The Acid Alkaline Diet & Baking Soda

Article by ross

Can you use baking soda to make your body alkaline?

This question keeps coming up (most recently in our brand new forum / message board) – but also from customer emails and comments on other posts in the blog. People want to know:

Instead of expensive pH drops or alkaline mineral supplements – can I just use normal baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to alkalise my body?

This is a big question, which could have a big impact on people who are trying to alkalise and energise themselves and so I’ve gone to a big man (in stature, not size!) to get the answer. Thankfully I’ve got a good working relationship with Dr. Young now and so I went to him with this very question last week. His response was:

Most all sodium bicarbonates on the market contain anti-caking agents which are toxic – such as aluminium. There are 3 other mineral salts (magnesium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, and calcium bicarbonate) which are important and not in other products but in pHour salts (his alkaline mineral supplement).

Why are these other salts important?

Dr Young goes on to say:

A combination of four powerful bicarbonate mineral salts (sodium bicarbonate, magnesium bicarbonate, potassium bicarbonate, and calcium bicarbonate) are anti-oxidant, anti-aging and maintain the alkaline design of the body from both the inside out and the outside in.

These four antioxidant/anti-aging mineral salts are naturally occurring in all fluids of the body. Specifically, they may aid in the reduction of dietary and metabolic acidity helping to maintain the alkaline design of the human, animal or plant body and slowdown or reverse the aging or decay process.

I believe that each of these four salts are all highly alkalising, but each do have a different role in the body. While it is great to get sodium bicarbonate, the power of having all four salts is far greater than just one in isolation.

So in short:

  1. Supermarket sodium bicarbonate contains toxins such as aluminium
  2. Having a range of salts is far superior to having just one salt

Personally I’m going to continue with the minerals because I’ve had fantastic results so far, including a marked increase in my energy levels, better digestion and clearer skin. I love them!

BUT – it’s always best to get all of your nutrients from real foods where possible, remember – supplements are there to supplement – not replace.

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  1. James Frazer Mann Reply

    At this moment I am going to do my breakfast, once having my breakfast coming over again to read other

  2. Bill Miller Reply

    It is my understanding that Dr. Young’s product no longer contains magnesium bicarbonate, but instead contains magnesium chloride, which has an entirely different chemical effect on the body. Do you know about this?

    • ross Reply

      Hi Bill

      I must admit I’ve been out of the supplement industry a while and haven’t checked this. I’ll take a look.


  3. Beloved Reply

    New question: when Dr. Young recommends that we put pH drops in water to raise the alkalinity does he mean to add them to already pH 9.5-10.5, ionized, micro-clustered water? Or, is he talking about adding it to lower pH waters?

  4. Todd Reply

    Arm and Hammer has NO aluminum … 99 cent store (So Calif.) has a generic brand with NO aluminum. Brush your teeth with a paste of it!

  5. gail Reply

    Why is it that every time you read some health article there is always some products being suggested to purchase. The man who wrote this article probably works for that company that sells the stuff … and makes more money drawing others to these products ! When you have to purchase things ( costly) it is not something many can stick with long term ! I bet the so called salts used in the product cost barely nothing to make and you are paying Lot of money for them ! There are more natural ways to alkaline your body out there without having to buy someones expensive product ! These companies use different tactics to make you believe that you really need their products…which you do not ! Save your money and look for more natural ways that are easy to maintain and do not empty your wallet !
    This product might very well work…..but at what expense ? There are always easier. cheaper and more accessible ways for every health concern. Once I saw that a product was offer or suggested in this article I lost interest ! I am tired of making these guys rich while my wallet empties ! Simple and natural things you and anyone can do at home are best !

  6. patrick Reply

    check this website

    B) Bi-carb soda is fine to consume. Check what makes up self raising flour. Bi-crab soda also makes the water ironized in a positive way.
    mix the bi-carb and water with citric acid and guess what you make soda water. . .
    put in some grape fruit juice and it will even kill thrush for the ladies.

  7. Lance Reply

    I agree that the pHour Salts are the best. I have used them quite a bit and if money is no object… then they are the best choice I believe. However, I have found it is difficult to afford them month after month… so that’s why I was interested in the idea of using some aluminum free baking soda.

    I would love it if you could pick Dr Young’s brain for a “budget” minded approach to alkalizing. I don’t think alkalizing should be limited to only those who can afford Dr. Young’s products. While they are great, they are a small fortune!

  8. rosacea behandelen Reply

    Hi everybody!

    I am a bit confused. What is the difference between baking powder and baking soda, besides of alluminium. I went to the store and was told that baking powder also has yeast in it? Is that true?


    • Paula Reply

      Yes! Here’s what I know as a baker:
      If I do not have baking powder, or mine has gone inactive (happens a lot!), I can make it by combining 2 parts cream of tartar and 1 part baking soda.
      Now, I always have cream of tartar on hand and baking soda, so I tend to only buy baking powder when I want to be lazy (like Christmas baking time). I use the baking soda all over the house for everything. I use the cream of tartar for UTI’s (urinary tract infections). I scuba dive, and tend to love to pick up a couple or three UTI’s a year. I use 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar mixed in a fizzy drink. It works quickly! Cranberry juice wishes it worked so well.
      Yes, TMI.

      • Ginny Reply

        Wow I’ll have to try that. I’ve never heard of using cream of tartar for UTI’s, since d-mannose doesn’t work at all with me.

        Thanks again.

  9. David Reyes Reply

    To Diane,
    There is a company in Alaska that sells Betaine HCL as crystals in capules. You first use a pre-activator with your meal.
    This is the cleanest, effective product I’ve used. As I use Calcium Citrate, Magnesium Citrate and DGL (Licorage) with each meal to alkalize up. Then for the second phase of digestion if you need the HCL I recommend the above. I tend not to want to use too much HCL. If you feel you need it then go for it. Cut out wheat products, process products and definitely diary products. If you need an ice cream try coconut milk ice cream. That is the fastest ice cream product to be eliminated in your system that I’ve tried.

  10. Sally Bennett Reply

    Please don’t confuse baking soda with baking powder. Anyone who has ever baked at home will know the difference. Never use baking POWDER to drink; only for baking foods such as cakes, cookies. breads, etc. I am wondering if the reason for the four bicarbonate mineral salt combination in that it provides a balance.

  11. charly Reply

    baking sode does not do me any good. last night i tried taking half tbs with 8 oz of water in the morning i woke up with a large acne usually i do not get acne case of ginger use helps with reducing free radicals i also take epsom salt for magnesium intake as well as nuts to help with my gallstone they are really coming out , i also learned the benefit of alkaline ionized water
    for colon and other important organs cleansing , i will let y know how it goes i am more alkaline then i was 8 months ago
    hoping to get better . enjoy

  12. GodsGirl777 Reply

    Baking Soda can be purchased as “Aluminum Free” and a very good combo is to take a 1/2 teaspoon with 8oz. water chilled, mix with chia seeds, stevia and lemon juice! Lemon is a natural diuretic for those concerned with High Blood pressure. It is very refreshing and good to take if you have had a high sugar desert. The chia seeds actually attract the sugar to them to keep the sugar from entering the blood stream. They are a fiber and a great source of your Omega 3’s . Stevia is a natural sweetner that makes it taste better and also helps to keep blood sugar levels down. The salts that the Dr. mentions never heard of those before but like other people have mentioned before on this forum Baking soda is inexpensive and if you need a great inexpensive site to purchase the “aluminum free” kind go to
    Enjoy God Health

  13. George Gruber Reply

    Bob’s Red Mill baking soda is sold in various health stores (Good Earth) and is aluminum free. Tastes better than A&R….But still not exactly exciting. Works for me. 1 teaspoon a day seems to keep me alkaline for the most part if you eat wisely. No side effects to date and helps after a rich meal. Good luck.

  14. dianne Brooks Reply

    P.S. Re my question about phour salts / HCL and osteoporosis etc.
    I’ve been vegetarian / vegan for 28 years (almost no dairy), fit, post menopausal, take loads of green veggie vita mix blends daily etc. done all the right things mostly.

  15. dianne Brooks Reply

    How should I take the phour 4 salts? I’m worried that the salts, if taken too close to a meal, will nutralize the HCL that is essential in the digestion process. I have osteoporosis and understand that the HCL is a vital element in absorbing calcium. Will the alkalizing salts hinder digestion if the salts are taken at the same time as food? Really stuck on this point. Won’t the salts eliminate the HCL ?

    Any thoughts on Betaine? Really need to absorb the calcium for these osteoporotic bones.
    Thank you

  16. RUPESH SHAH Reply



  17. Jeremy Reply

    Hi, I’m not a chemist but Scott seems to know what he’s talking about, Ross do you think you could find out about this and get back to us, thanks

  18. Samantha Reply

    Baking soda contains sodium bicarbonate, and sodium is bad for you in excess therefore other salts should be used. Is this correct? But isn’t sodium bicarbonate our natural alkalising buffer in our blood?

  19. Scott Reply


    This product sounds very interesting, but I see one problem with the ingredients list. While sodium bicarbonate and potassium bicarbonate are solid compounds, calcium bicarbonate and magnesium bicarbonate can not exist as solids.

    Calcium bicarbonate and magnesium bicarbonate exist only in aqueous solution (in water). They can be made in a drink, and there are actually waters and other drinks out there with these two bicarbonate salts in them … but they cannot possibly be in Phour Salts.

    Can it be calcium carbonate or calcium chloride, and magnesium carbonate or magnesium chloride??



  20. Susan Reply

    Someone I know called the Arm & Hammer baking soda company (the company name escapes me at the moment), they confirmed that their baking soda does NOT contain aluminum.
    Also, be careful to not use baking powder, which I believe has aluminum in it.

  21. Kathy Reply

    I am also wondering about the effects of this on high blood pressure. Yesterday, I started taking the salts a few times a day. I felt they took away my cravings for sweet and diet coke. I also added some of Dr. Young’s greens and clay. The combination seemed good because I didn’t have the bad headache I used to get when I tried to cleanse. I’ve been taking my blood pressure throughout the day and it seems as if it’s down. I’m still concerned because everywhere I read about reducing sodium. Do you happen to have any websites that explain the difference between the salts? We talked to someone from Dr. Young’s office and they assured us it’s safe. Sorry to be a little skeptical but I’m a little nervous about the salt and hypertension combination. I’m willing to try anyway because it makes so much sense. Also, do you know websites that explain the need for calcium, magnesium, and potassium to lower blood pressure? The only one’s I found were really technical and I couldn’t understand them. Thank you for your information and the ability to respond.

  22. Ross Reply


    Just take a look around the blog. Seriously. Thousands of posts without any products or mention of products. You pick one that does (shock horror, I need to make a living too) and make a comment like that. Poor form.


  23. J Reply

    Don’t pretend to be insulted – this is so obviously an advertisement for a particular product, not a site about health. Arm and Hammer baking soda does not contain aluminum, and claiming that it does to push an expensive product truly is shameful.

  24. tanya Reply

    Thanks to different blog posts, clarity comes. So it’s okay to differ in a world full of variances. Obviously it leads to truth when we focus. We need variances, thanks to the both of you.

  25. Ross Reply

    Hi Laura

    Not too sure why you are so insulted by my blog post.

    If you are able to find supermarket brands that do not contain anti-caking agents then that is fantastic – baking soda is really affordable (not all of them list these ingredients btw – and I note you say that they should be pure sodium bicarb but you don’t actually know).

    I too had this question so I went to Dr Young who is a leader in this field and I shared his answer because I thought others might find it interesting. I also I recently had live blood analysis with a microscopist who swears by Arm & Hammer (he had about 20 boxes in his office!) so I understand that there is not absolute 100% right answer.

    I still stand by the fact I personally am going to continue to use pHour Salts because I think that getting a range of salts is better than just one.

    I also still trust Dr Young, who is without question the leading authority on this subject in the world.

    My final point is that throughout this article (and pretty much all of the other articles on this blog) I have written from MY perspective, about what I (yes, ME) personally believe.

    This isn’t me being dishonest, this is me blogging about my thoughts. I certainly won’t feel the shame that you want me to.

    I would also like to point out that I’ve spent the last three and a bit years blogging my heart out to try and help people to live a little healthier. That is all this blog is about.

    And while I deal with sh**ty comments like yours fairly regularly, it still hurts and it is still harsh by you.

    Anyway, I hope you have a great day regardless and wish you all the best.


  26. laura Reply

    There is no aluminum in baking soda! Arm and Hammer or the supermarket brands should be pure sodium bicarbonate as it clearly says on the box. Baking POWDER often has aluminum, but brands are readily available which do not. Shame on you! You are either misinformed or dishonest, and in either case are spreading nonsense.

  27. Abi Reply

    I want to know if Phour salts are harmful to those with high blood pressure. Thanks.

  28. Cameron Reply

    This is obviously a scam. Where are the negative comments? Hmm.

  29. Johnnie Reply

    I’m not sure if my question has already been answered but there isn’t a way to search for it. Anywho… I’m interested in purchasing these ‘salts’ but I’m confused. Calcium Bicarbonate is suggested but what’s the difference between Calcium Carbonate and Calcium Bicarbonate. I know their chemical structures and so forth are different but would Calcium Carbonate (which is typically sold as regular Calcium in most stores) be considered ‘alkalizing’? I recently purchased the ‘regular calcium pills’ at Walmart and now I’m wondering if it was a wise decision. I want the real thing. So if anyone can help me out on this it’d be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!

  30. FamilyFirst Reply

    May i know if it is ok to boil alkaline water as I wish to prepare my toddler’s milk with hot alkaline water. Also, other than for external body use, what else can I use the acidic water for? Thanks.

  31. GEORGIA Reply