4

votes

Lets hack latent acidosis

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 01, 2012 at 6:46 PM

So I was discussing latent acidosis with a friend last night and decided to do some research today. It easy to find people implicating chronic latent acidosis in all sorts of chronic disease but they often seem to have something to sell (red flag). So I switch over to Google scholar and find a number of articles on the relationship between latent acidosis and osteoporosis/depletion of bone minerals.

In light of this I'm ready to give the latent acidosis theorists the benefit of the doubt for now because I can follow their logic: Metabolic production of strong acids requires the acids to be escorted out of the body by minerals resulting in mineral depletion over a long period of time which causes a host of health problems (having recently read a bit about magnesium deficiency recently I can understand the breadth of the suggested problems even though there isn't really a lot of evidence for anything other than osteoporosis).

To me there are two main ways to fight this:

1- Reducing food that produces acids when metabolised.

2- Compensate for the depletion but increasing intake of bio-available minerals.

The proposed culprits under #1 are grains (or even starch in general), sugar and protein. I think there are a lot of other factors that need to be considered when addressing these macronutrients so this might not be the best solution.

That leaves #2 and brings me to my question: What do you think is the best way to fight mineral depletion?(or if you have evidence that latent acidosis isn't really a problem I'd like to hear that too)

I've already given some consideration to possible answers:

1- Eat more fruits and vegetables (modern farming may have depleted our soils to the point of this no longer being a effective solution by itself)

2- daily multivitamin/multimineral (I'm skeptical of this because because so many studies show no benefit to all cause mortality)

3- Supplementing specific minerals (I've recently started taking magnesium and found it's effects quite positive so far, but it would be difficult to get all the needed trace minerals this way)

4- Drink harder water (there are some interesting studies on hard water and heart disease)

5- Use sea salt

6- Bone broth (use the minerals directly from the animals we're getting the protein from to counteract the acid affects of the protein)

Regards,

Jordan

Edit: here is the review article that got me thinking this might be more than just pseudo-science http://www.protina.de/literaturservice/media/cms_48921ca478e63.pdf

Edit 2: I've read the full article more thoroughly and found it very interesting. There is even a nod to paleo in there. My interpretation of their results would point to recommendations to eat more fruits and vegetables, reduce grain/sugar and/or protein intake and increase intake of alkaline minerals.

I'm inclined to think that reducing grains and sugar in favour of higher fat intake (the only macro nutrient not implicated in acid production) combined with fruits and vegetables and other sources of alkaline minerals would be the appropriate approach (which brings us back to my initial question of what the best source of alkaline minerals)

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 01:18 PM

I didn't get the same impression of a failure to define it though they could have been clearer about it. Also to me they didn't seem to have vegetarian bias, they were limited to reviewing existing papers and many of those probably did have a veg bias, but were trying to be objective about it. Considering other research I would think the paleo solution to latent acidosis would be better than the vegetarian one.

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 01:09 PM

I agree completely on the proteins and grains I've already seen some indication from studies that when there are enough minerals protein has a positive effect, and the calcium absorption point is also a good one. Grains appear to be the real culprit. I'll have to look into the salt thing because my understanding was that sodium might be a little helpful however not as important as potassium and magnesium. The balance of the minerals might be important (which is anther dimension of the mineral intake question)

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on April 02, 2012
at 03:49 AM

Also, my suggestions concerning vitamin supplementation and exercise were not meant to be exclusive, but were in addition to the list of answers you started "to fight mineral depletion."

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on April 02, 2012
at 03:39 AM

Jordan, in reading your link above, I note that (1) the authors don't specifically define "latent acidosis," but (2) claim that the condition is widespread, a claim that can't be examined because they haven't precisely defined the term. (3) The authors seem to have a vegetarian bias, blaming acidosis on the consumption of animal protein, yet later in the article they shift the blame to neolithic grain consumption, noting that (4) stone age humans ate a diet high in animal protein but had normal acid/base balance.

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:58 AM

I found the full text. link above

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:38 AM

Furthermore reading the blog post that you linked didn't really prove anything beyond the fact that the body's pH doesn't really change, which, as far as I can tell isn't really what they are saying. It seems to have more to do with what the body has to do to maintain said pH. I'm totally willing to accept the argument that the burden of proof still lies with the people who are proponents of the theory, but the fact that some conventional studies have linked acidity to osteoporosis makes one think. (I couldn't read the full text of these studies because I'm between degrees)

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:27 AM

My point wasn't that acidic metabolism products are the only/primary cause of osteoporosis, nor was it that exercise and vitamins aren't important for bone health. It was more about whether acidic metabolism products could contribute to mineral deficiencies and if so what the best way to counteract it.

96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on April 01, 2012
at 07:05 PM

I'm an avid proponent of bone broths, but I think they're a better source of gelatin/connective tissue than bone minerals.

  • B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

    asked by

    (120)
  • Views
    3.7K
  • Last Activity
    1280D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

2 Answers

1
A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on April 02, 2012
at 04:50 AM

Protein: This paper published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition discusses the importance of protein on bone health. Here are two quotes from the paper:

"Experimentally selective deficiency in dietary proteins causes marked deterioration in bone mass, micro-architecture and strength, the hallmark of the osteoporosis disease"

"Clinically large prospective epidemiologic studies indicate that relatively high protein intake is associated with increased bone mineral mass and reduced incidence of osteoporotic fracture"

I think the evidence shows that protein may be acidifying and may increase renal excretion of calcium, but it also balances this out by increasing calcium absorption from food (perhaps via increasing IGF-1, which might come with its own problems, but that's a topic for another discussion). Furthermore, low protein diets are often associated with poor bone health. I would suggest that getting adequate protein is more important for bone health than avoiding "excessive" protein.

Grains: The calculated potential renal acid load of grains is fairly positive, meaning they're metabolized to acids. I think that might suggest grains aren't great for bone health, given that they also lack a lot of the protein and other nutrients that might improve calcium metabolism. Studies like this one frequently demonstrate that cereal grains have negative effects on indicators of bone health compared to fruits and vegetables. I don't think grains are doing anyone favors when it comes to bone health.

Two researchers from the University of California, San Francisco have published numerous papers on the acid-base balance topic. Their names are Anthony Sebastian and Lynda Frassetto. Their studies are interesting and worth reading if you're interested in this topic. Frassetto co-authored this review article called "Diet-induced acidosis: is it real and clinically relevant". I think it gives a good scientific overview of the acid-base theory as it relates to diet and none of the jibber jabber from unscrupulous book pushers and "Alkaline Diet" advocates.

Sebastian and Frassetto also believe excess salt is a contributing factor in the pathogenesis of bone loss via acidosis. I've looked into this myself and don't really agree with them.

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 01:09 PM

I agree completely on the proteins and grains I've already seen some indication from studies that when there are enough minerals protein has a positive effect, and the calcium absorption point is also a good one. Grains appear to be the real culprit. I'll have to look into the salt thing because my understanding was that sodium might be a little helpful however not as important as potassium and magnesium. The balance of the minerals might be important (which is anther dimension of the mineral intake question)

1
6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on April 01, 2012
at 08:09 PM

"The last temptation is the greatest treason
To do the right deed for the wrong reason."
--Thomas Beckett character in T.S. Eliot's "Murder in the Cathedral"

Jordan,

I agree with all of your answers, but I don't buy the premise of your question, that mineral depletion and osteoporosis are problems primarily of acid/base balance. Here's an interesting review debunking the concept of acid/alkaline producing foods. The acid/base balance issue has also been discussed several times on PaleoHacks (see here, here and here).

To your ideas for fighting osteoporosis and mineral depletion, I would add supplementation with vitamins D3 and K2, as well as exercise (weight-bearing and resistance).

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:38 AM

Furthermore reading the blog post that you linked didn't really prove anything beyond the fact that the body's pH doesn't really change, which, as far as I can tell isn't really what they are saying. It seems to have more to do with what the body has to do to maintain said pH. I'm totally willing to accept the argument that the burden of proof still lies with the people who are proponents of the theory, but the fact that some conventional studies have linked acidity to osteoporosis makes one think. (I couldn't read the full text of these studies because I'm between degrees)

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:58 AM

I found the full text. link above

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on April 02, 2012
at 03:49 AM

Also, my suggestions concerning vitamin supplementation and exercise were not meant to be exclusive, but were in addition to the list of answers you started "to fight mineral depletion."

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 12:27 AM

My point wasn't that acidic metabolism products are the only/primary cause of osteoporosis, nor was it that exercise and vitamins aren't important for bone health. It was more about whether acidic metabolism products could contribute to mineral deficiencies and if so what the best way to counteract it.

B4661e44912c6f7c5eb26f36d15dd604

(120)

on April 02, 2012
at 01:18 PM

I didn't get the same impression of a failure to define it though they could have been clearer about it. Also to me they didn't seem to have vegetarian bias, they were limited to reviewing existing papers and many of those probably did have a veg bias, but were trying to be objective about it. Considering other research I would think the paleo solution to latent acidosis would be better than the vegetarian one.

6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on April 02, 2012
at 03:39 AM

Jordan, in reading your link above, I note that (1) the authors don't specifically define "latent acidosis," but (2) claim that the condition is widespread, a claim that can't be examined because they haven't precisely defined the term. (3) The authors seem to have a vegetarian bias, blaming acidosis on the consumption of animal protein, yet later in the article they shift the blame to neolithic grain consumption, noting that (4) stone age humans ate a diet high in animal protein but had normal acid/base balance.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!