pH and Kidney Stones
What if you woke up at 2 am in the morning with a severe cramp in your back about where your kidneys are? Another symptom could be you feel like you have to urinate all of the time but can’t when you try.
I have had patients ask me this question many times in my 10 years of practice. When a kidney stone is diagnosed, passed or operated on, I am told, if it is a lady that experienced this event, it is worse than child birth.
Kidney stones happen commonly in Texas since it is easy to get repeatedly dehydrated in this hot dry climate. Florida is also noted for major dehydration and other hot places as well. It can and does happen in any state or country. People do not usually drink near enough water until they are thirsty and by then it’s too late for proper hydration. If it is not water they drink, then it is really too late. Nothing cleanses and hydrates like water. Many drink coke or other soft drinks, coffee, tea, sports drinks, which contain enormous amounts of sugar, artificial sweeteners and many additives etc.
Soda has phosphorylating substances to buffer the carbonic acid that creates the fizz in soft drinks. Just as the body operates well in the narrow range of body temperature around 98.6, the body pH is also very important. For example, higher or lower temperatures make one not feel well. Three or four degrees higher and you have serious problems and if prolonged can cause death.
Let’s look at the body’s pH level. On this scale, 0 is the most acid, 7 is neutral and 14 is the most alkaline. Your body prefers a slightly alkaline pH level between 7.365 and 7.390. Anything outside this range causes stress and pushes us towards the General Adaptation Syndrome Hans Selye. The farther you go outside this range the more it causes the body’s stress to go up exponentially.
The distance from the neutral pH value of 7 is not just numeric, it logarithmic. That means each number is exponentially more acidic or alkaline the further you get from 7. A pH reading of 6 is 10 times more acidic than 7, but a pH of 4 is a thousand times more acidic than 7. So a small change in pH makes a huge change in your body.
Let’s take a look at soft drinks and their acidity. They not only have phosphoric acid but many have citric acid, malic acid and tartaric acid as well. pH examples: the pH of Coke is 2.52, Diet Coke is 3.28, Pepsi 2.53 and Dr Pepper is 2.89. Examples of the non-cola drinks are: Mountain Dew is 3.22, Diet Mountain Dew is 3.66, 7 Up is 3.22, Diet 7 Up 3.77 and Squirt is 2.89. The more you drink of these substances the more acid you become.
Distilled water and properly prepared reverse osmosis water has a pH of 7. That means your can of cola is tens of thousands of times more acidic than this water. For another example, Battery acid is a 1. If you put baking soda in it, of course it will not work at all because it makes it alkaline and you no longer have the effect you need to start and run your car.
It is the same in your body. When you consume highly acidic drinks, it has a huge negative impact on your system. Your body will use its alkaline minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium to neutralize the acid to try to return your pH to normal. Robbing these minerals upsets another balance, the one in your bloodstream. Now this causes enormous problems in your entire health. We teach how to interpret blood tests in our Functional Evaluation Seminars.
Phosphoric acid enhances the absorption of carbon dioxide to keep your soda fizzy. This increased amount of incoming phosphorus from soda with zero calcium, causes the calcium levels in the blood to decline. This triggers your body to dissolve calcium from the bones to restore this balance.
You almost always dissolve more calcium than is necessary, which can then form kidney stones. The high fructose corn syrup from soda also raises uric acid. If it crystallizes, it forms a different kind of kidney stone.
Energy drinks, sports drinks, tea and coffee are not good substitutes either since they are acid forming too. NSAID painkillers and most pharmaceutical drugs are also acid-forming.
If you want to prevent kidney stones and a lot of other health problems, drink lots of water to where you need to urinate every hour. We need to consume 3 to 4 quarts per day in most circumstances and eat lots of vegetables!