We need a full spectrum of minerals for optimum health and function, but arguably the most important is magnesium.
Few people are aware of the enormous role magnesium plays in our bodies. Magnesium is by far the most important mineral in the body. After oxygen, water and basic food, magnesium may be the most important element needed by our bodies.
“You can trace every sickness, every disease and every ailment to a mineral deficiency”
Linus Pauling – two time Nobel Prize winner
Although Dr Pauling was referring to the general mineral depletion in our soils and thus our food supply, he was also referring to magnesium, perhaps unbeknownst to him.
Consider Dr. Norman Shealy’s statements, “Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiency” and that, “magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body. A magnesium deficiency may be responsible for more diseases than any other nutrient.”
When you consider the fact that 80% of Americans and other Western populations are deficient in magnesium, and the fact that modern diseases have exploded in the past few decades, then it is reasonable to think that there may be a causative link and that Linus Pauling and Norman Shealy may be on to something.
Causes of magnesium deficiency
There are many causes; here is an abbreviated list.
- Magnesium deficiency can be caused by increased amounts of fluoride, chlorine and calcium.
- Depleted soil and magnesium deficient produce due to chemicals e.g. pesticides and fertilisers.
- Poor diets especially the consumption of processed and junk foods.
- Insufficient stomach acid.
- Reduced level of transport proteins.
- Low water consumption.
- Diseased intestines for instance candida albicans overgrowth.
- Increased phosphorus in diet drinks or increased potassium or sodium.
- Supplemental iron, which can impede magnesium absorption.
- High consumption of tea, spinach, soy powders, soy milk, and chard, which have ingredients that interfere with magnesium absorption.
- Many different medications.
- Insufficient vitamin D, which is necessary for the body’s utilisation of magnesium.
- Rarely, people have conditions of magnesium wasting where too much of this mineral is lost through the kidneys.
Why don’t we just eat more magnesium dense foods?
In 1992, the official report of the Rio Earth Summit concluded “there is deep concern over continuing major declines in the mineral values in farm and range soils throughout the world”. This statement was based on data showing that over the last 100 years, average mineral levels in agricultural soils had fallen worldwide by 72% in Europe, 76% in Asia and 85% in North America.
According to health journalist Larry Trivieri, Jr., author of The American Holistic Medical Association Guide to Holistic Health, overall “the mineral content of soil used to grow today’s group is one sixth of what it was fifty years ago, due to commercial farming methods…
The days are long gone when healthy living simply meant getting the right nutrients from our foods. Nowadays our soils are jam packed with an array of harmful chemicals not to mention mineral deficient plants and animals that eat the plants.
Conditions related to magnesium deficiency?
Magnesium deficiency can affect every organ and system in the body, which is what you would expect from a substance that is involved in over 300 metabolic reactions in the body. Hence the list is endless; however some common diseases and symptoms include:
- Magnesium is linked to many major health conditions including; depression, chronic fatigue syndrome, ADHD, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, sleep problems, migraine, osteoporosis, premenstrual syndrome, angina, cardiac arrhythmias, coronary artery disease and atherosclerosis, hypertension, type II diabetes, asthma , Alzheimer’s, cancer.
- Persistent thirst as a result of a lack of electrolytes including magnesium.
- With regard to skeletal muscle, one may experience twitches, cramps, muscle tension, muscle soreness, including back aches, neck pain, tension headaches and jaw joint (or TMJ) dysfunction.
The first symptoms of deficiency can be subtle, since most magnesium is stored in the tissues, leg cramps, foot pain, or muscle ‘twitches’ can be the first sign.
- Other early signs of deficiency include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and weakness. As magnesium deficiency worsens, numbness, tingling, seizures, personality changes, abnormal heart rhythms, and coronary spasms can occur.
- People with magnesium deficiency often seem to be “uptight.” Other general symptoms include a salt craving, both carbohydrate craving and carbohydrate intolerance, especially of chocolate, and breast tenderness.
- Continuing with the symptoms of magnesium deficiency, the central nervous system is markedly affected. Symptoms include insomnia, anxiety, hyperactivity and restlessness with constant movement, panic attacks, agoraphobia, and premenstrual irritability. Magnesium deficiency symptoms involving the peripheral nervous system include numbness, tingling, and other abnormal sensations such as zips, zaps and vibratory sensations.
How to supplement
In addition to eating foods with appreciable amounts (allowing for soil depletion) of magnesium, supplementation offers the chance to get more magnesium needed for optimum body function and health.
The best forms of magnesium are magnesium taurate, magnesium glycinate, magnesium citrate, magnesium malate, magnesium oratate and magnesium oil; magnesium oil (magnesium chloride hexahydrate) is the new, apparently more absorbable form, delivered through the skin (transdermal).
Magnesium is involved in over 300 metabolic reactions in the body; hence the importance of this mineral to optimum health and multiple disease prevention.
A deficiency in magnesium pervades our modern World due to many factors, including the consumption of nutrient deficient foods as a result of soil depletion from pesticides, chemical fertilisers and over farming practices.
Another contributing factor is the mass consumption of junk and processed foods, which conspire to either deplete magnesium as in the case of sugar or prevent its absorption as in the case of anti-nutrients in certain foods.
Due to the depletion of magnesium in our diets, it is becoming a must for most people to supplement.
Magnesium oil offers the best absorption rates.
Modern medicine is supposed to help people not hurt them, but with their almost total ignorance of magnesium, doctors end up hurting more than they help, since many of the medical interventions deplete magnesium levels when they should be replenishing them. Many if not most pharmaceutical drugs drive magnesium levels into very dangerous zones and surgery done without increasing magnesium levels is much more dangerous than surgery done with.
The foundation of medical arrogance is actually medical ignorance and the only reason ignorance and arrogance rule the playing field of medicine is a greed for money and lust for power. Human nature seems to be at its worst in modern medicine when it should be at its best. It is sad that people have to suffer needlessly and it’s tragic that conventional medicine has turned its back on the Hippocratic Oath and all that it represents.