Nutritional Medical Pioneer

Carl J. Reich, M.D.
As told to Bob L. Owen, Ph.D., D.Sc.

Part Six
The Key Element in Ionic Calcium Sufficiency

By the mid-1970s Dr. Reich had recognized an acidic saliva pH as being the most common and easily-identified verification of the ionic calcium deficiency syndrome. As a result that indicator became the backbone of his study. “This was especially good news,” he said, “because the key to such study is the salivary pH test, which can be administered and accurately read by untrained personnel.” The minimal cost at that time was a mere half a cent per test. It is still inexpensive and relatively accurate, thus helpful to a “not seriously ill” person as it is a prime indicator of those who are most likely to develop such a condition.

Recognition of lifestyle defects responsible for the diagnosis was important. But equally so was the cellular hyperacidity reflected by the pH of simple secretions of saliva. This test of saliva represents the most physical-chemical characteristic that serves to identify a disease or condition, and in this case an ionic calcium deficiency.

The pH of saliva is best tested with litmus paper in the range of 5.5 to 8.0 such as the pH test paper available from this web site, or most health food stores. The test requires a very small piece of the paper, perhaps an inch or so. Performance of the test is very simple and requires only a few minutes. These basic instructions are important: The test should be conducted early in the morning before putting anything in your mouth, even water, or brushing your teeth; or at least one to two hours after eating, drinking or chewing gum. Therefore, for many people the best times are about 11 a.m. or before lunch, or 4 p.m. before dinner.

Doing the test: Clean the mouth of old saliva then produce fresh saliva and dip the paper in it for a couple of seconds. Do not lick or suck the paper. Within 10-15 seconds compare the color of the strip with the color chart furnished with the paper. Interpret as follows:

  • 7.5 slightly alkaline (excellent)
  • 7 neutral (neither alkaline nor acid; but preferable to acidic)
  • 6.5 slightly acid (concern)
  • 6.0 mildly acid (very concerned)
  • 5.5 and lower, moderate to strongly acid (danger zone)

Remember: The result of this simple-and-easy-to-perform test is not an absolute proof of ionic calcium deficiency. But, if an acidic reading is or becomes consistent over a period of days or weeks, Dr. Reich’s many years of clinical testing indicated that such low or lowering pH is a very strong indication that one’s body is at least becoming seriously deprived of ionic calcium and sun-on-skin or supplemental vitamin D. It further indicates that time is of the essence to correct such a situation.