Magnesium, It’s Not Just a Shiny Rock

Calcium Absorption, and Bone Health

 

Magnesium

Magnesium (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dietary magnesium is the 4th most abundant mineral in the human body, and is critical for maintaining muscular strength, absorption of calcium into bone mass, normal heart function, and relieving nervous system irritation. Studies have shown that seniors with higher magnesium levels have greater muscular strength. For bone mass, magnesium is an absolute necessity.

 

The human body does not store much magnesium; therefore calcium is absorbed into bone mass that has been properly stimulated only when magnesium is present via dietary function. Magnesium is found in nuts, seeds, and many darker green vegetables. Spinach is one of the best sources of magnesium, and is easy to add to a salad. When choosing a snack during the day, the choice of nuts specifically almonds or cashews is far favored over day snack that is sugar-based. This means that for optimal bone health, with an effort to both avoid and reverse osteoporosis, individuals should first stimulate osteoblastic (bone cell) function with heavy mechanical loading, then continue to add natural sources of both magnesium and calcium for absorption.

 

There are a number of conditions that can occur with magnesium deficiencies the following are just a few:

  • Asthma
  • Bowel complications
  • Depression/Stress
  • Insulin resistance (can lead to diabetes)
  • Weakness
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Kidney stones
  • Liver disease
  • Migraine or regular headaches
  • Sarcopenia
  • Nerve pain
  • Osteoporosis

 

Being a mineral that occurs in spinach, as well as various nuts, one can assume that many packaged foods that are typically consumed today do not include natural sources of magnesium. With modern farming practices, fertilizers decrease the amount of magnesium found in the soil, thereby allowing smaller amounts into the vegetables, and nuts that ultimately end up in our grocery stores. Organic farming processes should be preferred when choosing vegetables and nuts for this reason. This is only a recent understanding, and large farming operations are attempting to employ more natural means of fertilizing the soil to eliminate this issue.

 

There are 2 commonly consumed items that damage the body’s process of absorbing magnesium. The first being carbonated beverages, which make magnesium on absorbable, and the second being refined sugar that has a similar process to carbonation and eliminates usable magnesium from the body. Avoiding cola beverages obviously can reduce the potential sugar and carbonation intake, however carbonation exists another beverages, and refined sugar is in a plethora of packaged foods. Avoiding packaged foods as much as possible and consuming the darker green vegetables as well as nuts can greatly improve an individual’s ability to retain calcium and avoid osteopenia or osteoporosis. Keeping in mind all the above health conditions an individual would also prefer to avoid. Avoiding these conditions also can keep individuals from other pharmaceuticals that are designed to treat the various conditions. Many such pharmaceutical treatments how unfavorable side effects.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta