Apple Cider Vinegar and Baking Soda Tonic Health Benefits - Ted's Q&A

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Email Exchange: Ted and Methuselah

Posted by Meth (Los Angeles, California) on 07/16/2006

Greetings: I am writing to you to share some information about two of your popular topics: Sodium bicarbonate as an alkalizing agent, and the apple cider vinegar.

First, the baking soda. Ted, your contributor from Bangkok, has provided extensive input on the subject of internal usage of baking soda as a way of alkalizing via rebuilding body's bicarbonate reserves, and I would like to share with you some information I found in a wonderful book that I recommend to everyone by Paul Pitchford titled "Healing with Whole Foods," revised ed., 1993, published by North Atlantic Books. On pages 166 and 167, he states;

"...Health stores carry baking powder without aluminum. Even so, baking powder and baking soda both are chemicals which deplete baked goods of the B vitamins thiamine and folic acid. These compounds also create a type of alkalinity in the body that eradicates vitamin C [ref. Kirschmann, J.D. Nutrition Almanac. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1984, p 44] ... An excellent use of baking soda is as a dentifrice. Its highly alkaline properties neutralize plague acids and eliminate the bacteria that cause tooth decay. Even more important, baking soda helps stop the major cause of tooth loss--gum infection and inflammation such as gingivitis and pyorrhea--better than most commercial toothpastes. These traits and its non-abrasive quality make it a safe and effective toothpowder for regular use ... Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) injected in the bloodstream has been a standard treatment since the 1920s to reduce lactic acid in the blood of heart attack patients. However, the July 1989 issue of the American Journal of Medicine reported human experiments that confirmed earlier animal trials involving sodium bicarbonate in the blood: blood flow decreased, the body's oxygen use fell 25%, and lactic acid levels in the blood actually rose. These negative effects also occur to some extent when food which contains baking soda is absorbed into the blood."

Given such negative assertions about the internal use of baking soda, I wonder what Ted's thoughts would be on these matters. I am sure that he, as a biochemist, has seen such negative assertions and it would be nice to share with us his thoughts. Moreover, I wonder what he would think of using Cream of Tartar (potassium bitartrate) instead of baking soda as an internal alkalinizing agent as some health practitioners believe it is an excellent alkalinizer (e.g., see Dr. William Wong's article at www.totalityofbeing.com/ArchivedYeastInfections.html). One obvious benefit of such a switch is that you get more potassium, in which many are deficient, and less sodium which most people already have too much of.

Second, the ACV. My purpose in sharing this information is to highlight the possible downside of over-dependence on ACV. Given the overwhelming positive response about ACV remedies, one may get the false impression that the proper or preferred course of action in addressing many of these problems and disorders is to just load up on ACV and all will be well again. For instance, many of the addressed problems for which ACV is offered as a viable remedy seem to be related to a debilitated liver condition, which is a result of bad diet, wrong food choices, stress, unhealthy life styles, and so forth. I hope that the information I share here would serve as a cautionary note to raise the awareness that ACV may be a viable and effective solution only in the short term for a condition which may need more attention and care than just adding ACV to one's daily diet.

On page 165 of the Paul Pitchford's book, he comments on some of the properties and uses of vinegars:

"Vinegar is warming. It creates a temporary warming circulation of energy (qi) in the body and removes stagnant blood. It can quickly alter emotional stagnation as well, particularly in children -- bad moods will usually disappear a few moments after taking vinegar .. The sour and bitter flavors of vinegar reduce accumulations in the liver and abdomen resulting from rich diet. Lemon juice helps in this manner to some extent but is a cooling and more moderate remedy. People who feel toxic and sluggish during a transition from a refined-food and meat-centered diet to one of whole vegetal foods can profit from a little vinegar or lemon. For this purpose, use 1 teaspoon vinegar or a quarter lemon squeezed in water. This remedy can provide relief while toxins are being released ... Vinegar neutralizes poisons in the body and is good for food poisoning. Take 1/4 teaspoonful every fifteen minutes until relieved. One of the best applications for vinegar is in cases of nausea from eating old foods, overly fermented foods, or too many combinations .. Vinegar relieves damp conditions such as edema, overweight, excess mucus, and athlete's foot ...

But on the same page, he offers the following cautionary comments about vinegar in general:

"Distilled vinegar should not be used internally since it is highly deminerilizing. Quality vinegars for internal use contain more of their own minerals; even so, these are potent and should be used sparingly. The best types of vinegars are organic, naturally brewed, unfiltered and unpasteurized versions of apple cider, (brown) rice wine, white wine, and umeboshi. As a folk remedy in America, apple cider vinegar has been used for many types of disorders [ref. Jarvis D.C. Folk Medicine. Greenwich, CT; Fawcett Crest, 1956 ]. However, when chronic conditions are benefited by vinegar as the sole remedy, one must usually continue to use vinegar, or the condition returns. This leads to a kind of vinegar dependency, which can be overcome if the diet and other pertinent factors in the lifestyle are improved ... Contraindications[emphasis is mine]:weak digestion marked by loose, watery stools; general deficiency (frailty); muscular injury or weakness, including rheumatism."

On page 287, he offers more cautionary notes:

"... Perhaps the most powerful common remedy for quickly removing liver stagnation and the accompanying depression and indigestion is vinegar .. Vinegar should not be relied on indefinitely; the basic diet must be improved instead. Since vinegar is warming, it can worsen the condition of those with heat signs; instead, substitute lemon, lime, or grapefruit, which are also bitter/sour but cooling and more gradually acting."

I hope that these pieces of information would help.

Thanks for upkeeping such a great website, and good luck to you. Regards, Meth

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
07/16/2006
383 posts

Dear Methuselah: Want to correct some misinformation as follows:

"...Health stores carry baking powder without aluminum.

Many supermarkets and health stores can have both with aluminum and without aluminum. It is best to check directly with manufacturers and their product specifications sheets and can be found available on the internet. However the level they use generally are much lower than the processed foods we eat, especially baked goods which are baked in aluminum containers and other aluminum fillers, aluminum additives (found in non-dairy creamer) and packaging.

So I would be more cautious about "packaged products", non-dairly cremer, fast foods, and prepared cafeteria food of which they are on average much higher than the raw materials which we obtain. The issue is not raw material it is those pots, and pans and other cooking ware and aluminum which are added along the way. You will be surprised to know that anti-perspirants and vaccination are actually the main source of aluminum toxicity in our blood. In certain countries, it is those old aluminum toothpastes with fluorides which adds aluminum to our brains by many factors. Apparently the fluoridated water we often drinks increases the ability for your brain to absorb aluminum and stay their, which is actually the true leading cause of alzheimer.

baking soda both are chemicals which deplete baked goods of the B vitamins thiamine and folic acid.

Baked goods is not recommended as a regular diet at all. They are high on glycemic index and cause diabetes and excess weight gain. That as well as the issue of glycation in foods along with high carbohydrate foods are not recommended for consumption as it leads to acid pH.

The full name is actually thiamine hydrochloride and vitamin C ascorbic acid. Whether with bicarbonate or without the vitamin levels stays the same, but their chemical names get changed. For example, ascorbic vitamin C in presence of bicarbonate becomes sodium ascorbate. It is still vitamin C, but no longer ascorbic acid. We can say that there are no longer ascorbic acid vitamin C in this form, but a vitamin C of an alkaline form. Researchers commonly make this sleight of hand but most biochemist know better. The active form of most vitamins is actually in their pH nearest to the blood. As such ascorbic and thiamine hydrochoride is still there, but they are in another more alkaline form closer to the blood making it more beneficial biochemically speaking.

Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) injected in the bloodstream has been a standard treatment since the 1920s to reduce lactic acid in the blood of heart attack patients. However, the July 1989 issue of the American Journal of Medicine reported human experiments that confirmed earlier animal trials involving sodium bicarbonate in the blood: blood flow decreased, the body's oxygen use fell 25%, and lactic acid levels in the blood actually rose.

This is a researcher's sleight of hand trick, I often use this data to fool students. In presence of lactic acids gets unbound from muscles and get into blood more, releasing the lactic acid from the cells and into the blood serum. As a result, lactic acid in blood serum increase, while the uptake of bicarbonate by the cells increased dramatically, causing cellular recovery much quicker from lactate poisoning by the cells. Lactates and lactic acid bound to cells are quite toxic. Tissue cultures cannot survive in presence of lactic acid if it is bound to cells. Ringer's solution do not use lactic acid as a pH buffer. They are toxic. Administration of insufficient bicarbonates will be exactly what the researchers found, but if given sufficient bicarbonates, the original 1920s study stand. I often fool students this way, but the sleight of hand trick we researchers do is the dosage level, and whether they are cellular bound or serum bound.

Moreover, I wonder what he would think of using Cream of Tartar (potassium bitartrate) instead of baking soda as an internal alkalinizing agent as some health practitioners believe it is an excellent alkalinizer.

It would be of terrible mistakes to use potassium bitartrate are actually higher with people who are generally sick. It has everything to do with a defective Kreb's cycle. Autistics and people with CFS would get much sicker taking potassium bitartrate when compared to the baking soda. In fact livestock farmers know as a fact that sodium form is a lot less toxic then their potassium counterpart. Part of the reason why ACV is so popular is its ability to reduce the high bitartrate levels in sick people.

For instance, many of the addressed problems for which ACV is offered as a viable remedy seem to be related to a debilitated liver condition, which is a result of bad diet, wrong food choices, stress, unhealthy life styles, and so forth.

Of course, the causes are many, but the malic acid of the ACV is what detoxifies your liver form all those bad choices you make. Sometimes the bad choices are quite unintentional, so you still need ACV anyway, but they are still no substitute for bad choices.

This remedy can provide relief while toxins are being released ... Vinegar neutralizes poisons in the body and is good for food poisoning. Take 1/4 teaspoonful every fifteen minutes until relieved.

No. Vinegar will neutralize some poison. ACV will neutralize another type of poison and water with a couple of drops of hydrogen peroxide will reduce another kind of poison. Lemon has citric acid which will reduce another kind of poison altogether. They don't eliminate every toxins, which is why ACV/vinegar/bicarbonates/ peroxide/citric acid is the preferred longer term solution. And believe it or not you can add them into a single mixture and take that. However, a simplest way not to confuse most novices is to just add ACV bicarbonate. If you want to get really academic with me, add them all up, PLUS the Mammalian Ringer solution also, and with fulvates! When a poisonous snake bit you there is no such thing as a universal antidote for snake venom, of course I would like to see that, but in reality you always need a specific snake serum to neutralized a known snake poison. So if you don't know which snake bit you, you are in trouble.

Contraindications[emphasis is mine]:weak digestion marked by loose, watery stools; general deficiency (frailty); muscular injury or weakness, including rheumatism."

Moderation is everything and there is contraindications for everything regardless of the remedy. Last week a student in college died from drinking too much water. Yes there is also a toxic level for drinking water. The toxic level for salt is about 3,000 gram/kg. in case you want a 50/50 chance of dying from salt.

Summary, some writers of the books on health may have no experience. Nothing works better than a practical hands on experience. So I would give a grain of salt to many comments by the so called health writers. Some who write popular books on health have actually never read a book on health until the publishers gave him a writing contract. The reason why is simple: these popular writers were also popular personalities in entertainment field for example, and getting major sale on such book is easy to understand why the book publishers gave them a major book contract in the first place. Just an example based on my own experience of course.

Replied by Methuselah
07/17/2006

Greetings Ted: Thank you so much for kindly taking the time to provide such a detailed and enlightening response to my email to Earth Clinic. It is quite rewarding and refreshing to come across experienced researchers who are able to dissect and analyze complex topics with clarity and competence and share them with others. As you pointed out, there are plenty of "research" results, advice and experts on all sides of a subject as simple and mundane as the human diet--several thousand years of human experience and observation, but no clear consensus on many of its topics!

It is abundantly clear that you have been grappling with such issues for quite some time, and I am grateful that you have chosen to share your thoughts and experience with the wider public who badly needs and can use any help they can get. The public here in the U.S. is simply shepherded around like a herd by big commercial interests which are more interested in disinformation and even outright deceit all in the name of "superior" and "scientific" drugs, diets, or food products just to make more profit. I am not optimistic that this situation would change for the better anytime soon, but public forums such as Earth Clinic surely may make a growing dent.

To wrap up my email, I surely like your idea of mixing ACV with baking soda for it seems to eliminate the problem of too much acidity in the stomach and the subsequent constipation, but what would be the price to pay for this gain--i.e., wouldn't that make ACV ineffective for problems such as indigestion or acid reflux because my understanding has been that it is the acidity of ACV which is a main factor in rectifying these problems by stimulating the liver to release more bile to neutralize this acidity, thus helping fat digestion and elimination of more toxins with the bile from the liver? Is mixing of ACV and baking soda only a gain without any loss of benefits?

Thanks again for your insightful thoughts and ideas, and I wish you continued success.

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
383 posts

Dear Meth: In response to your email, you obviously found out that I have been grappling with these issues for some time. Your one single long questions I have to breakdown into three sections, to correct some misunderstandings.

Again most of this information you might find them in your college level Anatomy and Physiology books on digestion and digestive processes. It was a valuable course for me while I was in U.S. while I took this summer school as an elective course. That course was to convinced me that baking soda is not something we should ignore and plays a very important role in our body's biochemical processes. Of course all my other classmates remained unenlightened as they were concerned more about getting A's and B's.

Wouldn't that make ACV ineffective for problems such as indigestion or acid reflux ...?

No, in fact apple cider vinegar with baking soda will often work better in the acid reflux as baking soda is an important component which provides the buffering against excess acid. Apple cider vinegar in itself does help acid reflux by reacting with the body's own reserves of bicarbonate stores to form acetates. It is the acetates from the apple cider vinegar which acts as buffers to protect the acid reflux. However, apple cider vinegar is unlikely to work if the body itself has insufficient bicarbonate stores. As a result, there is no acetates and therefore no buffering, which results in continued acid reflux.

The issue of acid reflux may in fact go deeper than this. Recently a friend of mind had an acid reflux, but I suspect it was the famous bacteria, heliobacter pylori is causing the problem. The reason is simple, in this instance she reported stomach pains in stomach. In this case it was not the issue of acid buffering. The issue was that heliobacter pylori is causing damages in the stomach lining and it is digesting itself causing the acid reflux. As a result, I thought fulvic acid, sodium thiosulfate and clove oil would be useful. As commercialism in U.S. would have it, none can be easily purchased, but the major component that cured my friend was the sodium thiosulfate solution, which apparently kills off the bacteria. As to the reason a simple dechlorinator can kill it, I can't tell you why, just that we just know they die off in its presence. The dechlorinator is found in pet shops for fish aquarium. So get the ones with a sulfur smell and has no coloring, and clearly labels it "sodium thiosulfate". These you can use instead. About 10 drops should reduce the acid reflux due to heliobacter pylori.

On the other hand, I had another acid reflux from a body builder here in Bangkok. After taking apple cider vinegar, there was a huge acid reflux as a result of it. I thought this was serious, as you always know, body builders take an awful lot of protein to build muscles and I checked his urine, which was obviously quite acid and was nearing something like pH of 5.1. Under extreme acidity of urinary pH below 5.5, bicarbonate buffer stores are lacking as most of the protein simply neutralized it. So what I requested was for him to stop for 3 weeks taking of apple cider vinegar and start taking three times a day 1 teaspoon of baking soda (aluminum free of course). In Thailand we have a special aluminum free baking soda in tablet form also which we call them "sodamint" available in most drugstore here in Thailand. Well anyway, he took 1 teaspoon three times per day, mixed in 1/2 glass of water. On the second week his acid reflux is gone. On the third week his health and sickness went away. On the fourth week, he started taking apple cider vinegar in pure form. Then after a week, he complained. I said did you add the baking soda? He said no, which is why his acid reflux came back. So I told him his body has problems with bicarbonate stores and it is BEST that he add them to his ACV. However being a purist as he is, he took it on alternate days. And of course his health went up and down in line where his bad days coincide with the ACV. I am not against the ACV, it is that his body already had insufficient bicarbonate already that was causing the problems. So in the end after a long war, he decided to mix with ACV baking soda. From that time till today, he never complained at all and told me that his health is just perfect, much better than before he had seen me. So the story of this reflux issue is simple: mix your ACV and baking soda. It helps.

it is the acidity of ACV which is a main factor in rectifying these problems by stimulating the liver to release more bile to neutralize this acidity?

It is actually the bicarbonates found in the bile which increases bile secretion. In fact it is the bicarbonates which neutralizes the acidity, not the apple cider vinegar alone. This is why baking soda is so important.

The apple cider provides another kind of buffer which I usually refer to them as acetates - a reaction between acetic acid plus baking soda results in sodium acetate. Sodium acetate is well known in chemistry for use as another kind of pH buffers. Acetates are useful in detoxifying and reducing inflammation.

Another component of the apple cider vinegar is the malic acid and citric acid reacted with sodium bicarbonate will also release another kind of pH buffers such as malates and sodium citrate which are quite helpful in reducing inflammation and chelation (removal from the body) of certain heavy metals, such as free radical metals of aluminum and iron.

This is why the more different kinds of pH buffers your body has, the better it is for you. The issue is that it works best if you add ACV with the sodium bicarbonate. How much sodium bicarbonate you need very much depends on everyone's individual differences. But to be safe, just keep adding the sodium bicarbonate until you reach near the pH of 7.3 which near the pH of your own blood. You don't have to be precise, I just leave it at 7.0 and or I just keep a good range between 6.5 - 7.5 is good enough. Not everyone will have a pH meter and most I expect will just have those pH litmus paper. Therefore these range should be sufficient.

thus helping fat digestion and elimination of more toxins with the bile from the liver?

Fat digestion is actually controlled by acetates (reaction of vinegar plus bicarbonates) and especially lecithin which is found in liquid egg yolk (partially cooked eggs where yolk is still liquid) or lecithin in powdered form. MSM should also help with some fat digestion by causing them to be soluble. The more expensive CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) will also help solubilized the fat by helping out the bile.

However, the main component of the bile is actually the sodium, chloride, water, and bicarbonate and this should go a long way toward improving your bile secretions. Since most of our diets already has plenty of sodium, chloride and water anyway, we should actually be concentrating on the bicarbonates. The simplest form of bicarbonates I can think of that you can easily get in supermarket is of course sodium bicarbonate. Drug stores might have "sodamint" but it must be remembered that certain drug makers have a tendency to add other dangerous chemical to this such as aspartame, and other fillers. Therefore, read the labels carefully. Hopefully this will answer some small part of the question you have in mind.

Replied by Meth
07/19/2006

Dear Ted: I do not know how to thank you for so generously taking the time to provide such a detailed and concise response to my question despite your busy and demanding schedule. I hope that I would be able to return the favor in some way. It certainly clarified many issues and corrected some of my misunderstandings. Probably I have other misunderstandings which I hope your future postings on Earth Clinic forum would correct over time.

I also hope that you would decide to compile and present your research and experience into a book on the biochemistry of body pH as it seems to be one of the most important factors, if not the most important factor, in health and disease prevention. The only popular book that I came across on this topic a few years ago was Your Health Your Choice by Ted Morter, Jr. It was an informative book but not as detailed or recipe oriented. That was where I began to appreciate the role of gall bladder in recycling alkaline material in the body although I had already lost my gall bladder. Had I known that years earlier, I would not have listened to my doctor who just wanted to do the surgery and charge my insurance company over $10,000 even though my symptoms were rather mild and just starting. My doctor insisted that gall bladder is just for bile storage and nothing more, and losing it was no big deal. Such is the nature of medical practice here in U.S. Again, I am sincerely grateful for your help, and wish you continued success and progress. Have a great week. Best Regards

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
07/18/2006
383 posts

Dear Meth: 60% of all surgeries in U.S. are actually unnecessary. (See http://www.newstarget.com/012291.html) Even if the cutting off the legs are justified due to diabetic conditions (bacteria is spreading with excess sugar from the leg as food source) can very easily be cured by drinking 3 times the normal amount of water (with appropriate amounts of sea salt as the antibiotic) and the sugar will be reduced by 1/3 allowing the body to heal itself.

There is little money to be made with salt and water, but much more money can be made by rendering us handicapped for the rest of our life. The idea of free enterprise is one thing many Eastern countries really don't share especially when it comes to human health.

When faced with the choice of surgeries, I have a rule of thumb to get a second opinion from a competitor who is in alternative medicine and if he say yes, then I go to a third opinion who was someone who cured of the problem without surgeries. If not successful I will get fourth opinion who was treated another way or perhaps I have a revelation of my own that I might try out myself until I find that no surgery is needed. And if it gets better, then fine, if not, then surgery maybe the last choice on the list. People do not necessarily make the best opinion, but their opinion will often reflect the best interest of themself, which does not necessarily include you into the equation.

The structure of free enterprise is built on the fact that if you can get (force, coerced, lie, cheat and steal) to pay for it, the more the money. There exists another structure where the government health care (latin america) where profit is built on productivity and longevity and cost is built on maiming people where the government take responsibility bu footing the bill of its people. The present design of our social structure of the day to make us humans disposable and useless like a disposable like baby diapers.

Sorry about the social commentary!


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