Sodium Bicarbonate

Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda as it is more commonly known, is a simple low-cost substance that can is used as remedy for a variety of ailments and chronic diseases.

How sodium bicarbonate reacts around cancer

Malignant tumors represent masses of rapidly growing cells. The rapid growth rate experienced by these cells means that cellular metabolism proceeds at a very high rate.  To fuel this growth, cancer cells are using a lot more glucose to generate their energy in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate).  Some of the compounds that are formed from this high rate of energy production include lactic acid and pyruvic acid.

Under normal circumstances, these compounds are cleared and utilized as soon as they are produced. But cancerous cells experience metabolism at a much faster rate, therefore these organic acids accumulate in the immediate surroundings of the tumor.  The high level of extracellular acidity around the tumor is one of the chief driving forces behind the metastasis of cancer tumors as the cancerous cells prefer an acidic environment which allows them to grow and spread rapidly.  Some alternative cancer doctors believe that buffering the micro-environment around the tumor with an alkalizing compound then the pH of tumors can be raised enough to begin to starve them, therefore stopping their growth and spread.

Acid/alkaline balance

The Standard American Diet (SAD) is high in meats, dairy, soda, processed foods, fast foods, poor quality fats, sugars, chemical additives, sodium, and is generally very low in nutrients.  When we consume the SAD diet, we are setting ourselves up for disease by creating an ideal low-oxygen, acidic environment for cancer to grow.

Dr Otto Warburg stated this in the 1920’s regarding the respiration of normal cells vs cancerous. “The prime cause of cancer is the replacement of the respiration of oxygen in normal body cells by a fermentation of sugar.  All normal body cells meet their energy needs by respiration of oxygen, whereas cancer cells meet their energy needs in great part by fermentation.”

Normal, healthy cells respirate by burning oxygen with a small amount of glucose in order to produce their energy;  this is aerobic respiration, or “with oxygen.”  Warburg found that cancerous cells acquire their energy by breaking down large amounts of glucose through a process known as fermentation; this is anaerobically, or “without oxygen.”  This change in energy production occurs when the cellular oxygen levels drop below 60%, and the respiration process of energy production is forced to make the switch over to the fermentation process in order for the cells to survive.  How can we create a healthy environment for our cells?  By changing the cellular environment to one that is alkaline and oxygenated.

pH refers to “potential of hydrogen” and is a measurement of whether your body is in an acidic, balanced or alkaline state.  The pH scale runs from 1-14, with 7 being in the middle (or neutral).  Anything lower than 7 would be within the acidic range, anything above 7 is within the alkaline range.  Acidic foods will add hydrogen molecules to the body, therefore making your body more acidic, alkaline foods will remove hydrogen molecules from the body, thus making you more alkaline.  When you ingest foods and liquids, the end product after digestion and assimilation of nutrients will result in either an acid or an alkaline-forming effect.  These end products are often referred to as an acid-ash or alkaline-ash. All foods and beverages can then be considered either alkaline or acidic based on the ash that is created following digestion.

Acidic cells create an acidic body and an acidic body is a precursor for disease-  A diet composed primarily of acid-forming foods inhibits nerve function, damages cells, and creates a low-oxygen environment for disease to thrive.  Some signs of excess acidity will include fatigue with general aches and pains. Acidosis is especially problematic because it interferes with normal cell function. An example of this is in the production of white blood cells which are essential for a strong immune system. Poor functioning white blood cells are produced in acidic environments, thus making it easy for infections and diseases to take hold.  People with a balanced pH are able to resist sickness and diseases because their body is naturally able to fight them off, while those who are overly acidic or overly alkaline will be more prone to illness. 

Most of the foods that people are eating today fall into the acid-forming category.  One way to begin to normalize your pH score would be to stop your consumption of the standard American diet of meat, dairy, sugar, processed foods, fast foods, coffee and sodas and start eating a diet rich in fresh organic fruits and vegetables, and by juicing a variety of raw leafy greens such as kale, chard, spinach, watercress, and wheatgrass,and making nutritious smoothies.  In addition to juicing you can drink plenty of spring water with fresh squeezed lemon juice which leaves behind an alkaline ash following digestion.  Make it your goal to eat 80% alkaline foods, with only 20% acidic. You can read more about diet with this post.

It is possible to test the pH of your saliva, and you will find instructions below on how to do so.  Your goal when testing your pH is to be around 7.2- 7.4,  this is the range where cellular oxygen is plentiful and you are slightly more alkaline than acidic.  At this range you are naturally able to resist illness and disease, whereas people who are overly acidic or overly alkaline are more prone to sickness and disease.  A common statement in regards to cancer and pH is that “most people who have cancer have an overly-acidic pH,” often measuring around 5.0.

Testing the pH

The goal with pH is 7.2-7.4

You can test your pH level using pH testing paper that are made for saliva and urine, they can be purchased from health food stores or online, and can be used to give you a measure of what is going on inside of your body. The proper strip to purchase is a narrow or short range strip, which will measure from 5.0 to 9.5 or so.

To test pH:  The first test of the day is upon waking before eating or drinking anything, otherwise wait at least two hours after eating or drinking to ensure that the food that you have  consumed does not alter your test results.  Cleanse the mouth by filling it with saliva and then swallowing or spitting it out. Fill the mouth again with saliva and spit in onto a spoon. Then insert the test strip into the saliva for 10-15 seconds. The strip will change colors based on the results.  Use the insert from the package to determine pH. Test 4 times per day to get a clear picture of what is going on inside of your body.  You will find that your pH will fluctuate throughout the day.  This is normal .  Your goal is to register slightly more alkaline than acidic, around 7.2 to 7.4, it is at this level oxygen levels are plentiful.

How to test urine and saliva with litmus strip

Most people with cancer are generally acidic, registering around a 5.5 or lower.  If you are extremely acidic, you may not even be registering at all depending on how low the calibration of the strip is compared to your level of acidity.  Additionally, it takes time to raise the pH from an acidic state to an alkaline range, sometimes taking weeks to even begin to register on the tape and then up to 12 weeks before you can reach your goal of 7.2- 7.4.  It is at this level that oxygen is plentiful and cancer cells become inactive and begin to die.  Once this level is reached, you must hold yourself there until the cancer is completely gone.  It is important not to over-alkalize your body either as this can be just as detrimental to your health as being overly acidic.  Also, please be aware that you cannot return to your old habits after having cancer.  Make changes to your diet and lifestyle and plan on sticking with them for the long term.

Anyone using sodium bicarbonate to adjust their pH should be monitoring their saliva and urine pH to make sure that they do not over-alkalize.  The goal for saliva is 7.2- 7.4 as discussed above, and for urine the balanced point is 6.2, although it is normal for the urine to be in the acidic range when it is tested in the morning and the body will become more alkaline as the day progresses.

Using baking soda and lemons to relieve cancer pain:

Cancer pain can also be related to the buildup of lactic acid around cancerous tumors, therefore using something to neutralize this acid may offer relief from cancer related pain. Even though lemons are acidic, they will cause an alkaline reaction in the body following digestion. You can neutralize the lactic acid buildup by drinking 2 cups of filtered water combined with 1/2 tsp of baking soda and the juice of one lemon and a little stevia (if needed for sweetness).  This will cause an alkaline tide (which is a natural release of sodium bicarbonate within the body) that will neutralize the lactic acid build up around tumors and relieve cancer related pain.

One should limit their consumption of baking soda to only 1 tsp per day, and it is always taken on an empty stomach when there will be no food intake for at least 2 hours.  Early morning or late evening would be appropriate times for this.  Anyone using sodium bicarbonate for any reason should also monitor their saliva and/or urine pH.  The goal for saliva pH is 7.2- 7.4 and the urine balanced point is 6.2.  This is explained more below.

Sodium bicarbonate is not appropriate for certain cancers and situations:

In general, most people who eat the standard American diet that is heavy in meats, dairy, refined wheat, sugar, processed foods, fast foods, soda, coffee, alcohol, etc. are going to be suffering from an acidic imbalance.   Additionally, certain tumors are acidic in their makeup, these include the solid tumors such as those found in the breast, lung, stomach, pancreas, colon, liver, uterus, ovary, prostate, as well as skin cancers. People with solid tumors tend to do better when they adhere to eating an plant-based diet that consists of fresh or lightly cooked vegetables, juicing fresh vegetables, raw fruits, making fresh fruit smoothies, including a variety of nuts and seeds, along with complex carbohydrates. No red meats are allowed on this diet but it can include limited amounts of pastured eggs and wild caught fish, if animal proteins are needed.  People with solid tumors may find some benefit by taking 1 tsp of sodium bicarbonate per day on an empty stomach to alleviate excess acids.

Other cancers are alkaline in their makeup, these include myeloma, leukemia, lymphoma, and soft tissue sarcomas. A person with an alkaline-based cancer should not use an overly alkaline diet or overly-alkaline therapy such as sodium bicarbonate as these may worsen their situation. People with these types of cancers tend to do better when they follow a diet is more balanced, so they can include a moderate amount of clean animal proteins (grass-fed beef, venison, and bison, along with organic chicken, wild-caught fish, and organic eggs), moderate amounts of healthy fats, fresh or cooked vegetables, fresh vegetable juices, fruits, nuts, seeds, with limited complex carbohydrates.  You can read more details about specific diets and supplementation plans for specific cancers with this link.

Additionally, sometimes people may have an overly-alkaline imbalance that is due to something else. If your cancer-related pain worsens after taking sodium bicarbonate, or if you are experiencing a steady increase in your cancer-related pain as the day progresses, or if you have recently had chemotherapy or radiation, these may be indications that your body is also suffering from an alkaline imbalance.  You can read more about how to remedy this situation with supplements and lipids this post.

Dosage and precautions:

  • Do not use this protocol if you have leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma, brain cancer, or soft tissue sarcomas as these are alkaline-based tumors. Further alkalizing the body is not what you want to do with these cancers.  You can read more about these cancers with this post.
  • It is important to note that sodium bicarbonate depletes potassium, folate, and b12 levels so be sure to supplement with both if you are going to take sodium bicarbonate as part of your protocol.
  • Only use sodium bicarbonate for the short term, about 2 weeks to make an adjustment to the pH and then discontinue use. You want strong stomach acids to properly break down foods and absorb their nutrients, baking soda has the potential to alter the stomach pH and this can cause more health problems for you.  There are better ways to alkalize the body for the long term and they include drinking lemon water, juicing and blending vegetables and fruits, juicing wheatgrass, supplementing with trace minerals, and deep breathing to expel excess acids. 
  • It is important to only take the baking soda mixture on an empty stomach as it will interfere with digestion and your ability to break down nutrients. Perhaps taking this 1 hour before bed or in the early morning hours would be the most appropriate times to avoid that problem.
  • Limit intake to only 1 tsp per day, and this is always taken on an empty stomach close to bedtime or in the early morning.
  • Excessive intake of baking soda can cause high sodium levels in the body (hypernatremia) and hypertension, metabolic alkalosis, congestive heart failure and edema triggered by high blood levels of sodium.   Read more contradictions with this link.
  • Do not combine baking soda with graviola, paw paw, MMS, DMSO, and some other alternative protocols as it will render them ineffective
  • Do not use if you are on a sodium restricted diet or if you have high blood pressure.
  • Do not combine sodium bicarbonate with antacids
  • Ideally you should consult a doctor before taking this.
  • If sodium bicarbonate does not offer you relief from cancer related pain and intensifies it, then you may already have an alkaline imbalance, please read this post for more information.

Look for Natural Sodium Bicarbonate

Arm & Hammer and other commercial brands use a chemical process that turns mined trona ore into the soda ash, therefore look for natural brands that are mined directly and remain in an unprocessed state.  Look for Bob’s Red Mill or something similar.

Additional Resources

Read more about acid alkaline balance and how to test your pH

Read more on the connection between a systematic candida infection and cancer.

Bicarbonate increases tumor pH and inhibits spontaneous metastases.

Using sodium bicarbonate to treat acidic conditions of the body

Healing basal cell carcinoma with baking soda and coconut oil

Trevor Smith used baking soda as part of his healing protocol

John Curry used baking soda as part of his protocol for prostate cancer

Sodium Bicarbonate – Full Medical Review (e-book)

  pH PERFECT pH Test Strips – pH Test Kit

Related Articles
Cancer is a wake up call which needs to be addressed on multiple fronts.  It is the result of an overly toxic body with an overwhelmed and collapsed immune system due to eating nutritionally depleted diets, exposure to toxins, and having poor lifestyle habits. Research an anticancer diet, adding supplements, detoxing the body, and making lifestyle changes so you can address a cancerous situation with a multifaceted approach.


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