Do you know your pH level? Are you pH balanced? A simple test strip that you can get at Amazon makes it easy.

You've probably heard "pH" mentioned occasionally in commercials for feminine products, but when was the last time you actually checked your own pH levels?

The pH scale measures how alkaline or acidic something is. In short, when your body is too acidic that’s bad, when it’s more alkaline that’s a good thing. Your pH should ideally be slightly above 7.0 (pH balanced). When your body is highly acidic it may be more vulnerable to diseases and medical conditions like diabetes and hypertension (high blood pressure). Read more about that here.

So how do you test your pH level? You might be surprised at just how easy it is. I went on Amazon and purchased this Hydrion pH tester (pictured to the left). It is a roll of test strip paper that you can use to determine the pH of your bodily fluids. I use them to test my saliva. You can also test it on other fluids like vaginal secretions, urine, fluid in your nose, etc. However keep in mind that some fluids will naturally have a different pH than others -- for instance, the normal vaginal pH is 3.8-4.5.

Just tear off a strip and lick it. It immediately starts changing colors. There's a color chart on the tape roll that shows your pH level, ranging from 0 to 13. If your color is medium to dark green or closer to dark blue you're in good territory. If it's closer to orange or red that means you are highly acidic and need a serious diet overhaul. Of course, this is just a rule of thumb test and a doctor could provide a more thorough test.

On this particular test my pH result was yellow-green, which means I could use an alkaline boost at the moment. (See a picture of a second test I took later on below.)

A quick way to do an alkaline boost is to drink a glass of water with a teaspoon of baking soda. I also like to add a dash of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar -- even though these seem to be acidic drinks they help boost your alkalinity. They are called alkaline-yielding drinks. Another long-term way to keep your alkalinity high is to simply eat more alkaline foods and less acidic foods on a daily basis.

Foods that make you more acidic:
- soda
- coffee
- tomato sauce
- alcohol and beer
- beef and fat
- fried foods
- butter

Foods that make you more alkaline (good stuff):
- greens and most vegetables like broccoli
- garlic
- soy
- distilled water
- lemon juice
- teas

Click here for a full chart listing all acidic and alkaline foods.  The first chart is alkaline and the second is acidic. Click the printable link at the top, print it out and keep it hanging on your refrigerator for reference. Also, refer to this page for tips about having an alkaline diet.

Here is a test I took some time after the first one -- this time it is blue green.

This is considered a normal alkaline reading, a little higher than neutral, which is good.

Food is your medicine. Is it better to invest in good foods now or to pay for prescriptions and treatments later? You are in 100% control of what you put into your body.

* Consult your doctor before starting any new diet plan or health related regime. Every body is different.

Review of GT's Enlightened Organic Raw Kombucha Ginger Flavor

I am on a quest to incorporate better foods and drinks (namely juicing) into my diet. While I'm not yet sure if I want to start a separate food blog for , I do think its important to talk about foods and nutrition. 

This is a review of GT's Enlightened Organic Raw Kombucha drink. I purchased this bottle in a small market for $4.99. It's about the size of a 20 oz bottle of soda (a little smaller).

I understand the importance of probiotics in your diet, especially as a woman. For instance, women who are prone to yeast infections sometimes just need more probiotics (good bacteria) in their systems. Probiotics also aid the digestive system and can make you more regular. Persistent colds and other health issues can sometimes be fixed with probiotics.

This Kombucha drink contains ginger juice, which has it's own set of health benefits and has even been shown in studies to help people prone to certain conditions, like diabetes. The taste was like drinking a pickle and ginger flavored soda pop. That might not sound so appealing at first, but when you think of all the good bacteria entering your system it is very tasty indeed. I enjoy the flavor and will probably get the ginger again.

About an hour after drinking GT's Kombucha, let's just say I had to go to the bathroom. It left me feeling light and energetic.

I would recommend Kombucha for anyone who is having digestive problems or issues with constipation. Also, remember that probiotics also sometimes help with persistent yeast infections. You may be surprised at the many health benefits of drinking Kombucha regularly.

I give GT's Organic Kombucha drink 4.5 out of 5 stars -- the only slight downside was the high retail price, but when you think about the health benefits it offers, and the fact that it's organic, it's inexpensive compared to the price of traditional medicines and solutions for digestive issues and problems related to bad bacteria. 

SodaStream makes store-bought soda a distant memory.

Almost a year ago I called for a boycott of Pepsi products, including its soda brand, due to a tasteless commercial the company chose to run during the 2011 SuperBowl. Soon after this, Pepsi suddenly dropped to #3 in the soda market. Even if we can’t pinpoint this boycott as the straw that broke the camel’s back in this situation, I call it justice served.

Though I’m not much of a soda drinker anymore, I still like a little bit of the bubbly stuff from time to time.

More recently I came across a new product that makes it even easier for me to continue my unwavering boycott of Pepsi while satisfying my occasional craving for soda. It is called SodaStream -- it is a way of making your OWN soda at home.

It’s so simple it’s scary (mostly to the major soda companies, like Pepsi).

You have to purchase a SodaStream unit (costs about $80 on Amazon), which comes with your first carbonation tank. You fill the plastic 1-liter bottle (also included with the starter kit) with spring water, then screw the bottle onto the front.

Press the button a few times to inject carbonation into the water. When you hear it buzz, it’s ready. If you like your soda extra bubbly press it a few more times.

Pull the bottle forward gently to release the pressure then unscrew it. You’ve got your carbonated water.

Next, add some flavor (SodaStream sells bottles of soda flavor, including orange, ginger ale, cola and even energy soda) and viola, you’ve got soda that tastes just as good, if not better than the soda you’ll buy in a store.

Here are some other benefits:
  1.          The soda flavors have natural ingredients and don’t have high fructose corn syrup, which makes it a bit healthier than classic store-bought sodas
  2.          You can use the machine to make your flat soda bubbly again
  3.          No electricity or battery power required
  4.          Mix the flavors to make your own custom soda “brand”

I give this product 4 stars out of 5. 

I would give it 5 if not for the need to get a new carbonator every couple of months or so (they're available at a few retail stores), but to be honest ladies when you break down these costs on a yearly basis compared to buying several bottles of soda a week at $2 a pop, it is a valueYou can also trade in your empty carbonator for a deposit credit when you get a replacement one.