Magnesium deficiency – Who needs additional magnesium?

29/11/2015 0 Comment(s) MAGNESIUM,

Magnesium from Mendeleev's periodic table

Are we all underserved when it comes to Magnesium and do we suffer from Magnesium deficiency?

Already in 2006, the World Health Organization (WHO) noted that most people worldwide suffer from magnesium deficiency.

The last major nutritional study in Germany (VERA study) showed that for up to 40 percent of the population it is the start of a magnesium deficiency, because the recommended values of the German Nutrition Society (DGE) have not been met.

The Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection comes to the same result in the published 2008 National Nutrition Survey II to the eating habits of Germans.

Nutritional deficiency is rare and characterized by progressive muscle weakness and neuromuscular dysfunction. Mild hypomagnesaemia (low blood magnesium) is common in severely ill patients, alcoholics and those with malabsorption disorders.

In contrast, intakes of magnesium that are judged to be too low are quite common in the UK. One in five women aged 19-34 years and more than half of teenage girls have intakes below the LRNI (51% of 11-14 age group and 53% of 15-18 age group) and more than 20% of boys aged 11-14 years are also at risk of low intakes.

Why Magnesium deficiency?

How is it that in this country people suffer from magnesium deficiency, where we live in abundance? On the one hand our foods contain less and less magnesium, on the other hand, our body needs more and more magnesium because of our stressed-out lifestyle and unhealthy eating habits.

The result is a chronic magnesium deficiency that runs through the entire world population. A variety of ailments and diseases can be causally attributed to the lack of magnesium.

An acute magnesium deficiency can manifest itself in muscle twitching, convulsions and cardiac arrhythmias.

Reasons for magnesium deficiency:

Increased stress

In stressful situations the need for magnesium is increased and the stress hormones adrenaline and noradrenaline are increasingly distributed, which simultaneously constrict the vessels. This increases the blood pressure and the pulse frequency of the heart. Because magnesium influences the release of stress hormones, magnesium deficiency can increase the stress symptoms in addition.

Increased magnesium requirement during sport

During exercise, the body consumes significantly more magnesium because of increased muscle activity. In addition, more magnesium is excreted because of increased sweating. Adequate magnesium prevents muscle cramps, the build up of lactic acid, which is partly responsible (among other things) for muscles and increases endurance.

Poor nutrition

Our ancestors have eaten magnesium rich foods over thousands of years. Main foods were nuts, whole grains and vegetables, which are rich in magnesium. Consequently, there was no need for the body to store magnesium. For this reason, the body has not learned to stock magnesium and we still have to take daily magnesium. But what about our diet nowadays? White bread, fast food and candy contain practically no magnesium.

Depleted soils

Even people who are now on a special diet and eat healthy, do not get the amount of magnesium from the food that they need. The reason lies in the depleted soil. Monocultures and the use of pesticides have prevented the soil from regenerating naturally. Acid rain, which contains nitric acid reacts with magnesium, thereby reducing the magnesium which is freely available. But even if magnesium is still present in the soil, the absorption of magnesium is prevented in the plants because potassium-based fertilisers are used by agriculture. Potassium can be easily absorbed by plants and so magnesium is always left behind. For those reasons, plants only contain a small amount of magnesium.

Inadequate Absorption

The absorption of magnesium in the gastrointestinal tract is problematic because magnesium is on one hand a very reactive material, on the other hand, compared to other minerals always draws the short straw. The magnesium resorption is hampered by high concentrations of calcium, phosphorus, fat, protein and alcohol as well as a lack of vitamin B1 and B6. Even with ideal conditions a maximum of 50 percent of the magnesium contained in food are absorbed.

Magnesium deficiency because of alcohol

Alcohol promotes the excretion of magnesium through the kidneys. In chronic alcoholism or higher alcohol consumption magnesium gets lost both through an increased hepatic and renal excretion.

Magnesium deficiency by medicinal products

Taking certain medications can cause a magnesium deficiency. Diuretics, antihypertensive agents, such as ACE inhibitors, laxatives or cardiotonic can decrease the magnesium levels in the body massively. Other medications, such as birth control pills, insulin, antibiotics or cortisone are also associated with magnesium deficiency.

Increased magnesium requirement during pregnancy

Nausea, cramps, high blood pressure or preterm labor – everything is connected with magnesium deficiency and the resulting tension of smooth muscle.

So do you think you are magnesium deficient?

Looking forward to hear from you

Wish you all an amazing day

All the best and healthy regards



Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This information is for educational purpose only. It is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.


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