A body is naturally at a pH of approximately 7.35, which is slightly alkaline, and a diet high in alkaline-forming foods helps maintain this healthy pH level in the body, states U.S. News & World Report. If an individual consumes acid-forming foods, the body compensates by leaching calcium from the bones to remain at a pH of 7.35, which could cause long-term damage to the body, such as osteoporosis. An alkaline diet prevents this.
An alkaline diet is also generally healthier because it limits the consumption of meat, dairy, alcohol, caffeine and processed food, such as canned goods and fast foods, and encourages the consumption of fruits and vegetables, WebMD reports. This may result in weight loss in certain individuals. Some evidence exists suggesting a high alkaline diet may prevent kidney stones, improve heart and brain function, reduce pain in the lower back, and decrease the risk of colon cancer and type 2 diabetes.
Alkaline-forming foods tend to be highly nutritious and contain antioxidants, which help fight damage from free radicals, explains U.S. News & World Report. An alkaline diet may decrease cortisol levels and assist in cellular regeneration, and it benefits athletes by reducing inflammation in the muscles and improving efficiency of the body's muscles, increasing an athlete's endurance and decreasing recovery time.