Alkaline Diet: What is Allowed & Foods to Avoid (with 3-Day Diet Plan)

Clinical review: Tatiana Zanin
Registered Dietitian
March 2022

An alkaline diet involves the consumption of alkaline food (like fruit, greens and tofu), aiming for 60% of all food intake to be just alkaline-based. The other 40% of calories can be made-up of acidic foods, like eggs, meat and bread. This division is usually made with types of meals consumed: for example, if you eat 5 meals per day, 2 should be make-up of acidic foods, and the other 3 should be made-up of alkaline foods.

According to the creators of this diet, this diet can help to decrease blood acidity, which can prevent the emergence of illnesses like cold and flu. This diet also popularly known to detox the body, and is generally used by people who are looking to lose weight. 

Nonetheless, there are not enough studies available to prove that an alkaline diet can decrease acidity levels in the blood. Therefore, before starting a weight loss diet, you should be assessed by a registered dietitian to assess your general health status, your goals and nutritional necessities, so that a personalized diet plan can be made. 

List of food that is allowed

Food that is allowed with an alkaline diet includes: 

  • Fresh fruit, including acidic fruit like lemons, oranges and pineapple 
  • Vegetables, like lettuce, garlic, cauliflower, cucumber, spinach and broccoli
  • Legumes, like peanuts, chestnuts, walnuts and pistachios 
  • Protein, like tofu, tempeh and protein powder 
  • Herbs and spices, like cinnamon, curry, ginger, basil, mint and mustard seeds 
  • Drinks, like water, herbal teas, lemon water and green tea 
  • Others, like apple cider vinegar and fermented food like kefir and kombucha 

Moderately alkaline food like honey, brown sugar, coconut, lentils, quinoa, chestnuts and corn is also permitted.

Food to consume in moderation 

Acidic food that should be consumed in moderation when partaking in an alkaline diet. Examples include:

  • Grains, like buckwheat, rice, corn, oat, wheat, rye and pasta 
  • Protein, like chicken, eggs, pork, lamb, fish and seafood 
  • Processed meat, like prosciutto, sausage, and mortadella 
  • Processed food, like fast food meals, premade sauces, hamburger and pizza 
  • Dairy, like milk, butter, yogurt and cheese 
  • Drinks, like alcohol, coffee and soda 
  • Sweets, like jello. Ice cream, cakes and sugar 

If you are consuming these foods, they should be eaten with alkaline food 

Example of a 3-day diet plan

The following table demonstrates a 3-day alkaline diet plan, which can give you an idea of what your meals and snacks should look like:

Meal

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Breakfast

Chamomile tea with ginger + 1 pancake made with almond flour, vegetable-based milk and cinnamon 

1 cup of almond milk + 1 tapioca with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter 

1 smoothie made with vegetable-based milk, mango, banana + 1-egg omelet

Morning snack

1 bowl of fruit salad with 1 tablespoon of oats 

1 cup of green tea + 10 cashews 

1 boiled apple with cinnamon + 2 walnuts 

Lunch or Dinner

4 tablespoons of chickpea salad with cucumber, carrot and inion + 1 grilled fish fillet + salad with lettuce, arugula and spinach dressed with lemon juice, sesame seeds and olive oil 

2 small grilled eggplants stuffed with tofu, herbs and olive oil + 1 dessert plate with coleslaw, boiled carrots and pineapple 

1 grilled chicken breast + 1 dessert plate with spaghetti squash and carrots with pesto sauce + 2 tablespoons of sauteed mushrooms 

Afternoon snack

1 green juice + 2 Brazilian nuts 

1 unsweetened Green yogurt with half of a diced banana, sunflower seeds and 1 tablespoon of honey 

1 smoothie made with soy milk and avocado

Throughout the day, you should ensure adequate fluid intake, with teas, water and unsweetened fruit juices. It is important to avoid coffee and soda. 

Broccoli salad with lemon recipe 

Lemon, broccoli and garlic are very alkaline foods. This salad can be used as a side dish for any lunch or dinner. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 broccoli
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Salt to taste 

How to prepare:

Steam the broccoli for about 5 minutes, being sure to sprinkle a pinch of salt over it. Then chop up the garlic and sautee in oil until golden. Then squeeze the juice of the lemon into the garlic, and mix with the broccoli so that the sauce is well-absorbed. 

Alkaline green juice recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoon of diced avocado
  • 1/2 a cucumber 
  • 1 handful of spinach 
  • Juice of 1 lemon 
  • 200 ml (6.5 oz) of coconut water
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil

How to prepare:

Mix all ingredients in a blender until well-combined. Then drink without straining. 

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Atualizado por Tua Saude editing team, em March de 2022. Clinical review por Tatiana Zanin - Registered Dietitian, em March de 2022.

References

  • SCHWALFENBERG, Gerry. The Alkaline Diet: Is There Evidence That an Alkaline pH Diet Benefits Health?. Journal of Environmental and Public Health. 1-7, 2012
  • SANGMA, Jelang; SUNEETHA, Jessie Suneetha; KUMARI, Anila. Concepts of acid alkaline diet. The Pharma Innovation Journal. 8. 4; 932-935, 2019
Show more references
  • MINISTÉRIO DA SAÚDE. DesmistifIcando Dúvidas sobre Alimentação e Nutrição. 2016. Available on: <https://bvsms.saude.gov.br/bvs/publicacoes/desmistificando_duvidas_sobre_alimenta%C3%A7%C3%A3o_nutricao.pdf>. Access in 17 Feb 2022
Clinical review:
Tatiana Zanin
Registered Dietitian
Graduated in Clinical Nutrition in 2001 and has a Master’s in Clinical Nutrition. Licensed to practice under the CRN-3 in Brazil and the ON in Portugal