By Jenny Marchal | Life Hack
Do you constantly feel tired and worn down? Do you find you need stimulants like coffee to get you through the morning or even generally throughout the day? Your first go-to solution may well be to get more sleep but what if you get your 8 hours a night and still feel fatigued when your alarm goes off?
The answer could be a condition that many people suffer from but are unaware of, and it’s called adrenal fatigue. It can be easily misdiagnosed by doctors due to the different ways it can manifest usually as general irritability, feelings of unhappiness and depression. In fact, it’s estimated that nearly 80% of people experience adrenal fatigue in their lifetime but never have it diagnosed.
Adrenal fatigue is caused by a number of things including prolonged stress that activates the adrenal glands that get overworked and consequently affecting the natural chemical balance within the body. However, there is one major cause that often gets overlooked and that’s the important pH levels within our blood.
How Does Blood pH Levels Cause Adrenal Fatigue?
Everyone has an ideal pH level for their blood and it sits around 7.35. A drop or increase can have a huge affect on how we function day-to-day so our bodies go to great lengths to keep the pH balance just right!
The main problem comes when the acid levels increase too much – this is called acidosis and can be caused by what you eat and drink. The red blood cells in your body happily move around transporting oxygen to each cell and to do this they need to have a negative charge in order to repel each other and keep separate.
This helps them move through tiny capillaries easily and efficiently but when there is too much acid present, it starts messing with this important negative charge resulting in blood not flowing easily and oxygen not being delivered to a consistent standard.
This also weakens the red blood cells meaning they can die off, which in turn produces more acid. The point of all this is that your energy levels decrease more and more over time, resulting in chronic fatigue that sleep just can’t solve.
How Does What You Eat Affect Your Blood pH Levels?
You’ll be surprised to know that it’s not always obvious foods and drinks that cause your pH levels to become acidic. There are many unassuming foods we put into our bodies that can have a bad affect on our blood so don’t think the acidic orange juice you drink is a direct cause. Here’s why.
Whatever we eat, the acid secreted into our stomachs that helps breakdown food is important. However, once digestion is over, it’s the residual acid or alkaline from the food that is passed into the blood. Foods and beverages such as coffee, alcohol and animal protein all leave an acidic residue that the body absorbs. Even some seafood such as scallops can be one of the most acidic foods you can eat – something you didn’t attribute your tiredness to!
What Ways Can I Increase My Alkaline pH Levels?
The most effective way to combat high acidic pH levels is to eat foods that are highly alkaline. It’s important to understand what kinds of foods and drinks provide the alkaline residue needed to lower acid levels. This doesn’t mean banning acidic foods altogether from your diet but gradually eliminating one or two types of food at a time to see how much of a difference it makes to your overall tiredness.
Learning the different pH levels of food is key to tweaking your diet.
- Food groups that increase acidity: meat and poultry (animal protein), fish, dairy, eggs, grains and alcohol.
- Foods that increase alkalinity levels: fruits, nuts, legumes and vegetables (plant proteins).
- Foods that have neutral pH levels: natural fats, starches and sugars.