Posted by Russell on 09/06/2007

I like the lemon / sodium bicarbonate and have been taking it occasionally recently.

I'm in a discussion with someone who argues the lemon and sodium bicarbonate should NOT be mixed. Here is what they say: With the alkalising, you want to make sure it is alkaline, and not cancelling each other out - it would pretty much defeat the purpose, but the solution would be more acidic, and not preferable to drink.

Dr Bunhead (scientist) says this - In this experiment the citric acid and bicarbonate of soda are being destroyed. As they are destroyed carbon dioxide gas is created. You are making something by destroying something else. The carbon dioxide that is made is an acid so it tastes sour on your tongue.

The combination of the two is also used as a powerful cleaner - it destroys anything in its path like limescale and mould, including the small intestines which are not as robust as your chrome. I liken it to the reaction of putting bicarb down the sink and dousing it with vinegar - it is used to unblock drains. How might I respond to this? Many Thanks

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
391 posts

Russell: A reaction of baking soda and citric acid results in a chemical compound called sodium citrate. Sodium citrate, and I studied biochemistry is that the citrates is a buffering solution used intracellularly as a buffer whenever the cells experiences acidosis, and lactic acidosis. Citrate is also used by the Kreb's cycle to help the the cells, such as mitochrondria, which is why a citrate, a malate found in apple cider vinegar is reported to increase energy. The single most serious problem in a cell biochemistry is that it takes appreciable energy away from the cells whenever calcium is in excess and if this happens, and the cell lack energy which so often happens as you get older shows itself as a cyst or in a more serious case, a polycystic kidney disease, which can damage an entire organism. The more common problem I have encountered is that the blood serum is the excess calcium that causes the blood to precipitate or clot causing a heart attack whenever calcium is in excess. Citrate is used in biochemistry as an alkaline buffers and citrate converts back biochemically speaking to a bicarbonate. In fact the most compact form of bicarbonate I have seen to date is the citrate form where a citrate acquires carbon dioxide to form a bicarbonate. The only known buffers have found that can cause the urine pH to a near optimum pH near the blood of 7.35 is the citrate form, while it the baking soda cannot nearly reached that and the best it can do is a 7.0 pH. The optimum urine pH is 7.35, while baking soda is not close, and most people's pH urine is not even near any of these values that usually averages about less than 7 due to dietary preferances for acid forming food which tends to cause the body to digest itself very very slowly like a stomach digesting a food.

I hope some of this logic helps, if not you can email me for more information.