To Your Health
May, 2010 (Vol. 04, Issue 05)
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The S.A.D. Truth About Weight Gain

It's Time to Break Free of the Disease Diet

By Dr. Donald L. Hayes

Are you familiar with the Standard American Diet? You may not know the term, but chances are you or someone you know has experience with it and may be suffering the consequences. If you were to list the factors that increase the risk of weight gain, cancer, heart disease, stroke, intestinal disorders - just about any illness, in fact - the Standard American Diet (SAD) has them all: high in animal fats including dairy products; high in unhealthy fats (saturated, hydrogenated); low in fiber; high in processed foods; low in complex carbohydrates; and low in fruits, vegetables and other plant-based foods.

The SAD fact is that cultures that eat the reverse of the Standard American Diet - low fat, high in complex carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables and fiber, etc. - have a lower incidence of obesity, cancer and coronary artery disease. What's even more SAD is that countries whose populations can afford to eat the healthiest disease-preventing foods don't. America spends more money on weight loss than any country in the world, yet the American diet contributes to the very conditions we spend so much money to prevent.

The Science of Weight Gain

hamburger meal - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Research conducted at the University of San Francisco Department of Medicine by Drs. Lynda Frassetto and Anthony Sebastian, and subsequently published in the prestigious Journal of Gerontology, clearly demonstrates that as we get older our bodies accumulate acid wastes. The scientists reported they found a significant increase in blood acidity and a correspondingly significant loss of alkaline reserves (which help balance out the acid in our body) with increasing age from 20 to 90 years, indicative of a progressively worsening low-level metabolic acidosis. In looking at the research, one can clearly see that the alkaline reserves of humans remain fairly constant until the age of 40, at which time they abruptly begin a linear downward spiral.

The researchers also noted that, not so coincidentally, adult degenerative diseases such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and others start to appear at the age of 40 and gradually worsen as we get older. They attribute the accumulation of acid and the reduction of the alkaline state as we age to eating the Standard American Diet (SAD), and conclude that the role of age-related metabolic acidosis in the cause of adult degenerative disease warrants consideration.

An Easy Way to Lose Weight

The basic premise regarding the overproduction of acids in the body is that as countries become more "advanced and automated," eating fast foods and saturated fatty meat and dairy proteins becomes the norm. These foods are converted into strong acids that must be eliminated from the blood and or removed from the body through various organs including the kidneys. Acids tend to accumulate in the body's weakest and most devitalized joints and organs because the blood supply to these areas is usually compromised and the immune cells typically incapacitated.

Every acid molecule that passes out of the body via the kidneys must take an important "alkaline" mineral with it, which contributes to the loss of the body's alkaline reserve. So, no matter what health challenge we suffer from, or if we simply simple desire to lose weight or maximize our wellness potential, it all begins with re-establishing the body's depleted "alkaline reserve." The only way we can replace these vital alkalizing nutrients is by consuming a sizable portion of our daily diet in alkalizing fruits, vegetables and other plant foods.