy. This is by no means a “full blown detox programme”, I personally can never stick to strict detox diets which I have tried that I’ve read about and can never give up all the “nice stuff”, but introducing more water and apples definitely works a treat to get you started on a life long nutrition programme, which runs with 80/20 mentality.
Happy drinking, happy crunching, talk soon!!
Carolyn Heaton BSc