Articles on Health
Magnitude of Magnesium
Magnitude of Magnesium
When we think of health and minerals, we mostly think of calcium and iron. Product labels proudly announce the presence of these minerals, and we
are encouraged to obtain adequate amounts of them.
are we missing the boat? Might there be a "more important"
Although we don’t really believe that one
mineral is "more important" than another—we need them all—we
should give more attention to magnesium. This little-known
mineral plays a large part in our health.
A mineral of great magnitudeMagnesium makes up about
0.05 percent of our total body weight, or about 20 to 30
grams. It is the fourth most common mineral in the body, and
the body’s second most abundant positively charged particle
(next to potassium). Within the cells, magnesium plays a
critical role in the function of more than 300 enzymatic
reactions involving glucose, fat, protein, and
According to the Harvard Heart
Letter (August 1991), when magnesium levels are low, a
host or problems can arise. Studies have shown that people who
consume greater amounts of magnesium from hard water or their
diet are less prone to cardiovascular disease and sudden death
than those with a lower magnesium intake. This may be because
low blood levels of magnesium promote atherosclerosis. Lower
magnesium levels may also raise blood pressure or lead to
arrhythmias. Some studies have noted improved survival after a
heart attack in patients given magnesium supplements.
Obstetricians have found that the developing placenta and
fetus drain maternal magnesium stores, and low levels of
magnesium may contribute to the cardiovascular problems seen
in women during pregnancy.
does more than contribute to good cardiovascular health.
Magnesium helps turn food into energy and transmit electrical
impulses across nerves and muscles. These impulses generate
what’s called neuromuscular contraction, which causes your
muscles to flex. Thus, a deficiency in magnesium may result in
muscle cramps—those who are physically active have a greater
need for this mineral than the more
Magnesium has been used for asthma, as it
helps relax the lung muscles that open the airways for easier
breathing. It is currently gaining interest in relation to
chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) as many CFS patients have low
blood magnesium levels and magnesium may improve energy
Magnesium is also important in controlling
blood sugar levels, as it plays a central role in the
secretion and action of insulin. It can improve insulin
response and reaction. It is also being studied for its
positive effect on fibromyalgia, migraine and tension
headaches, osteoporosis, and premenstrual syndrome.
professionals believe that few people get enough of this
important mineral. The problem starts at the beginning of the
food chain. Vegetables, pulses (peas, beans, and lentils), and
cereals are good sources of magnesium, but because of depleted
soils, these foods carry less of this mineral. What’s more,
today’s eating habits often preclude these foods in favor of
sugary and fatty foods.
Even if we are eating
magnesium-rich foods, we may not be getting enough magnesium.
Only 30 to 50 percent of our average daily intake is absorbed
in the small intestines.
Compounding this are factors
that inhibit absorption. High amounts of calcium, oxalic acid
(found in spinach), phytates (found in whole grain cereals),
and poorly digested fats interfere with absorption. Phosphates
are also a problem. They bind to magnesium in the bowel and
prevent its absorption. Phosphates, of course, are in
abundance in carbonated soft drinks, and, according to The Big
Family Guide to All the Minerals, a 12-ounce can of a
carbonated soft drink, which might contain 30 mg of phosphate,
might eliminate the same amount of magnesium from the
Magnesium levels are also difficult to check.
That’s because most magnesium resides within the cells—60
percent is found in the bones and 28 percent in soft tissue,
with most of this found in the liver and muscle. Only about 2
percent of our magnesium is found in body fluids, including
blood serum, which is where mineral levels are generally
Although figures vary, it is safe to say that
some 80 percent of us are not getting enough of this valuable
mineral. That means that 80 percent of us are missing out on
an easy way to improve our health and truly find optimum
Getting itConsidering that the magnesium absorption
through the digestive tract is low and that so much can
interfere with it, what is a good way to get
First, it always pays to increase your
magnesium levels through the foods you eat. Although not all
of it is absorbed, foods contain so many other nutrients and
phytochemicals that the first option is always
One can also consider oral supplementation, but
here, low absorption plays a role and you do not get the
"extras" that make magnesium-rich foods
There is also the intravenous option, but
who really wants to do this?
There may be another way,
and that is through the skin. Soaking in magnesium-rich water
may be the perfect way to help supplement your magnesium
levels. The magnesium (and other helpful minerals) found in
waters are absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream and
are distributed throughout the body.
AIM Product Suggestion:
If you have any questions, please send an email to
AIM This Way
510 SE 5th Ave #908
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Product prices and charges are subject to change without notice.
AIM products are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, mitigate or prevent a disease or illness. Results may vary per person.