I doubt that it would directly *cause* an imbalance, per se, but possibly indirectly. For example if you were chronically low in stomach acid and therefore weren't fully digesting proteins and absorbing minerals, then you start taking HCl, all of a sudden you're absorbing these things... But that's not so much an imbalance as it is suddenly having things you were supposed to have... Btw, in case you have pure HCl w/out pepsin you'll want to find a pepsin source to take before or with the HCl, they need each other to work. I noticed that HCl alone after a meal often felt like it was sitting in my stomach, not reacting. Then one day I was reading Joy of Cooking to see if papaya seeds were edible (duh) and it mentioned they were a good source of pepsin. So every so often I buy a whole papaya and dry out the seeds. I keep 'em in a brown paper bag, take a pinch or 2 or 3 w/ the HCl, works well. I don't go crazy w/ it - I read elsewhere on CZ that papaya seeds in large quantities are a male contraceptive if I recall correctly. IDK if that's true.