I write this column at the end of April, I wonder what our world will be like when this magazine is published this summer. My hope is that lockdowns will have ended and that the pervasive fear that has kept many of us indoors will have lifted. After all, nothing is better for body, mind, and soul than getting outside, breathing fresh air, and taking in sunshine whenever possible. Sunshine is the best source of natural vitamin D—a crucial player in the immune system that functions to protect us against bacteria, viruses, and other agents that threaten the body’s well-being.
Fueled by fear of the novel COVID-19 coronavirus, many people place their hope in yet-to-be-developed drugs and vaccines. But when these are rushed onto the market, they will undoubtedly come with damaging side effects. It is better to first look to the immune system for protection against viral infections. I recently listened to an interview with a naturopath who said that he and a colleague were showing no antibodies for the virus even though they worked closely with a staff member who had been infected and thus would have also been contagious at some point in time. He credited a nutritious plant-based diet, supplemented with probiotics and enzymes, for his and his colleague’s immunity.
As students of the Cayce readings, we know that such an approach is completely in line with what the readings suggest. In 1935, a 23-year-old woman asked Cayce whether inoculations against contagious diseases would be necessary for her prior to traveling from New York to the United Kingdom. She was told in reading 480-19: “So far as the body-physical is concerned, the adherence to the use of carrots, lettuce, and CELERY EVERY day at a meal or as a portion of the meal will insure against any contagious infectious forces with which the body may be in contact.”
Perhaps thinking that this response was too simplistic, the young lady restated her question: “Can immunization against [the contagious diseases] be set up in any other manner than by inoculation?” Cayce remained firm in what he had already advised, clarifying his response somewhat: “As indicated, if an alkalinity is maintained in the system—especially with lettuce, carrot, and celery, these in the blood supply will maintain such a condition so as to immunize a person.”
A bold statement with far-reaching implications: that an alkaline-based forming diet incorporating lettuce, carrots, and celery can make us immune to contagious infections. Really? Let’s look at why a proper acid-alkaline balance is important. All body fluids have a measurable degree of acidity or alkalinity. The scale used to measure these acid or alkaline levels is the pH (potential Hydrogen) scale, which runs from 0 to 14. Values below 7 represent increasing acidity, while those above 7 represent increasing alkalinity. A value of 7 is neutral.
Most body fluids must be kept slightly on the alkaline side for optimal metabolic function. Blood should be at or near a pH of 7.4. Maintaining this alkalinity is so essential for survival that the body mobilizes a special buffering system to neutralize excess acidity whenever the scale tips. The body then draws on its reserve of alkaline mineral elements to help restore alkalinity. However, the body’s alkaline minerals must be regularly replenished by food.
Most fruits and vegetables are alkaline-forming, whereas meats, grains, and most fats and dairy products are acid-producing. To maintain an optimal level of health and immunity, we should derive 80 percent of our foods from the alkaline-forming category and restrict the acid-forming foods to 20 percent of total intake. This is also the fundamental guideline on which the nutritional principles of the Cayce diet are based.
Excess acidity in the body interferes with cellular metabolism, decreases lymphatic function, and slows down energy production. Metabolic and digestive enzyme processes are disrupted, impairing digestion and allowing toxins to accumulate. As a result, the body becomes less resistant to colds, infections, and chronic diseases.
A healthy lifestyle with adequate sleep, rest, meditation, prayer, and proper stress management also helps to keep the system alkaline by reducing the production of acidic toxins and more readily eliminating them when they do arise. Once again, these lifestyle guidelines are the very same recommendations Cayce shared decades ago.