Although the alkaline diet may seem like the latest celebrity craze, you shouldn’t dismiss it so quickly. Forget how you feel about Victoria Beckham and stand by while we break it down.
Alkaline eating is actually a powerful tool against diseases, including cancer. It’s controversial in the medical community since it’s difficult to measure its success.
That’s because every system in your body has its own ideal pH levels and many people misunderstand how the diet works.
However, many others swear by the alkaline diet as a way to stay healthy and increase energy. If you want to experience its benefits firsthand, here is the 7-day alkaline diet plan for you!
Why Go Alkaline
First of all, the alkaline diet can help you lose weight and improve your overall health. In particular, it can be beneficial in treating inflammation, arthritis, and cancer (1). High sugar and high fats foods are acidic, meaning that they slightly elevate the acidity of your blood. In response, your body has to leach minerals from your bones and organs to reestablish its rightful pH value of 7,4 (2).
Acidosis, or high acidity, can lead to diseases like multiple sclerosis, arrhythmia, immunodeficiency disorders, joint pain, and lethargy (3). This is partly because acidity promotes inflammation. Inflammation, in turn, can contribute to conditions like cancer (4).
The Benefits of an Alkaline Diet
pH levels measures how acid or alkaline something is. On the pH scale, 0 is totally acidic, while 14 is completely alkaline. On the other hand,7 is neutral.
The systems in your body each have their own ideal pH level. Small fluctuations in this balance can have devastating effects.
To give you an idea, your blood is on the alkaline side, with a pH between 7.35 and 7.45.
In contrast, your stomach acid needs to have a pH of 3.5 or below to properly break down food.
Urine, on the other hand, changes its pH value to make sure your blood stays at its peak.
The alkaline diet is based on the belief that the modern diet includes plenty of acidic foods that promote inflammation and disease. Therefore, it increases your intake of alkaline foods to balance out your pH.
In turn, this helps protect against kidney stones, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and weak bones.
It’s also said to improve energy levels and memory and help prevent headaches, bloating, heart disease, muscle pain, and insomnia.
What it Takes
The Honestly Healthy Alkaline Programme, started by nutritional therapist Vicki Edgson and organic chef Natasha Corrett, explain that the goal is to keep your pH between 7.35 and 7.45.
They say you can achieve this by eating 80 per cent alkaline foods and 20 percent acidic foods (7).
Here are the basics of what you can and can’t eat:
Dos: most fruits, vegetables, soybeans and tofu, and some nuts, seeds, peas, beans, and legumes.
Also, eat plenty of healthy fats like coconut oil, flaxseed oil, and olive oil.
Alkaline musts include:
“Don’ts” include dairy, eggs, meat, most grains, alcohol, caffeine, sugar, and processed foods. It’s also important to avoid processed corn, soy, safflower and sunflower oils as well as hydrogenated oil and margarine.
You can find out you pH value by examining the levels in your urine (8).
Read on to find out how to get started on your alkaline diet plan.
7-Day Alkaline Diet Plan
Follow this alkaline diet plan to level out your pH levels, and improve your wellbeing.
Breakfast: Chia and strawberry quinoa
Snack: an orange
Lunch: Sweet and savory salad
Snack: 1/2 cup toasted nuts and dried fruits
Dinner: 3-4 oz. roasted chicken with roasted sweet potatoes & parsnips
Simple green salad with olive oil and apple cider vinegar.
Chia and Strawberry Quinoa
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 5 tbsp. chia seeds
- 1 ½ cup coconut milk
- ½ cup quartered strawberries + 4 sliced strawberries
- 2 pitted dates
- 2 tbsp. chopped almonds and unsweetened shredded coconut flakes
- The night before, cook quinoa and prepare a puree made of, coconut milk, and dates using a blender.
- Pour the mixture into a jar, add chia seeds and mix well.
- Cover with lid and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning, place chia seeds in your bowl, add the quinoa and toppings!
Sweet and Savory Salad
- 1 large head of butter lettuce, washed
- ½ cucumber, sliced
- 1 pomegranate, seeded or 1/3 cup seeds
- 1 avocado, cubed
- ¼ cup shelled pistachios, chopped
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- Tear the butter lettuce into a salad bowl.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and toss with the salad dressing
Roasted Sweet Potatoes & Parsnips
- 1 1/4 pounds parsnips
- 1 1/4 pounds sweet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch thick pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Chopped parsley
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Peel and cut parsnips.
- On a large rimmed baking sheet toss parsnips and sweet potatoes with oil and season with salt and pepper.
- Spread in a single layer and roast until tender and golden, about 30 minutes.
- Transfer to a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, stir together maple syrup and mustard.
- Pour over vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Breakfast: vegan apple parfait
Snack: 1 pear
Lunch: Savory avocado wraps and white Bean Stew
Snack: 1 Handful of toasted pumpkin seeds
Dinner: 3-4 oz. roasted chicken with roasted Brussels sprouts with red peppers
Simple cucumber salad with olive oil and apple cider vinegar.
Vegan Apple Parfait
- ½ cup soaked raw cashews (soak 20 mins-1 hour)
- ½ cup unsweetened coconut milk
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped apple
- 1/3 cup rolled oats, uncooked
- 1 tbsp. hemp seeds
- Combine cashews, coconut milk, and vanilla in a blender.
- Blend until smooth.
- Layer ingredients in a small cup, with the cashew cream at the bottom, the apples in the middle, and the oats and hemp seeds on the top.
Savory Avocado Wrap
- 1 butter lettuce or collard leaf bunch
- ½ avocado
- 1 tsp. chopped basil
- Small handful of spinach
- 1 tsp. cilantro, chopped
- ¼ red onion, diced
- 1 tomato, sliced or chopped
- Sea salt & pepper
- Spread avocado onto the leaf and add the toppings. Fold in half and enjoy!
White Bean Stew
- 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/4 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 14 to 15 ounces of tomatoes
- 1 3/4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 2 (19-ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (3 cups)
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 (5-ounce) bag baby arugula (10 cups loosely packed)
- 8 (3/4-inch-thick) slices baguette
- Cook garlic in 1/4 cup oil in a 3 1/2- to 4 1/2-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Coarsely cut up tomatoes then add to the oil.
- Stir in broth, beans, and pepper and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes.
- Stir in greens and cook until wilted, about 1-3 minutes.
Brussels Sprouts with Red Peppers
- 1 ½ pounds brussels sprouts, preferably small ones
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium red bell pepper, cut in small dices
- 2 plump garlic cloves (to taste), minced
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped or grated lemon zest
- 1 to 2 tablespoons finely chopped mint (to taste)
- Trim brussels sprouts at the base, remove unattached leaves and set them aside.
- Cut in half and place in a large bowl. Toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt.
- Heat oven to 400 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy skillet (cast iron is ideal).
- Add as many brussels sprout halves as will fit in a single layer, cut side down, and sear until nicely browned, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Transfer to baking sheet, cut side down and repeat with remaining sprouts. Place baking sheet in oven and roast until sprouts are tender, another 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a pan over medium heat and add red pepper. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to a minute.
- Add roasted brussels sprouts to pan, stir together and add lemon zest, mint and freshly ground pepper. Heat through, taste and adjust seasonings.
- Remove from heat and serve.
Breakfast: Berry Purple Smoothie
Snack: 1 mango
Lunch: Asian Sesame Dressing and Noodles
Snack: a handful of dried apricot
Dinner: 4 oz. oven-roasted salmon, ½ baked sweet potato, curried beets and greens
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 2 cups homemade almond milk
- 1 cup of frozen mixed berries, strawberries
- 1 banana (peeled and frozen)
- 4 tbsp. raw almond butter
- 1 tbsp. chia
- Blend spinach and almond milk first.
- Add remaining ingredients other than the chia, and blend.
- Add chia once all is smooth and then blend at a low speed.
- Let sit for a few minutes for the chia seeds to expand, then enjoy.
Chicken Sesame Noodle Salad
For the dressing:
- ½ cup coconut oil
- 2 large cloves garlic, peeled
- ⅓ cup soy sauce
- ¼ cup white distilled vinegar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- a few squeezes of lime juice
- ¼ cup natural peanut butter
For the salad:
- 4 ounces brown rice noodles
- 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 5-6 cups baby kale or spinach
- 3 large carrots, cut into small, thin pieces
- 3 bell peppers, cut into small, thin pieces
- 1 cup packed cilantro leaves, chopped
- 4 green onions, green parts only, chopped
- ½ cup cashews or peanuts
- Start soaking the rice noodles in a bowl of cold water.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Pulse all the dressing ingredients except the peanut butter in a food processor.
- Place the chicken in a plastic bag and use about ¼ to ½ cup of the peanut butter-free dressing to marinate the refrigerated chicken for about 15-30 minutes.
- Add the peanut butter to the dressing in the food processor; pulse, taste and set aside.
- Prep all your veggies and toss together in a bowl.
- Bake the marinated chicken for 15-20 minutes. Let it cool for 5-10 minutes, slice, and add to the veggie mixture.
- Drain the softened noodles and finish cooking them in a skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add a little oil and a little dressing and toss them around until they are soft. Add water if necessary
- Toss stir-fried noodles with the chicken and veggie mixture.
- Garnish with crushed peanuts and cilantro and serve.