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T
he Dean of Wellness
 

The Miracle of Magnesium

© Carolyn Dean

The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled The Dean of Wellness by Carolyn Dean . View all columns in series

How do I get enough magnesium is a question that I''m frequently asked. If there is enough magnesium in the soil where green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds are grown then we have a chance to obtain magnesium from our diet. Organic foods may have more magnesium, but only if farmers replenish their soil with magnesium-rich fertilizers. Most fertilizer used on factory farms relies heavily on nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium to make plants grow and appear healthy. However, if magnesium and other minerals and micronutrients are not introduced the plants may look good but are not packed with the nutrition we need. Growers should be required to use top-quality fertilizers and should test their crops for the long list of nutrients we need to stay healthy.

In general, to get as much magnesium as possible in the diet, eat plenty of organic leafy green vegetables, nuts and seeds every day. Adding green drinks to your menu will help you achieve a higher magnesium status. However, if you are suffering from the following symptoms you may need supplemental magnesium: muscle twitches, tics, or spasms; "Charlie horse" (the muscle spasm that occurs when you stretch your legs); insomnia or restless sleep; stress; back pain; headaches, cluster headaches, migraines; stiff and aching muscles; bones and joints that need continued chiropractic treatment; weakness; hypoglycemia; diabetes; nervousness; hyperactivity; high blood pressure; osteoporosis; PMS; constipation; angina; kidney stones; aging; depression; heart attack; irregular heartbeat; attention deficit disorder; aggressive behavior; chronic fatigue syndrome; stroke; anxiety; confusion, muscle weakness; hiccups; seizures; high-strung; exhaustion from exercise.

Supplementing with magnesium must also take into account the balance between calcium and magnesium. Finland, which, from 1973 to 1999 had the highest recorded incidence of heart attack in middle-aged men in the world, also has a high calcium to magnesium ratio in the diet at 4 parts calcium to 1 part magnesium.16-17 Americans in general have a high calcium to magnesium ratio in their diet and consequently in their bodies; the U.S. ratio is 3.5-to-1. Our dietary emphasis on a high calcium intake without sufficient magnesium and because of the excessive emphasis on women taking high doses of calcium for osteoporosis, we are creating more imbalance between the two minerals.

Some researchers predict that the American ratio of calcium to magnesium is actually approaching 6-to-1, yet, the recommended dietary ratio of calcium to magnesium in the U.S. is two to one. Current research on the paleolithic or caveman diet shows that the ratio of calcium to magnesium in the diet that our bodies evolved to eat—is 1-to-1.18 In order to offset the deficiency magnesium induced by excess calcium and to treat the above 22 conditions, people may find it necessary to ingest one part magnesium to one part calcium in supplement form for a period of months to a year. Stabilization on a healthy diet including green drinks my by possible after that time.

The most commons sources of magnesium are oxide, citrate, glycinate, and malate. People use oxide and citrate if they suffer from constipation to take advantage of magnesium’s laxative effect. Glycinate seems to cause little diarrhea and is the best choice for people who already have loose stool. Magnesium malate has been promoted for people with fibromyalgia to help break up lactic acid that seems to be part of the fibromyalgia picture.

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About The Author
Proficient in both conventional and alternative medicine Dr. Dean offers Consultations for Health by Phone. If you require individualization of the advice offered in this article, you can contact Dr. Dean at www.carolyndean.com or by email at drdean@carolyndean.com. At www.carolyndean.com, under......more
 
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