Acidosis is a condition in which the acidity of body fluid is abnormally high. The normal body chemistry is approximately 20 per cent acid and 80 per cent alkaline. In normal health, the reaction of the blood is alkaline and that is essential for our physical and mental well-being.
The preponderance of alkalis in the blood is due to the fact that the products of the vital combustions taking place in the body are mostly acid in character. Carbohydrates and fats form about nine-tenths of the normal fuel of the body.
In normal health, this great mass of material is converted into carbon dioxide gas and water. This huge amount of acid is transported by the blood to the various points of discharge, mainly lungs. By virtue of its alkalinity, the blood is able to transport the acid from the tissues to the discharge points.
Whenever the alkalinity of the blood is reduced, even slightly, its ability to transport the carbon dioxide gets reduced. This results in the accumulation of acid in the tissues.
The symptoms of acidosis are hunger, indigestion, burning sensation and pain in the pharynx, nausea, vomiting, headache, various nervous disorders and drowsiness. It is the breeding ground for most diseases.
Nephritis or Bright’s disease, rheumatism, premature old age, arteriosclerosis, high blood pressure, skin disorders and various degenerative diseases are traceable to this condition. It lowers the vitality of the system, thereby increasing the danger of infectious diseases.
The main cause of acidosis or hypo-alkalinity of the blood is faulty diet, in which too many acid-forming foods have been consumed. In the normal process of metabolism, various acids are formed in the system and in addition, other acids are introduced in food.
Whenever there is substantial increase in the formation of acids in the system and these acids are not properly eliminated through the lungs, the kidneys, and the bowels, the alkalinity of the blood is reduced, resulting in acidosis.
Other causes of acidosis are depletion of alkali reserve due to diarrhoea, dysentery and cholera, accumulation of carbon dioxide in asphyxia as in circulatory and pulmonary diseases and accumulation of acetone bodies resulting from starvation, vomiting and diabetes mellitus.