Thanks, Christinam. I have read of acid/alkaline balance–though not the particular approach you mention–but I am not in agreement with it at this time.
I personally think potassium, though important, is not a prime metabolic simulator like calcium. Let me explain.
Humans, like any carnivore or omnivore, must have a body that is metabolically flexible to be able to push through short famines without dying, but also be able to turn on the growth switch after meals to renew tissues and grow. One of the ways the body ‘senses’ this is by the flux of nutrients through the blood and hepatic (liver) circulation. If you are fasting, muscles are being broken down into muscle-meat amino acids and phosphorus and your liver is using the amino acids to make glucose and the phosphorus is mostly excreted. It would be foolish to ramp up the metabolism in a time of fasting and metabolic breakdown, so muscle meat amino acids and phosphates help signal to the body to slow the metabolism. Since potassium is mostly an INTRA-cellular ion, potassium increases in times of catabolism.
Some say too much dietary muscle meat is therefore metabolically damaging, and I agree. If a hunter-gatherer killed a buffalo, and ate of it, there would be more than an increase in muscle meat pouring in from the meal; there would also be collagen amino acids from the bones and skin cooked in the cauldron, and there would be calcium from the bone broths. There may also be carbs if the humans ate some sugar or starch along with the meat, and the pot may be seasoned with salt or cooked in sea water.
Thus, the distinguishing features of a meat meal versus fasting catabolism are the balance of amino acids (collagen aminos IN ADDITION TO muscle meat aminos), and calcium from the bones. Carbohydrates and sodium from the meal would also help signal to the body that a meal was eaten, since carbs and sodium are not speedily broken down by any tissues during fasting.
In summary, calcium, glycine (collagen), carbs, and sodium help the body distinguish between having just eaten a meal with nutrients to help rebuild the body (the ‘GO’ signal) versus a time of fasting with an out-pour of muscle meat aminos, phosphorus, and potassium.
Based on this approach, the following ratios are important to help promote a ‘growth’ metabolism:
Calcium : Phosphorus
Carbs : Protein (generally)
Glycine (Collagen) : Muscle Meat
Sodium : Potassium
Looking through this lens, eating too much potassium in a meal without a proper balance of sodium could be slowing to the metabolism. This is where, I think, the ‘alkaline’ focus loses (and where vegans suffer). Of course, our bodies need potassium and phosphorus and protein. But having salt with your fruit and tubers, and calcium and collagen with your meats and proteins will help ‘tell’ the body a meal was just eaten, and now it is time to grow. Otherwise, the body may go on presuming its is still fasting and continue to increase the stress hormones.