The unique thing about this mineral is that it is so important for your body, yet the masses don’t even know about its importance. Unfortunately, more than 80% of Americans lack it and suffer from various health issues and most still don’t know about it. This mineral is nothing else but magnesium.
Dr. Carol Dean has explained how important this mineral is. She is a widely experienced naturopathic and medical doctor. He is also the lead author of “Death by Medicine” (a seminal paper published in 2003). In this paper she claims that modern medicine is one of the biggest causes beyond the death of Americans.
Dr. Dean has also authored a book, “Death by Modern Medicine.” She is not just another doctor, she is also the winner of the Arrhythmia Alliance Outstanding Medical Contribution to Cardiac Rhythm Management Services Award in 2012 given by a major allopathic organization, the Heart Rhythm Society of the UK.
She can be considered as an expert on the mineral magnesium. She has been studying it and has published papers on it for 15 years. She published the 1st edition of The Magnesium Miracle in January 2003. Currently, she is working on the third edition of book.
Dr. Dean claims that she has the following goals:
She is driven by the goal to tell everyone about the importance of magnesium. She wants everyone to know how much their body requires and the amazing benefits of this simple mineral.
Magnesium is crucial for your entire body because it does so many biological functions. This includes:
- Activation of nerves and muscles
- Helping generate body energy through activation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)
- Works as a building block for DNA and RNA synthesis
- Helps improve digestion of proteins, fats and carbohydrates
- Works as a precursor for neurotransmitters like serotonin
- Despite its so much importance, only a small percentage of people are getting sufficient amounts of it in their diet.
When it comes to minerals like calcium, people are taking it in high amounts and even overusing it. This can be dangerous because it is important to maintain a balance of the minerals for proper health.
If your body has excess amounts of calcium but is deficient in magnesium, it will cause muscle spasms. It can also impact your heart.
According to Dr. Dean this causes reduction in nerve and muscle function because magnesium is required for this. When your body doesn’t get adequate amount of magnesium, the muscles will enter spasm. The role of calcium is to cause contraction of muscles. When there is perfect balance, your muscles will work perfectly as they will be contracting and relaxing and generating activity.
Magnesium is also highly important for your cardiovascular health. If there is imbalance between calcium and magnesium it may also result in heart attack or even sudden death.
Dr. Dean makes a stunning statement when she says that our heart is the organ with the highest quantity of magnesium in our body. Left ventricle is where it is present in the highest amounts. If there is deficiency of magnesium, it can impair the functioning of the heart.
The last 3 decades have seen doctors everywhere advising women to prevent osteoporosis by taking calcium supplements. In fact, we have seen so many foods been added with additional calcium for preventing calcium deficiency. However, the numbers of cases of osteoporosis have still kept growing.
According to Dr. Dean, she has come across stats that show that osteoporosis has increased by over 700% in a single decade. And this was despite women taking higher levels of calcium.
In fact, there has been a whole bunch of myth created around calcium. It is claimed that you should get 2 times the amount of calcium as magnesium. Almost all the supplements are based on it. People today take 1,200-1,500 mg of calcium and not more than a few hundred mg of magnesium.
The fact is that the 2 to 1 ratio is nothing more than an error that occurred during translation from French. Jean Durlach is the French researcher who claimed that the higher limit in your food, supplement and water should not be more than 2 parts calcium to 1 part magnesium.
It was due to the misinterpretation of what he meant that led to the concept of 2 to 1 ratio. However, 1 to 1 is the more appropriate ratio.
At the same time both vitamin D and vitamin K2 affect the balance of the 2 minerals. This has been mentioned by Dr. Dean in so many blogs. According to her high dose of vitamin D could mean overworking of magnesium and result in its deficiency.
All these 4 nutrients are essential to your body and work by supporting each other. They help making your health stronger and prevent so many severe health problems. Imbalance of these nutrients has been related to heart attacks and stroke. It has also been found to cause vitamin D toxicity.
The role of vitamin K2 is to ensure calcium remains in the right place. If there is any deficiency, it can cause buildup of extra calcium in all the wrong places. You should take vitamin D orally along with food, additional magnesium, or supplemental vitamin K2.
Avoid taking heavy doses of vitamin D supplements along with low quantity of magnesium and vitamin K2. It may result in vitamin D toxicity and magnesium deficiency symptoms.
Both vitamin K2 and magnesium balance each other. One of the biggest benefits of magnesium is that it helps in regulating high blood pressure.
It is important to maintain a balance between all the 4 nutrients vitamin K2, magnesium, vitamin D3, and calcium when taking them. When maintained properly, these nutrients work synergistically.
You can get your supply of calcium from seeds, dairy products, deep green leafy veggies and nuts. A homemade bone broth is also a good source. Put leftover bones over low heat and allow them to simmer in the day. This will help in extracting the calcium present in the bones. Once you have added a few tablespoons of vinegar into it, you can add it to soups or stews or drink it as such.
It’s important to take the “skin” formed on the top. It is loaded with crucial nutrients such as healthful fats and sulfur.
Remember that it’s not easy to find magnesium with ease in the modern food supply.
What does Dr. Dean have to say?
According to Dr. Dean, more magnesium is farmed out of our soils compared to calcium. Around a century ago, we used to get around 500mg magnesium from our normal diet. Today, we are fortunate to be getting 200mg. That’s why it has become more important for us to supplement with magnesium.
Thanks to industrial agriculture, most of the soils have been drained off the essential minerals including magnesium. If you are consuming biologically-grown organic foods, which are from soils that have received mineral fertilizer treatment, you could still be able to get lots of magnesium from what you eat.
There is high amounts of magnesium in the center of chlorophyll. It allows plants to be able to use the sun’s energy. Other rich sources of magnesium include:
- Green leafy veggies (Swiss chard, spinach)
- Seeds (sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and pumpkin seeds)
- Juicing can also help you increase the quantity of nutrients you get from your veggies.
But most of the food that that is grown today is deficient in magnesium and various crucial minerals. In fact, herbicides present in them, like glyphosate, work as chelators. This causes obstruction in both the uptake and use of all kinds of minerals. This makes it even more important to get magnesium supplementation.
There has still been no commercial laboratory test that can readily and accurately determine magnesium status in our tissues. You cannot think of getting a serum magnesium blood test. It is going to be mostly inaccurate because not more than 1 percent of magnesium present in our body gets distributed in our blood.
You can visit some specialty labs where they offer RBC magnesium test which can be highly accurate. Overall, it can be quite beneficial to learn how to identify the symptoms of magnesium deficiency if you want it treated on time.
If you have the following symptoms, they are probably early symptoms of magnesium deficiency:
- Loss of appetite
The symptoms can get aggravated if you don’t get timely treatment. It can also lead to other signs like personality changes, seizures, numbness, abnormal heart rhythms, tingling, cramps, coronary spasms and muscle contractions.
In “The Magnesium Miracle,” Dr. Dean gives a list of 100 helpful factors that can help in determining if there is lack of magnesium in your body or not.
Once you have decided to start taking magnesium supplementation, you must understand that you will find many types of magnesium forms. For example, there are magnesium oxide supplements which can be the most affordable forms. However, this form is difficult for the body to absorb. In fact, only around 4% of it gets absorbed.
Remaining 96% of it simply passes through the intestines. That is where the laxative effect comes from, and it is beneficial if you have constipation.
You can also improve your magnesium status by using Epsom salt baths. Another alternative is foot baths. Epsom salt is nothing else but magnesium sulfate. It can be readily absorbed through our skin.
You can also apply magnesium oil topically (which is magnesium chloride).
You can find different types of magnesium supplements. It is available in so many forms because magnesium is a mineral that tends to get bound to other substances. Interestingly, you will almost never find 100% magnesium compound supplement. The only exception is pico-iconic magnesium. This means that the substance accompanying magnesium within the supplement will affect not just the mineral’s absorption but also its bioavailability. It is also likely to provide slightly different health benefits.
The varying benefits of these different compounds are as following:
Magnesium Sulfate & Magnesium Hydroxide
Magnesium hydroxide is widely known as milk of magnesia. Both these are commonly used as a laxative. They should be taken as per directions because it is easy to overdose them.
You should take magnesium glycinate if you want to have a supplement with highest levels of absorption and bioavailability. It is chelated magnesium. It is perfect for improving the level of magnesium in your body.
This is non-chelated form of magnesium which is bound to some fatty acid or organic acid. Magnesium oxide has around 60% magnesium in it. It is helpful in softening your stool.
Magnesium chloride & Magnesium Lactate
It contains around 12% magnesium. However, it has higher absorption compared to other types.
This type is relatively newer kind of magnesium supplement. It is highly capable of entering the mitochondrial membrane.
Magnesium citrate has citric acid and magnesium, and is known for its laxative properties. Another option is magnesium taurate. The combination has magnesium, taurine and amino acid. It is helpful in calming both the mind and the body. Magnesium carbonate has 45% magnesium and is known for its powerful antacid properties.
Dr. Dean has also said that prescription drugs and stress are the 2 major factors causing exhaustion of magnesium in our body. It is unfortunate that the conventional medical approach for stress involves the use of prescription drugs. Thus, the situation could become extremely bad.
This is how Dr. Dean explains this:
She explains that the scenario can be easily recognized when you or your family member visits your doctor. You will be under lots of stress. When you are under high level of stress, your body is simply losing magnesium. You burn magnesium as it is helpful in supporting the adrenal glands.
Magnesium is helpful in preventing depression and anxiety, and also helps in relaxing muscles. So when you are too stressed out, it means that you are losing magnesium. This will cause the muscles in the blood vessels to become tight. The tightness will result in increasing your blood pressure.
When you visit your doctor, they will prescribe a diuretic. The job of a diuretic is to drop your body’s fluid levels. This will reduce the pressure in the blood vessels. This will cause reduction in the blood pressure.
Diuretics will also cause the draining of magnesium. When you return to your doctor after a month, you will still be having blood pressure. The reason is simply – you have lost more magnesium. Then your doctor will give you a calcium channel blocker. This can be seen as a good step because calcium levels will rise if the magnesium levels fall. This will leave the blood vessels further tighter. That’s why they want to block calcium.
However, it is not known to them that magnesium itself works as a natural calcium channel blocker. It is highly likely that your doctor may give you angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. This is also a drug for blood pressure. Thus, you will have 3 drugs.
When you return after 2-3 months, your blood will be tested to ensure that they are not causing any harm to your liver. They will find that you have higher levels of cholesterol. Your will have higher blood sugar too. Your doctor is going to say that they “caught” high blood sugar and cholesterol, but the fact is that it is they who actually caused them. They will then give you more medications for them.
According to Dr. Dean when there is reduced level of magnesium in your body, it can cause uncontrolled cholesterol. Magnesium is responsible for balancing the enzyme creating cholesterol. That’s why it is beneficial in regulating cholesterol.
Dr. Dean further states that statin drugs kill the magnesium-balanced enzymes. People with diabetes usually suffer from magnesium deficiency. Drugs are likely to add to diabetes as they reduce your magnesium levels.
This is many times the case when the drugs have fluoride. There are fluoroquinolone antibiotics like Cipro which have high quantity of fluoride and they are known to cause side-effects. Fluoride is also part of so many drugs, such as anti-anxiety drugs, painkillers for arthritis, and certain medications for cholesterol.
When magnesium comes in contact with fluoride, it will bind to it to form magnesium fluoride. So the level of magnesium in your body gets depleted. There are many drugs that can cause chronic inflammation.
According to Dr. Dean, calcium causes inflammatory effects. However, magnesium has strong anti-inflammatory benefits.
Therefore, it is important that you maintain the perfect balance between magnesium and calcium. Taking excess of calcium without enough magnesium could cause heart disease.
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