You’ve likely heard of pH at some point in your life, whether that be when checking pool chemicals, in science class, or, in regards to this post, in medical scenarios having to do with urine. pH is the measure of how acidic or basic something is. The range goes from 0-14, with 7 being neutral. If something’s pH is less than 7, that means it’s acidic. Likewise, if something’s pH is above 7, that means it is a base. It’s essential to know the basics of pH as it plays a vital role in all of our lives every day.
This post will be exploring the basics of urine pH. Your urine’s pH must be on point, as if it is too high or too low, you can be at risk of various, severe medical conditions. With that being said, you should make it a point to check your urine’s pH often and be proactive, as this will help you to avoid any major issues down the line. Now, with recent medical innovations, you don’t have to go to a doctor or medical center to get your pH checked; you can do it right in the comfort of your own home. If the pH in your urine is off, this could be an indicator that something is wrong. In some cases, whatever is wrong could be major and potentially life-altering; however, the person may not have realized anything was wrong before check his or her pH.
When you know the basics of pH, you will better be able to live an overall healthier life. You will avoid any stressful medical conditions and will be able to rest easy, knowing that you are going above and beyond when it comes to your own health. However, what if you don’t know anything about pH or how to check it? What if you didn’t even know that you could check your urine’s pH? This post will aim to give the average person a better understanding of ph and detail all one needs to know to maintain or achieve a healthy pH.
What is Urine pH?
Urine pH can be a complex thing to understand; however, everyone must have a good understanding of it. Human urine is typically slightly acidic, with a range from 4.5 to 8 and typically around 6-7. Several different things impact your urine’s pH, such as your diet, diseases, and certain medicines. If your urine pH is too high or too low, you could be suffering from a medical condition such as a urinary tract infection, kidney stones, etc. By checking the pH of your urine and finding that it is abnormal, you may discover a health condition, that you need to change your diet, or that you should switch medications.
Related: Vivoo pH Box
Why Should We Test Urine pH?
Your urine pH can indicate many different things and may offer insight into something you wouldn’t have otherwise discovered. When you find out the pH value of your urine, you will be able to make the appropriate lifestyle choices. For example, suppose your urine is significantly alkaline. In that case, your physician may advise you to get off of a certain medication or may prescribe you medication because it’s understood you have a urinary tract infection. With that being said, one of the main factors affecting urine pH is diet. Abnormal results indicate that a change should be made in one’s diet. Checking your urine’s pH will allow you to be proactive and avoid the stress and physical pain of medical issues such as a UTI or kidney stone.
When to test your pH?
There are several times when it is crucial to check your urine’s pH, such as:
- When you start a new medication
- You think you may have a UTI
- You think you may have a kidney stone
- Depending on the way that you eat
- You think you may have a kidney issue
However, it will be in your best interest to check your urine’s pH as regularly as possible, and with Vivoo, this is easy.
To understand what your pH levels are telling you, you need to know the very basics of normal and acidic pH levels. Here are some facts you should know:
Normal urine ph range
A neutral pH is 7.0, and most people’s urine pH level is around 6.0. However, if your urine pH is slightly below or above the optimal range, you shouldn’t be concerned.
Abnormal pH value in urine
An abnormal pH value can provide you with important information about what is happening in your body or how your diet affects your body, in this case, reasons such as dietary habits or the possibility of diseases should be evaluated.
Causes of acid and alkaline urine pH
A high urine pH may be due to:
- Kidneys that do not properly remove acids
- Kidney failure
- Urinary tract infection
- A diet high in vegetables and fruits, low in protein and grains
A low urine pH may be due to:
- Diabetic ketoacidosis
- Excessive alcohol use
- Too much acid in the body fluids (metabolic acidosis)
- High protein diet
- Eating high in processed foods, especially sugar
What is the relationship between urine pH and dietary content?
Your diet can play a significant role in your urine’s pH. For example, if you follow a diet full of fruits, vegetables, legumes, and low in meat, you will likely have a high alkaline level. Or, if you consume mostly meat, your urine’s pH will likely be more acidic.
Diet’s PRAL and Effect on Urine Ph
PRAL stands for “Potential Renal Acid Load,” a measurement of the amount of acid the body produces due to diet. PRAL is measured in 1 milliequivalent acid per day. Positive PRAL values indicate that more acid has been produced from ingested food. Negative PRAL values indicate that base has been produced in the body as a result of digested food. When we mention “base” being produced, we are referring to base-forming solutions- mineral elements that are alkaline or basic in solution. The body’s pH is the amount of acid relative to the amount of base.
PRAL is helpful in estimating the effect of diet on urine acidity. Acid is produced in the body as a result of normal processes such as digestion and metabolism. Some dietary methods cause more acid buildup in the body than others. The lungs and kidneys tightly regulate whole-body pH to maintain a healthy life. Therefore, the body first starts to work the kidneys and get help from the lungs in order to get rid of the acid buildup through urine.
Low-carbohydrate and high-protein diets increase the acid load and cause changes in the urinary system, but have little effect on the blood and pH levels. Fruits, vegetables, and fruit juices are rich in alkali and have a low acid load and low PRAL score. Cereal products, meat, milk, and fish products are low in alkalinity and have a higher acid load and high PRAL score. Because adequate protein intake is essential in preventing the formation of osteoporosis and sarcopenia, increasing the amount of fruit and vegetable consumption may be more effective than reducing protein intake to achieve a healthy pH level. Unless there is a deficiency of some type of mineral, dietary practices which disrupt the acid and alkaline balance of the body should be avoided because they will increase the risks of disease. If an imbalance results due to excess acid, it may be regulated by making minor changes to diet and lifestyle.
How to higher acidic urine pH
If you are looking for at-home ways to fix the acidity in your urine, try one of these tips:
- Avoid consuming milk and other dairy products,
- Consuming animal protein sources should be reduced,
- Consuming plant-based protein sources like legumes should be increased,
- Vegetable and fruit consumption should be increased.
Alkaline foods include
As stated earlier, alkaline can majorly impact the body’s pH. Foods and their PRAL value that will alkaline in your pH include:
- Watermelon ( -2)
- Jalapenos (-4.3)
- Basil (-10)
- Garlic (-2.6)
- Onion (-4.6)
- Avocado (-8.6)
- Mushrooms (-4.5)
- Ginger (-7.8)
- Soybeans (-5,7)
- Tofu (-12.3)
- Green beans (-3.1)
- Bananas (-6.9)
How to Lower Alkaline Urine pH
If you want to work on lowering your alkaline levels on your own, here are some tips to help you do just that:
- Add grains to your diet
- Add high-protein foods to your diet
Some acidic foods to incorporate into your diet if you have high alkaline levels include
- Red meats, (+12.5)
- Poultry meats, (+7.5)
- Fishes, (+5)
- And other seafood,
- Cheese (+5 <> +20
- Milk (+ 0.2)
- And other dairy products,
- Eggs, (+9.4)
Medical Conditions & Risks
There are all kinds of medical conditions and risks associated with your body’s pH, especially with your urine’s pH. Some medical conditions and risks are more severe than others; however, all should be taken seriously. If you think that you have a medical condition or are at risk of a serious illness correlated to your urine’s pH, seek medical attention right away.
If a person has a high pH level, some of the most common medical conditions that he or she should be concerned about include a UTI, kidney stones, or other related kidney issues. However, a person may have a high urine pH because of prolonged vomiting as this rids the body of stomach acid that helps regulate the body’s overall pH balance.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, when a person has low urine pH, this could be attributed to a specific medication, frequent diarrhea, starvation, or diabetes.
Urine pH role in diseases
Urine pH can indicate many different diseases, such as respiratory disease, diabetes, UTIs, and metabolic disorders. If you check your urine’s pH at home and find that it is consistently too high or too low, you should look into what that could be telling you. Your issue could be minor and easy to fix; however, it could also indicate some sort of disease. You should talk to your doctor about what kind of disease your abnormal pH could be an indication of.
Diseases and issues caused by an acidic pH
In addition to kidney stones, people with an acidic pH may suffer from the following complications if they do not get the appropriate medical attention:
- Kidney disease
- Bone disease
- Delayed growth
How can one prevent such things? Doctors recommend staying hydrated, monitor alcohol consumption, watch blood sugar levels, especially if you have diabetes.
Several different things could be to blame if your urine’s pH is overly acidic, such as:
- A high-protein diet that is also low carb; specifically low in fruit and vegetable carbs
Diseases and issues caused by an alkaline pH
Those with an alkaline pH are at risk of UTIs and kidney stones, however, they are also at risk of other more severe kidney issues. To lower the alkaline in one’s urine, he or she drinks 6-8 8oz glasses of water a day. However, if the alkalinity of one’s urine does not fix itself on its own, one may need to seek medical intervention, as he or she could become subject to:
- Kidney stones
- Frequent and painful UTIs
- Other kidney-related disorders
Some of the main culprits of high alkaline pH in urine include:
- Vomiting; rids the body of stomach acid
- A diet high in vegetables and fruits
- A medical condition
What are Kidney Stones?
Kidney stones are among the most common issues associated with an imbalance in urine pH, but what exactly are kidney stones?
Kidney stones are hard deposits of minerals and acid salts that stick together in the urine. Typically kidney stones do not cause any permanent damage, though they are often extremely painful as they pass through the urinary tract. When a person has a kidney stone, the only way for him or her to get rid of it is to pass it; though in rare cases, when a kidney stone is extremely large, one may have to have a medical procedure performed. If a person has a kidney stone, he or she will likely feel pain in the abdomen and feel nauseous.
To avoid getting kidney stones, one should stay hydrated and ensure that their urine’s pH is always in check.
Related: Vivoo Kidney BOX
UTIs, or urinary tract infections, are another one of the most common medical conditions associated with an abnormal urine pH. A UTI is an infection in any part of the urinary system, including the kidneys, urethra, or bladder. Both men and women can get a UTI; however, they are more common in women. Often, UTIs will occur in the urethra or the bladder, though in more severe cases, they will occur in the kidneys.
UTIs can occur due to several different reasons, such as:
- The shape of one’s urethra; women have shorter urethras, which makes it easier for bacteria to get into their bladders
- Not urinating after sexual intercourse
- Changes in hormones
- Kidney stones
- Multiple sclerosis
- Injury to the spinal cord
When one is experiencing a UTI, he or she will likely suffer from the following side effects:
- Back pain
- Increased urge to urinate
- Blood in the urine
- Pain while urinating
- Pelvic pain
The number one treatment for UTIs is antibiotics and ample amounts of water. Some people are more prone to getting UTIs than others. To prevent UTIs, one should check the pH of their urine regularly and make it a point always to stay hydrated.
The Significance of Urine pH
Overall, staying on top of your urine’s pH is essential to living a healthy life. With the innovations of Vivoo urine strips, people can check their urine’s pH regularly and make the appropriate lifestyle changes if they find that their pH is abnormal.
Checking your pH regularly may save you from suffering painful or inconvenient medical issues, such as a urinary tract infection or a kidney stone. Or, by periodically checking your urine’s pH, you may find a medical problem that you didn’t know you had.
It will be worth your while to invest in Vivoo so that you can stay on top of your urine’s pH. When you pay special attention to maintaining a healthy pH, you will improve your overall quality of life and will potentially save yourself the stress and physical pain down the line.