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Fruits and vegetables, good for the bones? —

Fruits and vegetables, good for the bones? —

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By Elena ConisAugust 26, 2009

Don’t think dairy when it comes to building strong bones, say proponents of the low-acid diet. Focus instead on a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, these nutrition scientists say.

The low-acid diet (also called the alkaline acid diet) has been the subject of scientific debate of late, as doctors and researchers question what, precisely, it takes to keep bones strong. The thinking behind the diet goes like this: Blood is slightly alkaline, with a pH just above 7. If the diet is rich in acids, the body tries to restore alkalinity by eliminating minerals, including potassium, magnesium and calcium, which the blood essentially pulls from the bones.

Following a low-acid diet doesn’t mean avoiding vinegar and citrus fruits. On the contrary, it means not overloading on proteins, which are made up of amino acids that, as the name suggests, are acidic in nature. Low-acid diet adherents point out that because humans did not evolve on a diet heavy in meat and dairy, the modern Western diet, which is rich in animal proteins, may be contributing to illness and disease — including osteoporosis.

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