You Guessed It ...
We need it. Here's why.
Without it, the power plants in our cells, the mitochondria, could not move the ATP they make as a store of energy, out from inside the tiny organelles in our cells and off to where it is needed.
But before I get into more specifics, let me quote from a review called:
Magnesium: Biochemistry, Nutrition, Detection and Social Impact of Diseases Linked to Its Deficiency.
Whew! What a title.
Magnesium plays an important role in many physiological functions. Habitually low intakes of magnesium and in general the deficiency of this micronutrient induce changes in biochemical pathways that can increase the risk of illness and in particular, chronic degenerative diseases.
Despite the well-recognized importance of magnesium, Mg availability is not generally determined and monitored in patients, therefore, magnesium has been called the “forgotten mineral”. Chronic magnesium deficiency, can result in disturbances in nearly every organ/body, contributing to or exacerbating pathological consequences and causing potentially fatal complications.
Signs of magnesium deficiency include:
- loss of appetite
- muscle contractions and cramps
- personality changes
- coronary spasms
- abnormal heart rhythms
A survey on the social impact of the principal diseases linked to magnesium deficiency is reported, focusing in particular on diabetes, osteoporosis, cardiovascular and neurological diseases and cancer.
Magnesium is involved in practically every major metabolic and biochemical process within our cells and is responsible for numerous functions in the body, including
- bone development
- neuromuscular function
- signaling pathways
- energy storage and transfer
- glucose, lipid and protein metabolism
- DNA and RNA stability
- cell proliferation
Here's a link to a Google docs site with 3 papers on magnesium
3 of the articles are very heavy going but are still worth scanning to get the 'flavour' of the research. The 4th (Mg - key to Ca absorption) is more palatable.
So. How much do I need and in what form should I take it?
The 1st question is that we need as much magnesium as calcium as a 1:1 ratio is widely recommended. The challenge here is that how much we absorb from tablets (less than 25% or around 50mg in the Mg salts) or foods (better than 80% in appropriate foods) can vary.
Also, the ratio of most Australians for their calcium to magnesium intake is closer to 20:1 than 1:1 and so much calcium actually reduces the amount of magnesium we can absorb while also increasing the excretion of magnesium.
Our Karuah Active Magnesium™ is at the top of the quality list and due to the seeds we use being cold pressed to remove some of their oils and the meal is very finely milled before being enhanced with activated mushrooms loaded with vitamin D made from sunshine and UV light.
Naturally, we add selected wild foods to boost the functionality that it delivers. So you get Mg along with good serves of Mn, Se, Zn, Cu and Fe. It's an active mineral soup in a scoop with all the trimmings relevant to the processes in which Mg is critical for our ideal health.
In contrast, magnesium supplements are often bulked out with magnesium oxide which is very poorly absorbed. Mg citrate is another common Mg salt but note that it is used as a laxative to clean out the gut before gastric endoscope procedures or surgery.
Here are some other comparisons:
Incidentally, have do you take supermarket magnesium tablets and still get cramps at night? This is a sign of Mg deficiency and is a measure of the inadequacy of supermarket supplements.
And have you ever wondered why the path labs do CAC scores for calcium but nothing similar for Mg?
The reason is that most of the magnesium in the body is in the structural matrix of our bones and teeth not circulating in our bloodstream. When Mg is needed elsewhere in the body, there are systems of getting it back into the blood temporarily so that it can go where it is needed.
Once we replenish the supply from Mg we get every day from whole foods, everything balances out again. Unlike calcium, magnesium does not get deposited in our soft tissues causing a host of health problems, most of them ultimately lethal.
Did you see the news report that Tom Sizemore (Saving Private Ryan, Blackhawk Down and a bunch of other tough-guy movies) died from a stroke followed by a brain aneurism at age 61. A calcium:magnesium balance of 1:1 along with Karuah ChancaPlus™, Karuah Active Magnesium™ and the other products in the Holy Grail to Health can get us back on the Green line to perpetual youth (or at least reduce the risks of an early death).