This mineral also supports detox and cleansing big time.
An essential mineral involved in over 350 of the body’s critical functions, magnesium doesn’t get the attention it deserves. For starters, it helps coordinate the activity of the heart muscles and nerves that initiate heartbeat.
Magnesium appears to reduce high blood pressure, cutting the risk of heart attack and stroke. Because this mineral also lessens the risk of heart arrhythmia, it limits the complications of congestive heart failure.
Unfortunately, new research finds that women are getting less than 70% of the magnesium they need. Magnesium deficiency has been linked to insulin resistance, which can lead to Type 2 diabetes.
In addition, low levels of this mineral are a risk factor for osteoporosis, a common problem that accounts for 2 million fractures each year in this country for a cost of over $17 billion. Magnesium is needed to convert vitamin D to its active form so that calcium can be absorbed by the bones.
Dr. Ann Louise’s Take:
I am really concerned that the Journal of the American College of Nutrition finds women so low in magnesium.
With the food industry pumping supplemental calcium into every possible food and beverage, many of us surely have excess calcium—way out of balance with magnesium and other important minerals. In a calcium-magnesium imbalance, calcium doesn’t get deposited in the bones as it should.
Instead, unused calcium gets dumped in the arteries, helping to “harden” them and leading to atherosclerosis. To combat this, many heart doctors prescribe calcium-channel blockers (like Procardia) to keep calcium from being absorbed in the heart muscle.
It makes much more sense to offer magnesium, a natural calcium channel blocker that dilates arteries—at least when it’s available in sufficient amounts and in balance with calcium.
Magnesium also helps prevent formation of those painful kidney stones (calcium oxalate crystals). It even helps the liver do its all-important job of detoxification by acting as an escort to toxins—including estrogens—as they leave the body.
As Fat Flushers have discovered, magnesium is helpful with constipation as well as those occasional headaches that can come with caffeine withdrawal. That’s one reason both Classic Fat Flush and Fat Flush for Life feature sea vegetables (like kelp and dulse) and nuts (like almonds and cashews), rich in this important mineral.
How Much Magnesium?
Nutrient depletion of soils and over-processing of foods robs today’s diet of much of its magnesium content. If you’re feeling edgy, have muscle cramps, suffer insomnia, crave chocolate, or notice increased urination, adjust your calcium-magnesium ratio, so that you’re taking at least as much magnesium or—ideally—twice as much magnesium as calcium.
I recommend 1 to 3 capsules of Magnesium 400 mg throughout the day, preferably more at bedtime—and not with calcium. Once you feel a better calcium-magnesium ratio has been achieved (or if you experience diarrhea), reduce your magnesium intake. (Note: anyone with kidney disease should not take magnesium supplements.)
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