February 13, 2014 @ 4:25 PM

You hear a lot these days about creating a healthy pH balance in the body. But you can go overboard in various directions and get yourself out of balance while trying to get in balance. Essential oils can help, but not the way you may think.

Some companies have built an enormous following by selling products that promise to be alkalizing. They say that cancer and other degenerative diseases cannot thrive in an alkalized body. That scares some people into going overboard on alkalizing.

I have read a lot of literature from these companies, and have come away believing that the best way to achieve a healthy pH balance is mainly through avoiding highly processed foods, especially sugar, and enjoying a whole-food diet. Extreme measure to alkalize are not necessary

I know that if we are now eating the Standard American Diet, then taking ourselves generally in a more alkaline direction can be healthy. Taking a little lemon oil in your drinking water is a good, alkalizing start. But there are also reasons to not go overboard on trying to alkalize, especially for older people, because their production of digestive acid decreases as they age. So we have to be careful recommending a too aggressive alkalizing regimen for them. You don’t want people going overboard with baking soda, Prilosec, or anti-acids.

Using pure lemon juice (I take a half a lemon daily to keep my kidney stones under control), actually creates more alkalinity in the body. I asked my urologist about it, and he said that science supports taking lemon juice for alkalizing the body and at the same time reducing the possibility of kidney stones.

Here are my conclusions regarding pH where essential oils are concerned. Each oil has a specific pH, but you are using so little oil, that its effect in the body isn’t that pronounced where pH is concerned. However, they help in a major way by preserving the healthy microflora (unlike antibiotics). They control the bad bacteria, fungi, and viruses, thus allowing the internal ecosystem (the beneficial microorganisms) to adjust and balance itself in a way that is best for you.

So it’s important to use antimicrobial oils, especially the mild, affordable, and safest ones, is a good idea. This is most important if you’ve noticed a little infection that needs to go away. Just pick the oils that are safe and proven, and use them responsibly through ingestion, topical application, and diffusing according to the safety rules. A body that is too full of latent or chronic infection is a major threat to your long-term health.

Personally I regulate my pH and lower inflammation by (1) taking probiotic foods I ferment myself, (2) regular green smoothies with plenty of healthy greens out of my own garden or some green powders out of season, (3) limiting my use of sugar, meats and processed flour products, (4) regular use of essential oils--never letting infections of any kind get out of hand, and (5) taking the juice of a half a lemon daily in drinking water (and a drop of lemon oil). I wouldn’t go overboard, especially if you’re a little older, in alkalizing your water, taking an excessive amount of green powders, or using drugs or baking soda to overcome GERD or other fire-in-the-belly problems.

I know from working with companies that tout pH balanced skin care, green powder products, and alkalizing water, that pH is a controversial topic with some pseudo science involved and plenty of controversy and contradictions. It's a bit overwhelming for most people to understand or explain. I just feel we shouldn't be going overboard and making everything we consume more alkaline with baking soda, special alkalizing cups or filters for every drop of water we consume, or an excessive amount of expensive green powders. Get to know your body and use moderation and common sense in regulating its delicate balance.