Let's get straight to the point: The alkaline diet is an excellent choice for weight loss. Even so, nutrition is too complicated to be reduced to one rule, such as "Only eat alkalizing foods." There are some acidifying foods that have important health benefits, such as tomatoes, prunes, and zucchini. There are also some alkalizing foods that should be consumed in moderation or not at all because they're high in fat, sugar, and sodium--for example, clarified butter, molasses, and sea salt.
In general, however, when you choose alkalizing foods, you are choosing whole foods that are high in nutrients, but low in calories. Most fresh fruits and vegetables--some of the healthiest foods on the planet--are alkalizing. On the other hand, virtually all junk foods are acidifying, from chocolate bars to pop tarts.
Keep reading for four specific tips that will help to maximize alkaline diet weight loss.
1. Focus on Fresh Produce
Whole fruits and vegetables are not only highly alkalizing, but they are lower in calories than any other type of food. For example, strawberries contain just 9 calories per ounce, and bok choy contains a minuscule 4 calories per ounce. The advantage of these foods is that they fill you up without making you fat. After all, which meal is more likely to to leave you feeling satisfied--a heaping plateful of steamed vegetables with a moderate serving of lean meat on the side, or a thumbnail-sized slice of pepperoni pizza?
2. Be Careful with Dried Fruits, Nuts, and Seeds
Some alkalizing foods are high in calories. For example, dried apple contains 68 calories per ounce, compared with just 15 calories per ounce of fresh apple. Cashews contain a whopping 161 calories per ounce. Nuts, seeds, and dried fruits certainly make a much healthier snack than a soft drink and a candy bar. But if you're watching your weight, you will be much more successful if you consume these high-calorie foods in moderation, or not at all.
3. Limit Your Consumption of Grains and Baked Goods
Alkalizing whole grains are healthy foods, but they are fairly high in calories, with around 100 calories per ounce. This means that all baked goods, even those made with alkalizing whole grains, should be consumed in moderation if weight loss is a goal. Instead of filling up on bread, rice, or pasta, you would be better off making vegetables the centerpiece of your meal and having a small serving of japonica rice or quinoa on the side.
4. Use Your Head
To lose weight and keep it off, it's important to know the essentials of the alkaline diet. But it's even more important to understand something about psychology. Dieters start out with good intentions, but before long they often run out of motivation or run into some obstacle that derails their effort to lose weight. Simple psychological tactics like planning ahead, seeking social support, and giving yourself small rewards can make the difference between success and failure.