Historical Archives Subject: Acid-Alkaline Balance

Honey in Nutrition

By William Miller

Summary: An excellent overview of the value of raw honey. Author William Miller compares the nutritional qualities of this extraordinary food, manufactured by bees for millions of years, to those of refined sugar. His conclusion? They’re complete opposites nutritionally, with honey providing vitamins, minerals, and other factors critical for life and white sugar providing nothing more than empty calories. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 119, 1955. Original source unknown.

Arm and Shoulder Pain

By Dr. George Goodheart

Summary: In this 1960 article, the “father of Applied Kinesiology,” Dr. George Goodheart, discusses chiropractic manipulations and nutritional support for treating pain in the shoulder area. One of the most common causes of such pain, he explains, is the precipitation of calcium out of the blood and into the tissues in and around the shoulder joint—a condition resulting usually from an overly alkaline state within the body. (For more on pH and health, see Dr. Goodheart’s excellent primer, “The Acid-Alkaline Balance and Patient Management.”) Other times, Dr. Goodheart says, discomfort in the shoulder is actually referred pain originating from dysfunction in the digestive organs, making nutritional support of the stomach, gallbladder, and liver critical to resolving the issue. Articles like these reveal the holistic understanding of the body’s function—and appreciation of the value of nutritional therapy—that have long distinguished chiropractic care within the healing arts. From the journal Michigan State Chiropractic Society, 1960. Reprinted by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research

The Acid-Alkaline Balance and Patient Management

By Dr. George Goodheart

Summary: If you’ve read anything at all about nutrition, you’ve likely heard of the importance of proper pH balance in the body. But what is meant by proper, and where in the body should one assess acid-alkaline balance? Blood, urine, saliva, gastric juices, intestinal fluids—each of these has its own ideal pH range varying from highly acidic to highly alkaline. Just how does a nutritionist make sense of pH and apply it practically? That’s the subject of this outstanding primer from 1965 by renowned chiropractor Dr. George Goodheart, who presents some of his clinical observations in balancing pH in patients. While “pH” does ultimately refer to the acid-alkaline balance of an individual’s blood, he says, one can assess that value simply be measuring the pH of the saliva, which mirrors blood pH. (Urine pH, on the other hand, does not reflect the pH of the blood.) And contrary to popular belief, he adds, diet alone is seldom sufficient to alter a person’s pH, which is far more dependent on the functioning of the endocrine system and the ability of the body to digest fats than it is on the foods the individual is eating. Dr. Goodheart discusses both chiropractic and nutritional means of addressing these issues while presenting some of the classic symptoms of hyperalkalinity—such as allergies, insomnia, and arthritic pain—as well as those of hyperacidity, including breathlessness, dry skin, and hard stool. By addressing endocrine imbalances and poor fat digestion in the patient, he says, these often mystifying symptoms can be readily resolved. From the Digest of Chiropractic Economics, 1965. Reprinted by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research

Acidophilus Yeast

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: In this primer on the benefits of lactic acid to digestion, Dr. Royal Lee explains the science behind his remarkable bowel-normalizing product Acidophilus Yeast (known today as Lactic Acid Yeast), which has the special distinction of being able to convert any dietary carbohydrate into lactic acid within the colon. Not only does this action acidify the bowel, thus killing potentially dangerous microorganisms and promoting balanced gut flora, but the yeast also releases enzymes that aid digestion, and it provides bulk to stool—all of which help ensure proper bowel function. Dr. Lee backs up his comments by presenting a clinical study showing Acidophilus Yeast’s impressive results in combating constipation, the researchers stating unequivocally the chief reason for the yeast’s effectiveness: “It has been demonstrated time and time again that the stools of patients who are constipated are, in a very large majority, alkaline…The lactic acid acts as a stabilizer of the hydrogen ion concentration in the colon.” With many alternative health practitioners today promoting indiscriminate alkalization of the body, the words of these investigators are well worth remembering. Published by Vitamin Products Company, circa 1940.

Guideposts to Mental Health

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Dr. Lee addresses some possible nutritional causes of mental distress. People who eat too many acidifying foods, such as whole grains, may become overly acidic, marked by symptoms of irritability, introversion, and the feeling of not getting enough air. People who eat too many alkalizing foods, such as green vegetables, on the other hand, may feel aches in their joints or a nervous stomach. Dr. Lee also quotes Dr. Benjamin Sandler‘s description of people who suffer from drastic swings in blood sugar: “Dizziness, faintness, nervousness, tremors, sweating, pallor, flushing, palpitation, tachycardia (rapid heart), abdominal pain, and psychoneurotic manifestations may occur,” Sandler says. To combat such sugar swings, Lee recommends—in words that speak to any nutrition practitioner today—to “avoid refined sugars as found in doughnuts, pies, cakes, ice cream, candy and other forms of sweets.” From Let’s Live magazine, 1958.

Guanidine, Cider Vinegar, and Health

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Dr. Royal Lee lauds Vermont physician Dr. D.C. Jarvis, author of the classic book on holistic health Folk Medicine. In particular, Lee praises Jarvis’s recommendation of apple cider vinegar as a natural remedy for a host of disorders, from guanidine toxicity as a result of the overconsumption of meat to a dysbiotic gut to constipation to low thyroid to overweight. (Two teaspoons of cider vinegar in a glass of water at each meal dependably effected gradual weight loss, Dr. Jarvis observed.) Dr. Lee discussing Dr. Jarvis is a must for any fan of nutrition, history, or both. From Let’s Live magazine, 1958.

The Dietary Regimen in the Treatment of Renal Calculi

By Charles C. Higgins, MD

Summary: Excerpts from a review of studies investigating the connection between vitamin A deficiency and renal calculi, or kidney stones. This is one of the earliest tracts showing the critical role of vitamin A in the health of the kidneys. Although pH is discussed, the main thrust of the report concerns studies—conducted in the U.S., Africa, China, and other parts of Asia—all reaching the conclusion that vitamin A deficiency leads to renal calculi and lesions. From The Journal-Lancet, 1938. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 5. 

Studies of a New Type of Yeast in Chronic Constipation

By Chester H. Lyon and James P. Hart

Summary: Perhaps the first published study of a probiotic supplement for the treatment of constipation and related bowel disorders. The researchers fed their subjects a special mycelium-type of yeast—developed by Dr. Royal Lee and known today as Lactic Acid Yeast—that converts carbohydrate foods into lactic acid in the colon. (The normal pH of the colon is acidic; this promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria and inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria.) Unlike lactobacillus-type bacteria, which can convert only lactose into lactic acid, Lactic Acid Yeast is able to convert any carbohydrate source into lactic acid. This efficient conversion restored the lower bowel to its normal pH and function and provided improvement in every parameter that was studied. Clinical Osteopathy, 1940. Reprint by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research. 

Acid-Base Balance of Diets That Produce Immunity to Dental Caries Among the South Sea Islanders and Other Primitive Races

By Dr. Weston A. Price 

Summary: The notion of “alkalizing” one’s diet—or eating foods that supposedly increase the pH within the body and thus optimize health—has been around as long as the science of nutrition itself. In this 1935 article, famed dentist and nutrition pioneer Dr. Weston A. Price debunks the hypothesis that an alkalizing diet helps prevent tooth decay. Citing data from his famous worldwide study of populations free of dental disease and other degenerative illness, Dr. Price states, “In no instance have I found the change from a high immunity to dental caries [cavities] to a high susceptibility…to be associated with a change from a diet with a high potential alkalinity to a high potential acidity.” In fact, he adds, his data show, if anything, that good tooth health is the result of an acidifying diet. Dr. Price further discounts the notion that an alkalizing diet promotes health in general and instead stresses the importance of eating whole foods rich in vitamins and minerals, particularly the fat-soluble vitamins so abundant in animal foods. From Dental Cosmos, 1935. Reprinted with permission from the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.

Vitamin F and Carbamide in Calcium Metabolism

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: An important article about two of the most overlooked nutritionally and biochemically essential substances in the human body. The roles of carbamide (a.k.a. urea) in denaturing proteins—and thus reducing their antigenicity—and of vitamin F (fatty acid complex) in defusing calcium bicarbonate (ionized calcium) into the cell fluids are virtually lost on orthodox medicine. Yet holistic doctors have repeatedly discovered this article since its publication in 1946 and been amazed at the clinical efficacy of the applied knowledge it presents. From Journal of the National Medical Society. Reprint 20, 1946.

The Prevention of Dental Caries and Oral Sepsis

By H.P. Pickerill, MD

Summary: Today we take cavities to be a given, as if the decay of human teeth were part of the natural order. Yet the rate of cavities in prehistoric human beings was extremely low, as is that of animals in the wild. Thus, tooth decay is not Nature’s work, but humankind’s. In fact, it is the most prevalent of the modern “diseases of civilization” (heart disease, diabetes, obesity, mental illness, etc.), and it has been since its rate exploded in industrial countries in the mid-nineteenth century. In 1912 Dr. Henry Pickerill, Director of the Dental School at the University of Otago, New Zealand, and leader in the investigation of dental health, released a book comprising a series of lectures he’d given over the period of 1906 to 1910. In the following excerpts from that book, Dr. Pickerill contrasts the diets of cavity-ridden, industrialized countries with those of various unindustrialized populations virtually immune to tooth decay. Though the latter groups differed wildly in their eating habits, from the practically carnivorous Eskimos to the fruit-and-root eaters of the Pacific islands, their diets all shared one thing in common: a complete lack of processed and refined foods. Unfortunately, Dr. Pickerill’s investigations occurred before the discovery of the vitamins. It wasn’t until 1923 that a young dental student, Dr. Royal Lee, would connect the dots between the professor’s works and studies of the recently discovered “vitamines” to conclude that tooth decay—and, in fact, all the diseases of civilization—were the result of systemic nutrient deficiency, caused by the mass consumption of industrialized foods. Today, despite a century of brushing and flossing, tooth decay remains as prevalent as it was in Dr. Pickerill’s time, and unless we return to a diet of only unadulterated organic foods, cavities will remain unnaturally common. Published by Bailliere, Tindall and Cox, London, 1912. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 132.

Practical Methods in Preparing Health-Building Foods

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Dr. Royal Lee cooks! In this article the great nutritionist describes nutrient-conserving methods of preparing meats, vegetables, grains, and fruits. He strongly urges using only organically grown foods and reminds readers to eat acidifying and alkalizing foods in relatively equal amounts. “Cereals and grains are all acid. Root and leaf vegetables are all alkalline. Meat and fish are acid. Fruits may be either—apple and grape are most neutral.” Publication source and date unknown.

Nutrition and Arthritis

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: In this monumental 1952 pamphlet, Dr. Royal Lee argues that arthritis is the direct result of nutrient deficiencies brought about by the overconsumption of cooked and processed foods. Insufficient intake of vitamins A, C, and G; various minerals; and the woefully forgotten Wulzen factor—an “anti-stiffness” agent for joints found in raw sugarcane juice and raw cream—all help contribute to the disease, Dr. Lee writes. (Interestingly, while raw cream was shown to prevent joint stiffness in test animals, pasteurized cream provided no such protection, which may explain why arthritis became epidemic in the USA after food processors began pasteurizing the nation’s milk supply.) Dr. Lee not only shows how these deficiencies lead to the arthritis-inducing conditions of acidosis and toxic bowel, he also delineates precise supplement protocols to reverse the arthritic condition, featuring his famous raw food concentrate formulas Betalco and Minaplex (known today as Betacol and Organically Bound Minerals). Dr. Lee also backs up his ideas with several carefully documented case studies showing how patients reversed crippling cases of arthritis using his protocol. This compilation is a tour de force of nutritional therapy—indispensable for all health practitioners and anyone else interested in restoring wellness through diet. From the Vitamin Products Company, 1952.