According to research conducted by scientists, taking baking soda in the form of a daily supplement could help mitigate the debilitating inflammation caused by autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis.
They have some of the first evidence of how an inexpensive antacid that can be purchased without a prescription can encourage our spleen to promote an anti-inflammatory environment, which could be therapeutic when dealing with inflammatory diseases, according to a report published in the Journal of Immunology by researchers from the Medical College of Georgia.
They were able to demonstrate that when rats or healthy individuals drank a solution of baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, it became a trigger for the stomach to create more acid so that it could digest the following meal.
Additionally, it signals to the spleen, which is an organ about the size of a fist, that there is no need to generate a protective immune response. These mesothelial cells have received relatively little research.
According to Dr. Paul O’Connor, a renal physiologist who is also the corresponding author of the paper, this finding serves as a form of reassurance to our kidneys that “it’s most likely a hamburger, not a bacterial infection.”
The mesothelial cells that line body cavities, such as the one that contains our digestive tract, cover the exterior of our organs to quite literally prevent them from rubbing against one another.
This is done by covering the surface of our organs.
It was discovered roughly a decade ago that these cells also provide an additional layer of protection; they have tiny fingers that are called microvilli that sense the environment and warn the organs that they cover that there is an invader and an immune response is required.
This discovery was made possible by the fact that these cells have microvilli.
According to the hypothesis put up by the MCG researchers, ingesting baking soda sends a message to the spleen, which is a component of the immune system, to tone down the immune response.
According to O’Connor, drinking bicarbonate has a direct impact on the spleen, and researchers believe that this occurs via the mesothelial cells.
One-half to one teaspoon of baking soda, completely dissolved in at least four ounces of water, is the recommended dose for people to take on a daily basis in order to alkalinize the pH of their bodies or for use as an antacid.
According to their findings, the conversation, which takes place with the assistance of the chemical messenger acetylcholine, appears to promote a landscape that shifts in a way that is protective against inflammation.
In the spleen, as well as the blood and the kidneys, they discovered that after drinking water with baking soda for two weeks, the population of immune cells called macrophages shifted from primarily those that promote inflammation, called M1, to those that reduce it, called M2.
This discovery was made possible by the fact that the M1 cells were eliminated from the diet.
Macrophages are the first immune cells to respond when the body is prompted to mount an immunological response.
They are arguably best recognized for their capacity to eat waste products produced by the body, such as debris left behind by damaged or dead cells.
In the case of the laboratory animals, the issues at hand were hypertension and chronic renal disease; it was these issues that prompted O’Connor’s lab to consider baking soda.
The kidneys are responsible for a wide variety of functions, one of which is maintaining a healthy balance of essential substances including acid, potassium, and salt.
According to O’Connor, one of the complications that might arise as a result of kidney illness is that the function of the kidneys is hindered, which can lead to the blood becoming overly acidic.
The increased chance of developing cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis can be among the significant outcomes.
According to O’Connor, this “essentially sets the whole system up to fail” in the long run. Baking soda has been found in clinical trials to not only lower acidity levels but also halt the advancement of kidney disease.
As a result, this treatment option is now being made available to individuals who suffer from this condition.
“[Therefore], we began to ponder the question, how exactly can baking soda reduce the advancement of renal disease?” According to O’Connor.
When they did this, they noticed decreased quantities of M1s and higher M2s in their renal disease model as a result of consuming the common ingredient.
This indicated that the anti-inflammatory effect had begun to take effect.
They were able to observe the same response when they looked at a rat model that did not include any genuine kidney damage.
Therefore, the basic scientists collaborated with the researchers at the Georgia Prevention Institute located at the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) to recruit healthy medical students who drank baking soda dissolved in water and had a response that was comparable to the initial results.
According to O’Connor, “the transition from an inflammatory profile to an anti-inflammatory profile is taking place everywhere.”
“First, we noticed it in the kidneys, then we noticed it in the spleen, and now we noticed it in the peripheral blood.”
According to him, the changing landscape is most likely caused by an increased conversion of some of the pro-inflammatory cells into anti-inflammatory ones along with the actual generation of more macrophages that are anti-inflammatory.
The researchers also saw a change in the composition of other types of immune cells, such as an increase in the number of regulatory T cells. Regulatory T cells are known to dampen the immunological response and assist in preventing the immune system from targeting our own tissues.
This change toward anti-inflammatory effects was maintained for a minimum of four hours in human subjects and three days in rat subjects.
O’Connor has high expectations that persons with autoimmune disease would one day be able to achieve similar outcomes by consuming baking soda.
“You are not really turning anything off or on, you are just pushing it toward one side by supplying an anti-inflammatory stimulus,” he adds, in this example, away from detrimental inflammation.
“You are not really turning anything off or on,” he says.
“You are just pushing it toward one side.” It has the potential to be an extremely risk-free method of treating inflammatory diseases.
The scientists believe that the anti-inflammatory stimulation that baking soda produces is the reason why the spleen became larger in response to the consumption of baking soda.
Infection can also cause the size of the spleen to expand, and doctors will frequently palpate the spleen when they are concerned about a significant infection.
Acetylcholine is a molecule that acts as a communicator, and it is known to be used by cells other than neurons.
Baking soda, when combined with acidic substances like buttermilk and chocolate, as well as the heat from the oven, causes the batter in cakes and other baked goods to expand and rise.
Other examples of acidic ingredients are lemon juice and vinegar. Additionally, it can help raise the pH of pools, it can help clean your teeth and baths, and it can be found in antacids.