Optimizing Workouts for Intellectual Performance

post by Ritalin · 2013-07-06T19:56:54.641Z · score: 9 (16 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 40 comments

So this year I've stopped working out, and my grades have improved drastically, but at the cost of losing muscle mass and gaining fat, and becoming physically slower and lazier just as I became faster and more active intellectually. One effect I especially noticed was the disappearance of that perpetual state of happiness/satisfaction that comes from frequent physical exertion, which I think had a tendency to get in the way of a feeling of urgency regarding studies; why bother with tiresome and frustrating intellectual exercise when physical exercise yielded results and pleasure/satisfaction much more easily and reliably?

Anyway, this got me thinking: "I need to figure out a training that is optimized for intellectual performance. Aspects that might be interesting to work on would be:

These ideas I'm throwing around from a position of extreme ignorance. I've tried hiring nutritionists, but their diets were optimized for bodybuilding, not for intellectual efficacy, and were incredibly troublesome to follow. These involved about five to eight meals a day, large amounts of meat or meat substitutes, which is expensive to sustain, and me in a perpetual state of either hunger or digestive lethargy, plus permanent muscular soreness from the training regime that goes with it... and then there's the supplements.

So, yeah, I'm no gwern, but I'd love to figure out a diet that allows me to work at maximum efficacy. Other concerns, such as feeling strong or looking attractive or even dancing well, are quite far behind in priority. How should I go about this? How about you lads and ladies? What's your experience with dieting/working-out? More importantly, what does the research say?

P.S. I tried to read "Good Calories Bad Calories", but I never managed to finish it: it spent so much time attacking the current paradygm that I grew tired of waiting for it to actually list and summarize its recommendations. If anyone here finished reading that and drew out the conclusions, I'd love to hear them.

P.P.S. The main post will update as the discussion advances; once enough proper information is gathered, a top level post might emerge.

 

40 comments

Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by PECOS-9 · 2013-07-06T21:25:41.976Z · score: 15 (17 votes) · LW · GW

So this year I've stopped working out, and my grades have improved drastically, but at the cost of losing muscle mass and gaining fat, and becoming physically slower and lazier just as I became faster and more active intellectually. One effect I especially noticed was the disappearance of that perpetual state of happiness/satisfaction that comes from frequent physical exertion, which I think had a tendency to get in the way of a feeling of urgency regarding studies; why bother with tiresome and frustrating intellectual exercise when physical exercise yielded results and pleasure/satisfaction much more easily and reliably?

Are you sure there isn't another factor causing improved grades? My impression was that it was pretty well-established that exercise improves mental performance.

Or possibly it's the amount of time you spent exercising, which gave you less time to do other things? Were you spending a lot of time working out? If so, you may want to look into high-intensity interval training to get the benefits of physical exercise in as little time as possible.

Another idea: save your workouts for the end of the day, so you don't have the post-workout feeling all day and will still feel like you need to get stuff done?

comment by CurtisSerVaas · 2015-07-11T16:40:24.273Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Yeah, I've noticed that sometimes I find it harder to do intense/hard thinking if I work out in the morning.

comment by [deleted] · 2013-07-06T20:16:45.773Z · score: 12 (12 votes) · LW · GW

I've been giving this a lot of thought as well lately. I think the people to follow here are chess players: they have to maintain intense mental concentration on a set of difficult problems for games that can last seven hours. Then they have to review the game and prepare for the game the next day, which might be another seven-hour marathon. Chess players talk a lot about the importance of physical fitness for maintaining high-level tournament performance.

Emulating chess players might be more efficient than looking into the research. Maybe someone who is willing to put a lot of time and effort into carefully reading hundreds of studies and doing all the necessary background research could come up with something optimal for their body, but it's a lot easier to just copy chess players and might not yield much worse results. Chess players are trying to win in a highly competitive system that gives them quick and unambiguous feedback about their performance, after all, which could easily mean better incentives and selection effects than what you get in academic research or individual intellectual's attempts to optimize their own intellectual performance for goals more far-off and abstract than victory in tomorrow's game.

Swimming and tennis seem to be popular choices for chess players to stay fit. Obviously the goal is stamina and not muscle, though.

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-06T21:45:17.648Z · score: 12 (12 votes) · LW · GW

So, what is it that chess players do? What regimens do they follow?

comment by Stabilizer · 2013-07-07T02:59:29.297Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW · GW

I found this here:

Carlsen revises his opening habitually while jogging on a treadmill which keeps him mentally sharp and physically fit. As Carlsen describes, "These long tournaments are quite tiring and long games are very tiring, especially at the end." He recently told The Associated Press, "If you are in good shape and can keep your concentration you will be the one who will profit from your opponents' mistakes.” Adding, “In general towards the end of the tournaments younger players have that advantage so the other players will have to try to equal that by having good fitness as well." As we get older, it becomes more important for all of us all to stay physically fit to maintain a competitive advantage in a cut-throat world.

Carlsen’s physical fitness supports his style of favoring the middle and long game while he avoids over-thinking opening exchanges. "I do focus quite a bit on the opening," Carlsen said. "But I have a different goal. Some people try to win the game in the opening. My goal is to make sure I get a playable position and then the main battle is going to happen in the middle game and the later game."

And this here:

Frankly, Anand is over 40 and he is surely not the fittest person around. I know he goes to the gym but I’m not sure of his energy levels. After all, Anand is an overweight middle-aged man and that could reflect in his game at some stage

Chess is not a 100 metre race and fitness is a minor issue. However, in a match of high intensity between players with equal talent and skills, fitness could turn out to be a factor. I thought the eighth game loss for Anand was because of fatigue. He defended impeccably after choosing a strange line but he committed a horrible blunder... That move was not for lack of understanding or knowledge. It looked to me as fatigue...

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-06T22:09:12.185Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

this is probably highly individual since I expect mood and stress effects to dominate minor physiological variation from different schemes.

Diet wise try intermittent fasting, lots of people see mental performance benefits. Be sure to get enough potassium and some saturated fats (whole milk is unambiguously good for lowering CVD rates). Vitamin D also has nootropic effects for people when recovering from deficiency. I recommend the version with K2, which lowers tooth decay incidence.

comment by NancyLebovitz · 2013-07-07T14:06:30.063Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

whole milk is unambiguously good for lowering CVD rates

Even for people with lactose intolerance?

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-07T22:36:24.652Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Lactose intolerance is easily and cheaply solved with lactase pills. Lactase is lactase, the pill form is chemically indistinguishable from the stuff your gut produces. I am lactose intolerant myself and average 2 cups of milk/day.

edit: I should mention that a small percentage of people show "true" lactose intolerance in that they get bad symptoms from ANY undigested lactose in their system, for these people lactase pills are not 100% effective. The majority of lactose intolerant people do have some tolerance.

comment by NancyLebovitz · 2013-07-08T14:41:12.120Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Is there research on whether whole milk has the same good effects on lactose intolerant people that it does on lactose tolerant people? I've gotten cynical about theories based on the idea that the biology sounds plausible.

Also, when you say whole milk, are you including whole milk cheese, yogurt, etc.?

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-08T17:53:25.367Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

There's nothing magical about milk that you can't get elsewhere if you have concerns. http://consensus.nih.gov/2010/lactosestatement.htm#q4

In this particular case, the chemistry is simple enough that I would find it shocking to discover that drinking either lactaid, or regular milk with lactase pills would have any bad effects that overwhelm the benefits.

I'm not 100% sure about the micronutrient makeup of other diary products.

comment by NancyLebovitz · 2013-07-09T09:04:12.852Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

My concern is more that people who are lactose intolerant might have some additional features which mean that milk isn't quite as good for them (or even slightly bad for them) which aren't affected by taking lactase.

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-10T01:48:21.035Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

That would be very weird/unlikely IMO. It's not like lactose is actually a variety of compounds the way, say, gluten allergies are actually an umbrella for quite a few things going on. In terms of n=1, I get regular blood panels and my system seems to be kicking ass on a milk heavy diet.

comment by elharo · 2013-07-06T21:43:52.851Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Good Calories Bad Calories is science journalism, not a diet book. Skip to the end if you want to know Taubes' recommendations, or just get the New Atkins for a New You, which is a diet book. Short version of Taubes' recommendations, which are essentially the same as Atkins, LCHF, Paleo, and other low-carb plans:

  1. No sugar (including HFCS, Agave Nectar, honey, fruit juice, etc.)
  2. No rice
  3. No corn
  4. No wheat or grains
  5. No potatoes
  6. Avoid all products labelled low-fat; e.g. skim milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, margarine, etc.

Different plans vary a bit--fruit or no fruit, milk or no milk, beans or no beans, cured meats or no cured meats--but that covers the essentials.

comment by Ishaan · 2013-07-08T02:38:54.495Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Short version of Taubes' recommendations, which are essentially the same as Atkins, LCHF, Paleo, and other low-carb plans:

Minor correction: The paleolithic diet does actually allow potatoes and other tubers, as well as honey and fruit sugar (as those are all foods that were eaten prior to agriculture). They argue specifically against eating agricultural staples such as legumes, grains, and possibly dairy...not carbohydrates in general.

comment by elharo · 2013-07-08T11:57:45.852Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Thanks. I stand corrected.

Potatoes I can see, given the paleo diet's motivations. Fruit and honey I find much more questionable, especially honey. But I suppose if you limit yourself to honey you've personally harvested from wild beehives without the benefits of modern technology like bee suits, you'll probably be fine. :-)

The research on all of this is weak. There's enough to justify elevating some form of low-carb to the null hypothesis. However I'm not aware of any studies that attempt to distinguish between the various flavors of low-carb diets like paleo vs. Atkins.

comment by Ishaan · 2013-07-08T14:52:09.790Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

However I'm not aware of any studies that attempt to distinguish between the various flavors of low-carb diets like paleo vs. Atkins.

The main difference is that the organizing principle of LCHF/Atkins is just that - replacing carbohydrate with fat, sometimes even to the point of ketosis. Studies that compare fat/carb ratio in diets to health factors are applicable to the whole carb vs. fat debate.

The organizing principle of the Paleo memeplex is that there are a few key things about modern lifestyles that negatively impact health - some popular targets include shoe-wearing, chairs, sit-down toilets, sedentary lifestyles, and most famously high grain consumption.

It's true that the paleo diet ends up being relatively low carb, since grains are the major carbohydrate source...but the central claim doesn't actually make any testable predictions about carb/fat ratios. Rather, the major testable prediction of the Paleo diet is that the human body is ill equipped to digest ]large amounts of grain.

So the relevant studies would be those that look at the effects of grains and components such as phytates, gluten, lectin...etc, on leaky gut syndrome, digestive gut flora, inflammation, nutrient absorption, and such - there wouldn't be much overlap between these studies and carb/fat ratio studies.

There's enough to justify elevating some form of low-carb to the null hypothesis.

Maybe? It's difficult to make broad prescriptive claims in nutrition, and I'm not sure "low fat" and "low carb" are precise enough categories. My guess would be that both low fat and low carb win out over the standard diet simply because cutting out either one is likely to cause some calorie reduction and a compensatory increase in vegetable consumption.

The argument from the Paleo-memeplex would be the "null hypothesis" for diet should be based off of what we ate prior to agriculture. In the absence of evidence, evolutionarily novel foods are guilty until proven innocent, while ancestral foods are innocent until proven guilty. (Of course, the question of what exactly constitutes an evolutionarily novel food is not simple)

Fruit and honey I find much more questionable, especially honey. But I suppose if you limit yourself to honey you've personally harvested from wild beehives without the benefits of modern technology like bee suits, you'll probably be fine. :-)

Hehe - well, as a sweetener it's certainly an improvement on straight sugar and as a calorie source it's an improvement over starch.

Not sure what the objection to fruit would be, though. Fruit juice, maybe, since it's easy to over-eat when your food is in liquid form.

Advocates of the Paleo diet would claim that that the ideal diet has near zero grain content. Sugar, on the other hand, is not intrinsically harmful...it's just that we frequently overdose. The ideal diet does contain some sugars.

comment by elharo · 2013-07-08T18:16:33.354Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I think that the null hypothesis has to be based on the actual studies that have been done, not on poorly founded hypotheses about what our ancestors did and did not eat in the ancestral environment.

Fruits are probably only an issue for those of us trying to lose weight. However most of the fruits we eat have been bred over hundreds of years or more to be larger and sweeter (i.e. contain more fructose) than natural fruits. And some fruits are higher in starches than others, so if you're trying to lose weight and failing, it's worth cutting these out. Not all fruits are equal here. Berries are likely better for you (or at least less bad) than apples and bananas, for example. Again, this is not not really worth worrying about unless you want to lose weight.

I suspect a low fat diet actually does not win out over a standard diet, because low fat diets replace fats with carbs. Even worse, in practice they replace fats with simple carbs: pasta, bread, and the like. Low fat sweets are the worst of all because they replace fat with sucrose. Sugar and other simple carbs (and maybe all carbs) affect how your body stores and releases fat. The real story is much more complex than simply eating less and exercising more. You have to consider how and why our bodies produce and respond to insulin, glucagon, and other hormones that control fat storage and metabolism.

comment by buybuydandavis · 2013-07-06T22:16:42.089Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Basically no easy carbs. I had one diet that worked, and it was restricting easy carbs. Meats, vegetables, fruits, legumes, and small portions of easy carbs. No concern over fat, just no deep fried foods.

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-06T21:54:43.770Z · score: 0 (4 votes) · LW · GW

That's kind of the opposite of every dieting advice ever... That it were right would be freaking scary.

comment by elharo · 2013-07-06T22:27:34.473Z · score: 9 (11 votes) · LW · GW

Read Taubes. It's actually not the opposite of every dieting advice ever. It's the opposite of most dieting advice for about the last 40 years or so, but prior to that this was the standard weight loss diet going back into the 19th century (the first time in human history where obesity was actually a thing, or enough of a thing for doctors to worry about it.) For a long time Robert Atkins was widely viewed as a crackpot, but he didn't actually invent the diet he put his name on. He was mostly just repeating what he had learned in medical school, and then used successfully in his clinical practice.

But yes it is scary, and Taubes explains in great detail how nutrition science went off the rails starting back in the 1930s and is only now beginning to recover.

comment by NancyLebovitz · 2013-07-08T14:43:46.782Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Any thoughts about the intellectual effects of relatively simple (running, weight-lifting) movement vs. complex (martial arts, rock-climbing)?

comment by [deleted] · 2013-07-06T23:30:28.414Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

One effect I especially noticed was the disappearance of that perpetual state of happiness/satisfaction that comes from frequent physical exertion, which I think had a tendency to get in the way of a feeling of urgency regarding studies

Interestingly, I've had the exact opposite experience; working out relaxes me from which I observe an increased productivity. Perhaps the resultant change in productivity depends on the procrastination's cause. Procrastination is sometimes categorized into two types-- the relaxed type (feels negatively toward his/her work and blows it off) and the tense-afraid type (feels overwhelmed by pressures). I self-identify as the latter, and reducing stress helps me a lot.

minimizing the amount of other tissue (including muscle in excess of what is strictly needed for a comfortable daily life)

This is a very strange criterion. Increased muscle mass generally means increased athletic ability, which most would consider a good thing. Body fat as well has a large range in which it is considered healthy. Why stay at the minimum of these ranges?

I think you might do well to separate your nutrition research from your fitness research. As you are looking into brain function, you'll likely be interested in reading up on nootropics.

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-06T23:52:34.883Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in athletic ability, save for the strictly functional ability to sustain going to school on a bicycle every day (thus saving a crapload of money), and to carry myself in a balanced and acceptably graceful way when walking down streets and hallways (which is to say, fit enough that I don't trip over myself or get wound up after three flights of stairs).

The abilities to run fast, climb high, swim deep, row fast, or fight hard, are of absolutely no use to me whatsoever in the environment I live in. If I lived in, say, South Africa, where having a fit body in fight-or-flght condition is a matter of life and death, that would be a different matter entirely, but I don't, and it isn't.

And nootropics get me in the tense-afraid type state very quickly: I inevitably crash and burn, and it takes me a few days to go back to normal. Also, they very much hamper my sense of empathy: I become a mini-Ridcully, a mental locomotor engine which will only go forward, cannot steer, and which completely disregards the feelings of those around him in his enthusiasm to perform and achieve. They just aren't a sustainable option for me.

comment by Douglas_Knight · 2013-07-07T13:43:28.335Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Could you be specific about which nootropics have been bad for you?

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-07T14:40:21.606Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Metilphenidates specifically, in the form of Concerta XL and [Medikinet(20 and 10 mg).

I would like to add that I'd like my diet/regimen to be as inexpensive/accessible/sustainable as possible. That means as little drugs as possible, especially prescription drugs.

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-07T07:45:03.376Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

you care not one whit for lifestyle changes that, compounded, impact CVD and cancer rates significantly?

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-07T08:15:54.350Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Please elaborate.

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-07T09:36:19.140Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Well, for instance, dietary changes can strongly impact triglyceride:HDL ratio, which is a strong independent predictor of cardiovascular disease. But really, there are a thousand small ways that exercise and diet are tied to both quality and quantity of life. Everything from joint health, to organ reserve, to sleep quality, to mood.

I can appreciate the desire to establish minimums in the interests of efficiency, as I am this way with cardio myself. As far as exercise goes, the negative health effects of stress probably dominate differences in exercise regimes, so I'd optimize for that. Diet has a similar cost:benefit analysis in that you probably get the vast majority of benefits out of the first few (obvious) interventions with decreasing marginal benefit after that.

comment by linkhyrule5 · 2013-07-08T05:40:18.532Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

... Mind elaborating?

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-08T06:56:38.192Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

on the first few obvious interventions? In order of intervention.

Diet:

  1. Nudging total caloric intake in the direction you want

  2. Slowly replacing micronutrient poor foods that commonly recur in the diet

  3. seeking out specific foods for their nutrient content

  4. further optimizations (everything else)

Exercise:

  1. Anything

  2. Averaging several hours of moderate activity per week

  3. splitting this activity between resistance exercise and cardio

  4. further optimizations

The temptation is to optimize too much, too soon, and wind up with an amazing plan that you don't actually follow. Between the guy who followed a sub-optimal exercise plan and the guy who occasionally started the perfect exercise regime for two weeks, guess who has better outcomes?

comment by Fhyve · 2013-07-07T05:38:34.590Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Have you looked at rhodiola and L-theanine? They tend to counter some of the negative effects of more intense nootropics.

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-07T08:15:33.805Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

No I haven't, thank you for bringing them to my attention; I'll be sure to give them a good look.

comment by [deleted] · 2013-07-17T04:51:19.772Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I'm a bit late here, but I've tried rhodiola, and it has exactly the same empathy-eating effect for me that you're describing. Have you considered nicotine? It's a nootropic that probably has prosocial and anti-anxiety effects (subjectively, it does for me), and most of the addiction potential apparently comes from MAOIs in tobacco, which aren't present in gum, patches, or e-cigarettes. There's also kava; it's not a nootropic, but it's prosocial and anti-anxiety and AFAIK doesn't negatively impact cognition.

comment by Ritalin · 2013-07-07T08:46:11.884Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Okay, giving stimulants a look:

  • Genistein: ... I'm having lots of trouble interpreting that...
  • Modafinil: GAH! WALL OF TEXT! This is going to take some time... Luckily I'm on a holiday, but this is going to be interesting to research...
comment by Douglas_Knight · 2013-07-08T03:54:02.612Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

To a first approximation: modafinil has the same benefits and costs as methyphenidate and amphetamine, but with a better benefit to cost ratio.

comment by Camaragon · 2013-07-08T04:07:41.090Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

You should give Juicing a try :] www.66dayhealthmastery.com Yes, I know, tacky site but it has worked wonders for me, my PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), my skin and energy in general! :D I like this because she isn't to the extreme everything-is-better-raw vegan and actually adjusted her beliefs when given sufficient proof AND backs up her articles with scientific studies and references. I still follow a high raw vegetalble diet, no milk and refined sugars but do occasioanlly indugle in some salmon, chicken or steak (I love steak too much to let it go) once or twice a week. She can go to the extreme though, in terms of buying a expensive water filtration system to make sure her water has the righ PH level and has no flouride, chlorine or any harmful chemicals in it but yeah that's high level raw organic vegan tier hahaha, all you need really to start is fruits, vegetables and a juicer or blender. :D Just wanted to clarify that this diet only intends the fruit and vegetable juice as a supplament, not a replacacement to whole meals. I have enrolled to do Boxing or Muay Thai for physical excercise and before that I dancened, hula hooped, ran or did jumping rope for cardio and planking for core strengthening and it has worked but now I just want to achieve something elsewhile working out :p

Maybe, though, you just need to re-organize or be stricter with your schedule to include both working out and study time.

Edit: typing on a ipad is tricky

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-08T19:46:43.578Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

backs up her articles with scientific studies and references.

Many many "health" sites do this but actually have incredibly poor standards of evidence. Many are engaged in scientism, find any study that even tangentially links to what you're talking about (many times even just rat studies!) and cite it, counting on the fact that pretty much no one follows up on reading through those studies.

I'm not saying you should stop doing something that has worked well for you, but beware generalizing.

comment by Camaragon · 2013-07-09T04:09:43.622Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I assumed she posted on her site the articles backed up by references she posted on her Facebook group but I can't find them on her site and I can't link you the facebook one (unless you make an account and like her page first), so I'm sorry for my assumption and poor writing that doesn't do what she is all about justice.

She has a pretty straightforward and simple philosophy, it's to alkalanize the body using only natural and organic means because cancer and tumors thrive on a acidic environment and it also reduces our body's capability to absorb minerals and nutrients as well as impair a cell's ability to repair itself. The body is naturally suppose to be in a slightly alkaline PH, around PH 7.3 to 7.4 and you don't need to be part of her group to confirm that. Her philosophy states that the body is a wonderful natural machine capable of fending and fighting off most diseases and all that we need to do really is to not hinder it's capability to working in optimum condition by eating the right things and avoding the bad. She does and offers a "juice cleanse", it's what she's famous or infamous for (you replace your meals with juice) but I didn't and don't reccomend her for that. I only reccomended her because Juicing as a supplement can do wonders in aiding alkalinizing the body as well as take in minerals and nutrients in a easy couple of gulps. I like her group because she is active in it and always answers questions I have like "Why don't carnivores in the wild get more cancer?" And "so cow's milk is bad for us because it is not meant for us what about about drinking human milk?" and always provides me with factual answers.

I aplogize for being unclear but I do not see how I am generalizing, fruits and vegetables are good for you and dairy (cow's) and refined sugar is bad. Might have just gotten a wee bit teensy too excited on my first post because this is a health and fitness topic and I am sort of a healh and fitness buff :p

comment by RomeoStevens · 2013-07-09T04:19:46.574Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · LW · GW

because cancer and tumors thrive on a acidic environment and it also reduces our body's capability to absorb minerals and nutrients as well as impair a cell's ability to repair itself.

Changing the pH balance appreciably in the body of a healthy person is not possible. http://sciencebasedpharmacy.wordpress.com/2009/11/13/your-urine-is-not-a-window-to-your-body-ph-balancing-a-failed-hypothesis/