The formula to calculate the Potential Renal Acid Load of a foodstuff, devised by Thomas Remer, Fredrich Manz (see Potential renal acid load of foods and its influence on urine pH), is below.
This is an important calculation as it helps us to establish the acid/base load of the foods we consume. An acid or alkaline diet is not the only indicator of health. However, if one’s diet is too acidic, this can lead to long-term health consequences. As an example, osteoporosis, is in large part caused by a condition known as metabolic acidosis – too much acid in the body. Diet plays a key nutritional role.
The mathematics of PRAL are plain to see. What is possibly more confusing is knowing what different PRAL values mean. Let us now turn to this. A value of zero is neutral. Therefore this would be neither an acidic or base effect upon the human body. Oils and fats typically have values very close to zero. This was covered in a recent mathematics program broadcast over the Open University, it might still be available if you’re able to access UK TV channels online like this.
Positive values tell us that a food is acidifying to the human body. Meats and grains produce positive PRAL values.
Negative values indicate that a food has a base (alkaline) forming effect on the human body. Fruits and vegetables produce negative PRAL values.
PRAL is not the only indicator of a healthy diet. The formula is beneficial nevertheless. It codifies preciesly why particular foods do, or do not, have acid/base effects upon the human body.