Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for August 18, 2006


I came across this article last week. Another mention of Mitral Valve Prolapse and the link to Magnesium:

Magnesium: The Essential Mineral Critical For Youth And Health

Magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body. Its major role is at and in the cells so that blood levels, whole blood, serum, plasma, and even white blood cell levels of magnesium do not give an accurate picture of optimal magnesium levels. In fact, serum levels of magnesium are low only in acute alcoholics and in severe starvation. Magnesium stored in bones is stolen by the body to maintain the narrow range of serum levels required for life.

Eighty percent of American women and seventy percent of men do not eat even the recommended daily requirement of magnesium. And soil throughout the world is deficient in magnesium except in Egypt. Thus, most foods today, even those supposed to have a high content of magnesium, are low themselves. As a single essential nutrient, magnesium may be responsible for more diseases than any other nutrient! There are many reasons for this widespread deficiency: nutrition, stress and drugs. White flour has had removed 85% of its magnesium. Considering the fact that almost 20% of calories come from white flour, essentially a junk food, this inadequate food is responsible for about 17% “loss” of magnesium. Chemical fertilizers, high in nitrates, phosphates, and potassium, deplete soil magnesium so that even most whole wheat is basically borderline.

Farmers are well aware of the major impact of magnesium depletion; horses and catfle may die from “grass staggers,” an uncoordinated gait, severe muscle spasms and even seizures. All this is curable by magnesium supplementation, if caught early enough.

The second junk food which has no magnesium, and indeed no real nutritional value, is white sugar. The average American consumes 42 teaspoons of sugar per day, 210 calories, or about 10% of caloric intake.

Add 15%, minimum, for protein and 35%for fat, both lacking in magnesium, and it is obvious that at least 77% of our food has no magnesium. Furthermore, both fat and protein interfere with absorption of magnesium.

And then there is that enigma of modern life, “pop,” which is phosphate of soda, a major stumbling block in magnesium metabolism. At an average of 24 to 36 oz. per day, the ultimate junk non-food, pop, is one of the unsung, unrecognized villains in disease promotion.

Other major magnesium detractors include the 550,000 different chemical pollutants released every year into our air, soil and water. Pesticides, herbicides, and ammonia, widely used in agriculture, seriously stress the body, affecting every aspect of metabolism. One of the major pollutants is aluminum, which blocks many normal magnesium functions. Aluminum, the non-essential and highly toxic mineral, is used to wrap foods and to store pop, beer and even juice. The acid pH of many juices and of pop leaches aluminum out of the containers. And to compound matters, antiperspirants and most baking powder contains aluminum. Any of the toxic metals, aluminum, cadmium, lead, arsenic, and mercury may block magnesium metabolism.

In addition, the clinical stressors mentioned above contribute to the overall stress reaction – an increase in “adrenalin,” cortisone, blood sugar, and insulin. And both adrenalin and cortisone lead to increased excretion of magnesium in the urine. Noise and electromagnetic pollution also elicit this biochemical stress reaction leading to magnesium dumping. And then there is the Future Shock of modern life. All emotional/mental stress further aggravates the adrenalin, cortisone induced magnesium depletion.

And to compound the remarkable attack upon magnesium, there is a huge arsenal of prescription drugs that deplete magnesium. These include most diuretics, hydrochlorothiazide, chlorthalidone, furosemide, bumetanide; antibiotics – gentamicin, carbenicillin, amphotericin B; cortisone/steroid drugs such as prednisone and dexamethasone; digitalis/digoxin; antiasthmatics including ephedrine and pseudophedrine; laxatives; chemo therapeutics – cisplatin, vinblastine, bleomycin, cyclosporine, methotrexate, etc. And, of course, those non-prescriptions – nicotine and alcohol. It’s a near miracle that we survive in modern society!

Stress begets stress. The lower your magnesium level, the lower your threshold for new stress – thus, you become increasingly more sensitive – more adrenalin, greater magnesium loss, greater sensitivity, etc. Soon the intracellular magnesium level is no longer 10 times that of serum and the cells are in a chronic state of hyperexcitability. Anxiety, irritability, anger, depression and mood swings are just the tip of the iceberg of magnesium deficient symptoms:

Anxiety
Attention Deficit
Confusion
Depression
Diarrhea or Constipation
Faintness
Fatigue
Hyperventilation
Incoordination
Insomnia
Intestinal Problems
Muscle Cramps
Muscle Tightness
Muscle Twitches
Pain
Poor Memory
Seizures
Tinnitus
Vertigo�

Major diseases associated with magnesium deficiency are:

Angina Pectoris
Anorexia
Arrhythmias
Asthma
Atherosclerosis
Attention Deficit Disorder
Auricular Fibrillation
Bulimia
Cancer
Cardiomyopathy
Chronic Fatigue
Chronic Bronchitis
Congestive Heart Failure
Cirrhosis
Depression
Diabetes
Eclampsia
Emphysema
Fibromyalgia
Gall Bladder Infections and Stones
Hearing Loss
Heart Attack
Hyperactivity
Hypercholesterolemia
Hypertension
Hypoglycemia
Immune Deficiency
Infections (Viral and Bacterial)
Intermittent Claudication
Kidney Stones
Migraine
Mitral Valve Prolapse
Osteoporosis
Panic Attacks
PMS – Pre menstrual syndrome
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy
PVC’s
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy
Strokes

In perhaps no illness is magnesium deficiency more relevant than myocardial infarction or acute heart attack. On average, patients given intravenous magnesium have a 50% greater survival rate than those who do not receive magnesium. No drug is more effective than magnesium in reducing mortality from a heart attack. No drug is as safe. Indeed, I consider failure to give magnesium to such a patient significant negligence.

Another major disease in which magnesium deficiency is rampant is diabetes. Just glucosuria, the spilling of sugar in urine, depletes magnesium. Indeed there is an inverse relationship between glycosuria and serum magnesium. In severe diabetic crisis with ketoacidosis, extreme magnesium loss is common.

More critically, magnesium is an important co-factor in production of insulin by the pancreas. Normal total body magnesium is essential for glucose metabolism. Thus, the rampant magnesium deficiency in our society may be a contributing cause of diabetes.

Insulin resistance, muscle spasms, atherosclerosis, cardiac arrhythmias, and even the increase in vascular disease in diabetes may be related to magnesium deficiency.

Another heart-rending illness, cerebral palsy, may be the result of magnesium deficiency. Mothers given intravenous magnesium just before giving birth are much less likely to have children who develop cerebral palsy.

Diagnosis Of Magnesium Deficiency

Serum or blood levels of magnesium are a waste of blood, money and time except in acute alcoholism, starvation or diabetic acidosis. There are only two tests worthwhile: magnesium loading and intracellular spectroscopy.

Magnesium Loading

Although this test is considered the standard by the few physicians who at least recognize the possibility of magnesium deficiency, the test is somewhat tedious and frustrating to patients. First one has to collect every drop of urine for exactly 24 hours. The urine is then analyzed for total magnesium and creatinine output. Then the patient is given intravenously a specific “load” of magnesium and a second 24 hour urine is collected and tested for magnesium and creatinine. If less than 50%of the administered magnesium is excreted, this is “proof’ of magnesium deficiency. In fact, if less than 20% is excreted, “borderline” magnesium deficiency is suspected.

Intracellular Spectroscopy

Much simpler and the test I prefer is a simple tongue blade scraping of the frenulum of the tongue.

Then the cells are placed on a slide and sent for x-ray defraction. At about the same cost as the magnesium load test and much better patient compliance, this test also gives intracellular levels of magnesium, calcium, potassium, sodium, chloride, and phosphorus, as well as equally important ratios. If your physician won’t order this important test for you, find another physician. If you have any of the symptoms or illnesses listed earlier, it is extremely wise to have this test done.

Magnesium Replacement

Except in patients with kidney failure, some magnesium supplementation is advisable. The problem with oral magnesium is that all magnesium compounds are potentially laxative. And there is good evidence that magnesium absorption depends upon the mineral remaining in the intestine at least 12 hours. If intestinal transit time is less than 12 hours, magnesium absorption is impaired. There are two oral forms that may be considered: 25%magnesium chloride drops (Magic Drops) or magnesium taurate. The drops are extremely strong tasting, salty and bitter. At least 50% of patients refuse to use the drops after a taste test! Twenty drops per day are recommended. It requires 3 to 6 months for replacement to be accomplished.

Magnesium taurate at dosages of 250 to 500 mg., if well tolerated (no diarrhea) by the intestines, is better absorbed than any other oral tablet or capsule. This approach requires 6 to 12 months.

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August 18, 2006 - Posted by | Health | , , , ,

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