Testing For and Fixing Magnesium Deficiency- Carolyn Dean MD ND
Magnesium plays many important roles in the structure and the function of the human body. The adult human body contains about 25 grams of magnesium. Over 60% of all the magnesium in the body is found in the skeleton, about 27% is found in muscle, 6% to 7% is found in other cells, and less than 1% is found outside of cells.
WOW – why does the body require so much darned magnesium? Well, it turns out that magnesium is not only producing necessary enzymes and working in the mitochondria to make ATP but magnesium is also necessary for protein synthesis at the ribosomal level. The ribosomes are the cellular organelles where proteins are synthesized. Magnesium “activates” the amino acids involved and allows the mRNA to attach to the ribosomes. Magnesium is also found in the nucleus of the cell and is essential for the stability of the nucleic acids RNA and DNA. If DNA and RNA structure do not remain stable you may have mutations in the codes and produce incorrect peptides are none at all during protein synthesis. Energy for the production of proteins must come from ATP as well. Without magnesium available in many areas of the cell, protein synthesis cannot occur.
Okay- so magnesium is super critical! BUT – how do you know if you have enough magnesium in your body to perform all the essential functions for human health? One way to be certain your levels of magnesium are well within the normal range is to get a magnesium RBC red blood cell (RBC) essential mineral test. Another option is to enroll in our GrassrootsHealth nutritional supplement research project and you’ll get your magnesium testing as well as vitamin D, Essential Fatty Acids and TSH/Thyroid levels all through one at-home bloodspot testing kit.
Another way to determine if you have enough magnesium in your system is to pay attention to your body’s performance and symptoms as Dr. Carolyn Dean recommends. By learning how to ‘read the signs’ you can ensure magnesium balance and good health. Clinical symptoms of magnesium deficiency are physical signs that are clearly related to both its physiological role and its significant impact on the healthy balance of minerals such as calcium and potassium. Tics, muscle spasms and cramps, seizures, anxiety, and irregular heart rhythms are among the classic signs and symptoms of low magnesium. Latent symptoms are symptoms are present but concealed by an inability to distinguish their signs from other disease states. Caused by low magnesium intake prevalent in nearly all industrialized nations, they can include migraine headaches, insomnia, depression, and chronic fatigue, among others.
You can also determine if you are at risk for magnesium deficiency through your lifestyle. For example, did you know that most dark colored sodas contain phosphates? These substances actually bind with magnesium inside the digestive tract, rendering it unavailable to the body. So even if you are eating a balanced diet, by drinking soda with your meals you are flushing magnesium out of your system. Fluorides in toothpaste and drugs can also bind magnesium and render it unavailable as well depleting your storage sites and creating deficiency symptoms. Foods, caffeine, sugar, stress, and prescription meds are all within our power to control and manage so that magnesium storage sites do not become depleted.
Finally, aging is another factor in magnesium depletion. Older adults are particularly vulnerable to low magnesium status. It has been shown that aging, stress and disease all contribute to increasing magnesium needs, yet most older adults actually take in less magnesium from food sources than when they were younger.
In addition, magnesium metabolism may be less efficient as we grow older, as changes the GI tract and kidneys contribute to older adults absorbing less and retaining less magnesium. If you are above 55 and also showing lifestyle signs or symptoms related to low magnesium, it’s particularly important that you work to improve your magnesium intake.
About Dr. Carolyn Dean
Dr. Carolyn Dean MD ND has been featured on national media for over 30 years offering practical strategies to improve health, vitality, and well-being the natural way. As a medical doctor, naturopath, certified clinical nutritionist and master of many modalities including acupuncture and homeopathy, Dr. Carolyn Dean MD ND has authored over 33 books and 100 publications including The Magnesium Miracle, 3rd Edition, Hormone Balance, Future Health Now Encyclopedia and Heart Health. Please note that the information and opinions expressed on these broadcasts are not designed to constitute advice or recommendations as to any disease, ailment, or physical condition. You should not act or rely upon any information contained in these broadcasts without seeking the advice of your personal physician. If you have any questions about the information or opinions expressed during these broadcasts, please contact your doctor.
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