Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for August 22, 2006

In the book I’m reading “The Miracle of Magnesium” on page 34 she talks about certain foods that contain oxalic acid or phytic acid as they can reduce the absorption of magnesium. Here’s what I find:

Oxalic acid occurs naturally in quite a large number of plants. The human body also synthesizes oxalic acid from ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). Oxalic acid may combine with calcium, iron, sodium, magnesium, or potassium to form less soluble salts known as oxalates. Oxalates also occur naturally in plants.

Since oxalic acid binds with important nutrients, making them inaccessible to the body, regular consumption of large amounts of foods high in oxalic acid over a period of weeks to months may result in nutrient deficiencies, most notably of calcium.

Oxalic acid is a strong acid, and is irritating to tissue all by itself. Extremely high doses are fatal. Oxalates, on the other hand, form tiny little insoluble crystals with sharp edges, which are also irritating to tissue. So, high levels of oxalic acid/oxalates in the diet lead to irritation of the digestive system, and particularly of the stomach and kidneys. They may also contribute to the formation of kidney stones (the most common form of kidney stone is composed of calcium oxalate).

Foods containing these chemicals may be consumed in moderation. However, if you suffer from kidney disease, kidney stones, rheumatoid arthritis, or gout, it is usually recommended that you avoid foods that are high in oxalates or oxalic acid.

Foods generally found on the list include: chocolate, cocoa, coffee, most berries (especially strawberries and cranberries), most nuts (especially peanuts), beans, beets, bell peppers, black pepper, parsley, rhubarb, spinach, swiss chard, summer squash, sweet potatoes, and tea.

Plant foods with high concentrations of oxalic acid (over 200 ppm) include (but are not limited to): lamb’s-quarter, buckwheat, star fruit, black pepper, purslane, poppy seeds, rhubarb, tea, spinach, plantains, cocoa and chocolate, ginger, almonds, cashews, garden sorrel, mustard greens, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, soybeans, tomatillos, beets and beet greens, oats, pumpkin, cabbage, green beans, mango, eggplant, tomatoes, lentils, and parsnips.

And some more research:

Low Oxalate Diet University of Pittsburgh

Kidney stones are caused by a buildup of minerals in the urine. Calcium, oxalate (OXuh-layt), and uric acid may lead to kidney stones in some people. A low-oxalate diet is for people who have calcium oxalate kidney stones. Cutting back on high-oxalate foods
and salt (sodium) and drinking plenty of water may help prevent kidney stones from forming. Here are some important points to remember:

• Oxalates are found in a wide variety of foods.
• Foods that come from animals usually have little or no oxalate.
• Drink plenty of fluids. Drink more than 8 cups of fluid every day. Your urine should be as clear as water. If it isn’t, drink more fluids.
• To help prevent oxalate stones from forming, limit oxalates to 40 to 50 mg per day.

• Low-oxalate foods have less than 2 mg of oxalate per serving. You can eat as much of
these foods as you like.
• Moderate-oxalate foods have 2 to 6 mg of oxalate per serving. You should eat no
more than three of these foods per day.
• High-oxalate foods have more than 7 mg of oxalate per serving. Avoid these foods.


Low Oxalate
– apple juice
– beer, bottled or canned
– cider
– distilled alcohol
– ginger ale
– grapefruit juice
– lemon juice
– lemonade/limeade (made without peel)
– lime juice
– milk (skim, 2%, whole)
– orange soda
– pineapple
– root beer
– tea, instant
– water
– wine

Moderate Oxalate
– coffee (limit to 8 oz/day)
– cola (limit to 12 oz/day)
– cranberry juice
– grape juice
– orange juice
– orangeade
High Oxalate
– any juice made from highoxalate
– beer, draft
– chocolate, plain*
– chocolate milk
– cocoa*
– coffee powder (instant)*
– Ovaltine
– tea, brewed*
* This food is extremely high in oxalates, 7 to 700 mg per serving.


Low Oxalate
– milk (skim, 2%, whole)
– buttermilk
– yogurt with allowed fruit
– cheese

For calcium restrictions, limit above to one serving per day.

Moderate Oxalate
– none

High Oxalate
– chocolate milk


Low Oxalate
– beef, lamb, pork
– eggs
– fish/shellfish
– poultry

Moderate Oxalate
– beef kidney
– liver

High Oxalate
– none

Meat Substitutes, Beans, Nuts, and Seeds

Low Oxalate
– eggs
– lentils
– water chestnuts

Moderate Oxalate
– garbanzo beans, canned
– lima beans
– split peas, cooked

High Oxalate
– almonds
– baked beans canned in tomato sauce
– cashews
– green beans, waxed and dried
– peanut butter*
– peanuts*
– pecans*
– sesame seeds
– sunflower seeds
– tofu (soybean curd)*
– walnuts

Fats and Oils:

Low Oxalate
– all

Moderate Oxalate
– none

High Oxalate
– none
* This food is extremely high in oxalates, 7 to 700 mg per serving.


Low Oxalate
– apples, peeled
– avocado
– bananas
– cantaloupe
– casaba
– cherries, bing
– coconut
– cranberries, canned
– grapes, green
– honeydew
– mangoes
– nectarines
– papaya
– raisins
– watermelon

Moderate Oxalate
– apples with skin
– apricots
– black currants
– cranberries, dried
– grapefruit
– oranges
– peaches
– pears
– pineapple
– plums
– prunes

High Oxalate
– blackberries
– black raspberries*
– blueberries
– red currants
– dewberries
– figs, dried
– grapes, purple
– gooseberries
– kiwi
– lemon peel*
– lime peel*
– orange peel
– red raspberries
– rhubarb*
– strawberries
– tangerines
– any juice made from above

Breads and Starches:

Low Oxalate
– bread
– breakfast cereals
– noodles, egg or macaroni
– rice, white or wild

Moderate Oxalate
– barley, cooked
– corn bread
– corn tortilla
– cornmeal
– cornstarch
– flour, white or wheat
– oatmeal
– rice, brown
– unsalted saltine or soda crackers
– spaghetti in tomato sauce
– sponge cake

High Oxalate
– Fig Newtons
– fruit cake
– graham crackers
– grits, white corn
– kamut
– marmalade
– soybean crackers*
– wheat germ*


Low Oxalate
– acorn squash
– alfalfa sprouts
– cabbage
– cauliflower
– peas, frozen and fresh
– peppers, red
– radishes
– turnips, roots
– zucchini
– squash

Moderate Oxalate
– asparagus
– artichokes
– brussels sprouts
– broccoli
– carrots
– corn
– cucumbers, peeled
– kohlrabi
– lettuce
– lima beans
– mushrooms
– onions
– potatoes, white
– peas, canned
– snow peas
– tomato, fresh
– tomato sauce

High Oxalate
– beans (green, wax, dried)
– beets (tops, roots, greens)
– celery
– chives
– collards
– dandelion
– eggplant
– escarole
– kale
– leeks*
– mustard greens
– okra*
– parsley
– parsnips
– peppers, green
– pokeweed*
– rutabagas
– sorrel
– spinach*
– summer squash
– sweet potatoes*
– Swiss chard*
– tomato soup
– vegetable soup

* This food is extremely high in oxalates, 7 to 700 mg per serving.


Low Oxalate
– any not listed

Moderate Oxalate
– basil, fresh
– malt, powder
– pepper

High Oxalate
– cinnamon, ground
– parsley, raw*
– pepper, more than 1 tsp/day*
– ginger
– soy sauce

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for August 22, 2006

Magnificent Magnesium

Can you name a fruit that contains between 25 and 49% of the recommended dietary allowance for magnesium (400 milligrams/day)?

The answer is dried figs.

Other fruits and vegetables that are high in magnesium include: Acorn squash, dates, artichokes, raisins, avocado (2 tablespoons mashed (28g)), spinach, butternut squash, and watermelon.

Other magnesium-rich foods include: dairy products, meat, seafood, bananas, black eyed peas, blueberries, chickpeas, kidney beans, lentils, navy beans, pinto beans, potatoes, rice, sesame seeds, spinach, split peas, zucchini.

Good sources of magnesium

Nuts and seeds per 1 ounce

Pumpkin seeds 152mg
Sunflower kernels 100mg
Almonds 78mg
Cashews 73mg
Peanuts 50mg
Walnuts 45mg

Wheat bran cereals per 1 ounce

100% Bran 134mg
All Bran 106mg
Wheat germ 90mg
Raisin Bran 48mg

Legumes per 1/2 cup

Tofu 94mg
Baked beans 72mg
Chickpeas, cooked, canned 52mg
Lentils, cooked 43mg

Fruits and Vegetables

Spinach, 1/2 cup cooked 79mg
Potato, med. w/skin 56mg
Spinach, 1 cup raw 50mg
Avocado 1/2 Hass 35mg
Banana, med. 34mg

Seafood per 3 ounces

Shrimp, cooked, peeled 43mg
Salmon 31mg

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | | Leave a comment

Entry for August 22, 2006

I had a slight vibration when I went to bed last night and it was the same when I woke up this morning. It will be interesting to see what happens night and tomorrow because I’ve made the switch to the magnesium citrate.

I’ve been thinking about my wife’s comment from yesterday and she’s right. I’m not a doctor. But it’s made me more determinded to find out how I can become one or maybe something in alternative medicine.

I mention this career change to her and we discuss a bunch of options. One of her ideas is to open a vitamin store. This is a great idea. I’ve always wanted to be self employed but never really knew what I wanted or how to go about it. We could run it together and have vitamin/mineral supplements and maybe try expanding to selling cloth diapers and organic vegetables…

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for August 22, 2006



Having a child is a life changing event. It has changed my perspective and changed my way of thinking. It’s made me realize how sick I’ve become. I look at her every day and question how my body should feel. She’s only nine months old now and she’s so strong, so healthy and has so much energy. It’s amazing to watch.

She probably saved my life.

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | | Leave a comment

Entry for August 21, 2006


I’ve been wanting to talk to my Aunt for a while now because she has mitral valve prolapse. She probably has a magnesium deficiency as well so I’ll call her up and see if she has any other symptoms. I know she had surgery recently on her feet. I’m not quite sure what the problem was but I do that that the problem has reoccurred recently. She’s recently retired and as a hairdresser, spent most of her life standing on her feet.

I call her up and I ask her about her foot. She has a bunion on the side of her right foot and it’s quite painful. The surgery didn’t help and it’s come back the same as before. It’s a bone related issue so I mention a magnesium deficiency and tell her about my discovery that mitral valve prolapse is one of the symptoms of an calcium/magnesium imbalance.  So I ask her if she is taking any calcium supplements. She’s taking two 500 mg of Calcium with vitamin D and has been for years at the recommendation of her doctor. So I ask her to check the supplement for the ingredients to find out if there is any magnesium. She comes back on the phone and there is only calcium and vitamin D with NO MAGNESIUM. She said the doctor never even mentioned magnesium. She’s also had three cortizone needles from her doctor that have made no difference whatsoever.

I told her about my symptoms and amazingly, she has a lot of symptoms that match mine. Muscle cramps, muscle twitches, photophobia, back ache, weak knee muscles, easily startled and cold hands and feet. She also has plantar fasciitis. She said she did try taking magnesium a while back when she heard that it could have an effect on her muscle cramps but it had no effect.

I suspect it had no effect because of her high intake of calcium and if she was using magnesium oxide, it only has seven percent body absorption. I told her to stop using the calcium altogether and to purchase magnesium citrate. She agreed and will give it a try.

I start googling and found this on a medical web site:

The only permanent solution for bunions is surgery. However, with all the advances in podiatry, bunion surgery is much more effective and less time consuming and painful than it once was.

After our phone conversation, I google away about bunions:

Symptoms: Bunion

A bunion is a bony outgrowth on the inside of the foot at the base of the big toe. Bunions usually occur on both feet simultaneously. The protrusions can be quite pronounced, making properly fitting, comfortable shoes nearly impossible to find. If inflamed, bunions cause *bursitis, which is painful and makes walking difficult. Osteoarthritis is more likely to develop from such deformations. Calluses usually occur from the bunion rubbing against the shoe.


Bunions are the direct result of wearing improper footwear. Shoes that are too narrow and fit too tightly squeeze the toes together, forcing the big toe into an awkward position. Over time, the base of the big toe starts to move outward. Children, whose feet are still growing, are most susceptible. Many women suffer from bunions, largely due to the fashions of high heels and pointed shoes, in which the weight rests on the balls of the toes. Flat *feet and other foot problems increase the likelihood of bunions


Eat citrus fruits, kiwis and red currants, which are rich in the antioxidant vitamin C, to reduce inflammation. Make sure to include the white layer under the peel, as it contains bioflavonoids which enhance the healing action of vitamin C. The essential fatty acids, linoleic and linolenic acid, contained in unrefined, cold-pressed nut and seed oils such as flax seed oil or pumpkin seed oil will also help inhibit inflammation. The body uses these oils to manufacture anti-inflammatory prostaglandins

Nutritional Supplements

Bromelain taken between meals will help break down bunions.

A calcium/magnesium imbalance can cause bunions. Increasing magnesium to 1,000 to 1,500 mg per day and decreasing calcium can aid bunion healing.

Daily Dosages:

Bromelain, 500 mg three times daily between meals
Magnesium, 1,000-1,500 mg daily with meals

Wow! I was right. She was taking too much calcium without the balance of magnesium. Another interesting fact? They suggest taking flax seed oil to reduce the inflamation. Let’s find out what flax seed oil contains:

Flaxseeds’ omega-3 fats are far from all this exceptional food has to offer. Flaxseed meal and flour provides a very good source of fiber that can lower cholesterol levels in people with atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease, reduce the exposure of colon cells to cancer-causing chemicals, relieve the constipation or diarrhea of irritable bowel syndrome sufferers, and help stabilize blood sugar levels in diabetic patients. Flaxseeds are also a good source of magnesium, which helps to reduce the severity of asthma by keeping airways relaxed and open, lowers high blood pressure and reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke in people with atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease, prevents the blood vessel spasm that leads to migraine attacks, and generally promotes relaxation and restores normal sleep patterns.

And there’s the word of the day…Flaxseeds are a good source of…Magnesium!

I spoke to my aunt for one hour and I either sounded like a raving lunatic or a mad scientist. I’m not sure which one I prefer but I could tell my wife was slightly annoyed with me. She told me that I wasn’t a doctor and she’s absolutely right. I’m not a doctor…so what does it take to become one?

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , | 1 Comment

Entry for August 21, 2006

I thought I would try another experiment with my diet. I’ve read in Carolyn Dean’s book about magnesium that eating foods high in protein and fats can affect the mineral absorption rate. So today, I’ve cut out the protein from my lunch and I’ll try eating my oats in the morning and only fruits during the day. I’ll cut out the protein as much as possible.

By the end of the day my eyes have improved tremendously. But now I’m beginning to feel the weird kind of feeling in my head when I don’t take the B vitamins. I get home from work and for the next few hours, I have a bunch of weird feelings in my chest and I’m not feeling that great. I decide that taking one B complex capsule would be okay for me to take since I haven’t had any all day. I also take two more capsules of magnesium and within and hour, I’m feeling much better.

Maybe I should switch back to the magnesium citrate so I go out to the local health food store and pick some up. I also inquire about the homeopathic remedies behind the counter and I ask about magnesia phosphorica 30c. They are the same type as the ones in Loblaws and they don’t have it. I ask about placing a special order and she says it will take a about a week. I want to try to get back to my usual routine of vitamins. That energy I had last week was great. I want that again.

August 22, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment


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