This is an article that was sent to me by one of my own instructors. I am passing this information along to ‘You’. We can never learn enough on the care and feeding of body and mind!
Whole Living Wellness Center
Articles about magnesium deficiency are everywhere and more of us are becoming aware that it is a real possibility for us. I have read articles that as many as 90% of us may be magnesium deficient. No wonder there are increasing numbers of women who are subject to hormonal disruption, since magnesium and hormones are so linked.
Why is this such a big deal?
Magnesium is responsible for about 300 functions in the human body, including blood pressure, metabolism, immune function and hormones.
Why is it so widespread?
Chemicals such as fluoride and chlorine in the water supply decrease magnesium availability. This means that the plants that grow there have less magnesium, as do the animals that eat the plants – so whether you are a plant or meat eater your dietary intake has been reduced.
At the same time as we are not getting enough magnesium, we are getting too much calcium. Too much calcium in the body can lead to calcification. Every cell in the body needs sodium and potassium, and magnesium regulates the balance, both inside and outside the cells. When the magnesium levels are inadequate too much calcium is allowed into the cells. This is a simplification because there are many other nutrients involved, including vitamins k and d.
Is your diet depleting magnesium levels?
These are the biggest problems that create a general lack of magnesium:
A diet high in saturated fats reduces magnesium absorption in the intestines
High sugar intake increases magnesium excretion by the kidneys
Phosphates in carbonated drinks bind magnesium so it becomes unusable by the body
What about stress?
During times of stress, our cells get rid of magnesium – we actively push it out of our body to boost our nervous system.
Does everyone need magnesium?
No. If you live a meditative, contemplative life, by the ocean or on a mountainside and never interact with the rest of the world, you’re probably okay.
But if you work, commute, worry, drink caffeine, eat fast foods – i.e. you have a revved up system to get yourself through each day, then you’re probably in need of magnesium supplements.
What are the symptoms of deficiency?
Muscle cramps and spasms
Anxiety and depression
High blood pressure
Low magnesium levels can result in higher levels of estrogen and progesterone. I work with women’s reproductive health and I am dealing with hormonal challenges on a daily basis. These present as such issues as PCOS, endometriosis, fibroids; in other words, estrogen-dominant problems. In our later years, hot flushes can be reduced by magnesium supplementation.
During pregnancy, when the body’s hormonal balance shifts, low magnesium levels can affect our health and mood. Many pregnancy complaints can be helped with increasing magnesium, such as leg cramps and sickness.
What’s the solution?
There are some good magnesium supplements to be taken internally, but these can cause digestive problems and even stress on the kidneys. Often absorption in the digestive system is not efficient and we can end up excreting more than 50% of the supplement.
Topical magnesium sprayed onto the skin bypasses the digestive system and the kidneys and is quickly absorbed into the blood stream and tissues.
There are some magnesium-rich food sources – organic of course!