After having handled half of the Science Round-Up from Thursday yesterday, yesterday, there is still something left to serve: seconds to the seconds, if you will and probably not so "new" as the average SuppVersity news.
What sounds like a question that could be answered in one, at best two sentences turns out to be one of the root causes of the whole confusion about magnesium. With the erythrocyte (red blood cell) test for magnesium, there is however an alternative available, which may not be just as reliable but appears to show a relatively high correlation with whole body magnesium levels in many, but not all studies (Malon. Honestly, I would hope that it is unlikely, because if that is the case for someone who is not taking supplemental magnesium you can almost be sure that her or she is following a healthy whole foods diet. If you take a look at table 2 you will see that even the average German gets enough magnesium in his diet, irrespective of his age, and much contrary to our neighbors in the East, West and Northwest (I could not resist to mark zinc another of those purported minerals of which conventional wisdom tells you that you simply cannot get enough from your diet). I am not going to tell you to stop supplementing with magnesium if you feel that this has done you good in the past.
As far as the best forms are concerned the number of studies comparing multiple forms to each other is limited and the inter-comparison of different studies not really legit. A note on topical Epsom salt from the early 20th century: While I did tell you on the show that I could not find peer-reviewed adequately powered studies on the topical absorption of magnesium in the for of mg oil or Epsom salt, I found a comment in a 1915 paper on the potential harm caused by cosmetics quite enlightening, esp. Aside from the almost cult-like worship of epsom salt baths and topical ng oils, the notion of a general depletion of mg in the foods we eat is one of the favorites among the bazillion of websites run by people who hoax you to believe they were concerned with your physical health, when all they are concerned with is their own financial health. It is, as the data in figure 2 goes to show you true that the amount of magnesium in many of the foods we consume is lower these days than it was amidst WW2. If anything of these sounds familiar, I would certainly consider testing my mg levels (erythrocyte test) before and while I was supplementing and that's not about wasting money on potentially unnecessary supplements, but much more about making sure that you actually get, absorb and retain enough magnesium.
Bottom line: Magnesium is certainly an important mineral, but its effects must not be seen in isolation, it should not be supplemented in copious amounts in isolation without medical indication and it may not be misunderstood as a natural pharmacological agent - it works by (a) replacing a deficiency or (b) countering an imbalance. Malliaropoulos N, Tsitas K, Porfiriadou A, Papalada A, R Ames P, Del Buono A, Lippi G, Maffulli N.
Mensink GB, Fletcher R, Gurinovic M, Huybrechts I, Lafay L, Serra-Majem L, Szponar L, Tetens I, Verkaik-Kloosterman J, Baka A, Stephen AM. Wilborn CD, Kerksick CM, Campbell BI, Taylor LW, Marcello BM, Rasmussen CJ, Greenwood MC, Almada A, Kreider RB. Why do we need to know our magnesium level?  Mary Ackerley, MD, a leading psychiatrist who practices Functional Psychiatry and is certified in the leading edge treatment of mold illness, explains that there are links between magnesium and blood pressure and anxiety, depression, headaches and migraines, twitches, and restless legs.
CAPTCHAThis question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions. Type the characters you see in the picture; if you can't read them, submit the form and a new image will be generated. Experts estimate that 50% to 80% of Americans are deficient in magnesium – a vital mineral involved in more than 300 enzymatic processes at the cellular level.
This isn’t just about Americans (though we have it bad) – a great number of people from all over the world are magnesium deficient. The number of problems that can arise from insufficient magnesium are exhausting to recite because magnesium is found and used everywhere in your body – bones, muscles, every single organ, hair, nails, and blood. Here we have four of the top killers in the world – cancer, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Diabetes: In a meta analysis of 13 cohort studies, 536,318 participants, and 24,516 cases of diabetes, increased magnesium intake was found to be “significantly” inversely correlated with type 2 diabetes. Stroke: In a meta analysis of 7 studies, 241,378 participants, and 6,477 cases of stroke, increased magnesium intake was found to have a “modest, but statistically significant” inverse correlation with stroke risk. Ischaemic Heart Disease: In a meta analysis of 16 studies and 313,041 individuals, there were 11,995 Cardiovascular Disease cases and 7,534 of those were Ischaemic Heart Disease (2,686 of which were fatal IHD events).
All four of these major non-communicable diseases are tied to low magnesium levels or their risk is significantly reduced by increased magnesium intake. I did find one interesting review which suggested that magnesium has “a complex relationship with cancer.” Since this was the only negative magnesium information I found from a reliable source, I wanted to address it. It says that the tumors of magnesium-deficient mice didn’t grow as fast, but that the cancer metastasized more.
To me, it appears that higher magnesium levels helped to protect the healthy areas of the mouse from cancer.
In light of magnesium’s proven importance for health and proper body functioning, and far more evidence of its deficiency being carcinogenic and its higher consumption being anti-cancerous (in human and mice studies alike), I wouldn’t worry about this. If you can get adequate magnesium from food, that’s ideal, but most of us don’t, and would benefit from supplementing another source of magnesium (consult your doctor, especially if you take medication). How it works: Magnesium relaxes muscles, while calcium contracts them, and the two minerals balance each other out.
While we know that magnesium improves skin health when applied, some may wonder whether rubbing magnesium chloride onto your skin is effective for restoring magnesium levels internally. For approximately three of these five months, I applied magnesium oil to my body once or twice a day.
This data explains why I was more relaxed, slept better, and had fewer muscle twitches (exactly what magnesium is known to help with). One month ago, I jammed my left middle finger playing basketball, and the second knuckle from the fingertip turned blue over the few next hours.
Anecdotal claims like this are not always reliable, which is why I emphasize that my blood tests align with my experience. One pilot study involved a regimen of 20 sprays of magnesium oil and a 20 minute magnesium foot bath per day over a period of 12 weeks.
Early evidence suggests that magnesium oil is an effective way to increase magnesium levels, perhaps more so than epsom salt baths, but either or both methods can be used to supplement magnesium and support general and muscle health. Oral magnesium supplements, while convenient and easy, can cause loose stools and appear to be less effective than transdermal therapy or epsom salts, but they are still meaningful towards restoring magnesium. I hope this article has convinced you of the importance of magnesium, and that magnesium oil works. So I opened a book that a good friend gave me: Transdermal Magnesium Therapy by Mark Sircus, OMD. Yes, I feel really good with my natural desiccated thyroid in the treatment of my hypothyroid.
Of course, it’s not really an oil at all, but it has a salt-water-and-oily feel to it. The magnesium deficiency problem is HUGE and is the underlying cause of a majority of the health problems afflicting people today. Cindy, I know that this is an old post but please have your sons parathyroid gland checked out. If your son’s calcium is high, make sure your doctor checks his parathyroid hormone level (PTH) When calcium is high, or even in the high range of normal, PTH should be LOW. I am so thankful that naturopaths are able to open up and be honest about mineral deficiencies. My experience and research shows that T3 increases the CoA line of nutrients which can quite quickly deplete magnesium. But for those with thyroid disease, yes, the Stop the Thyroid Madness book is a detailed outline of what patients have learned about better thyroid treatment and their wisdom. I was just recently diagnosed in February of hypothyroid and also found out I was in full-blown menopause. Forgot to mention when I asked my doctor about posssibility of hypothyroidism his reply was “your symptoms are the same as depression.
Hi Viral, were you able to track down a diagnostic lab in India which tests RBC Magnesium, or the international lab which accepts blood samples from India? I have recently had bloodwork done and my white blood cell count is high, all other results are within normal ranges. To say the least, I was fed up with the doctor appointments, their lack of knowledge, lab tests and begging for the right medication. If anyone is experiencing loose stools or GI problems with Magnesium intake please add a good probiotic to your daily regime as this will certainly help control these issues. Has anyone found a good solution for magnesium for adrenal health that doesn’t have any of the fillers that are bad for Hashimotos Thyroiditis people?


Since 2012, we have been publishing a Utilization Spotlight in every issue of the Communique. A review of Mayo Medical Laboratories test requests revealed an increase in orders for erythrocyte magnesium (Mg-RBC) and erythrocyte zinc (Zn-RBC). A recent review of Mayo Medical Laboratories test requests revealed an increase in orders for erythrocyte magnesium (Mg-RBC) and erythrocyte zinc (Zn-RBC). Zinc is an essential element and is required for active wound healing and also has a role in thyroid homeostasis.
Measurement of zinc can be performed in plasma or serum, red blood cells, neutrophils, lymphocytes, and hair. Magnesium testing may be ordered to assess a deficiency as part of an evaluation of malabsorption, malnutrition, diarrhea, or alcoholism. Only two peer-reviewed papers in the medical literature address the clinical use of Mg-RBC. 3,4 A 2011 paper by Sales and colleagues concludes that serum Mg (Mg-S) provides fundamentally the same information as Mg-RBC regarding the involvement of Mg in control of glucose. Subacute thyroiditis (silent and symptomatic type) is acute or subacute inflammation of the thyroid gland NOT related to underlying autoimmune thyroid disease, but probably caused by host response to a pathogen that affects the gland. Postpartum thyroiditis is very similar to subacute thyroiditis, but autoimmune in etiology in predisposed women.
Thyrotoxicosis hypothyroidism typically develops four to 10 weeks after radioiodine treatment. Kuriyama C, Mori K, Nakagawa Y, et al: Erythrocyte zinc concentration as an indicator to distinguish painless thyroiditis-associated transient hypothyroidism from permanent hypothyroidism. Sales CH, Pedrosa L, Lima JG, et al: Influence of magnesium status and magnesium intake on the blood glucose control in patients with type 2 diabetes. Corica F, Allegra A, Ientile R, et al: Reduced intraplatelet magnesium concentrations in elderly patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM).
This entry was posted in Benign Hematology Disorders, Hematology, Utilization Reading Room, Utilization Spotlight. About UsMayo Medical Laboratories is a global reference laboratory operating within Mayo Clinic’s Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology. Based on a standard blood test you can only exclude that your levels are (a) so high or (b) so low that you better head straight to the emergency room. It is thus no wonder that not magnesium deficiencies, but high magensium levels are a problem that is commonly observed in athletes. Therefore I have simply copied + pasted the figure that went with a previous article on the matter - as you can see, you can generally use whatever form of magnesium you want - even the cheap oxides, which worked wonders for anxiety ridden ladies in a study by De Souza et al. The mg loss in meats, for example, is  driven by the processing, while corned beef has lost almost 50% of its "original" mg content, the amount of mg in roast beef and steaks is still the same, the one in turkey is even up by ~30% and for chicken it remained 100% stable (Thomas. Ionized magnesium in erythrocytes--the best magnesium parameter to observe hypo- or hypermagnesemia. Magnesium deficiency regulates vitamin D metabolizing enzymes and type II sodium-phosphate cotransporter mRNA expression in rats.
Magnesium deficiency induces anxiety and HPA axis dysregulation: modulation by therapeutic drug treatment.
Cause of exercise associated muscle cramps (EAMC)--altered neuromuscular control, dehydration or electrolyte depletion? The mineral depletion of foods available to us as a nation (1940-2002)--a review of the 6th Edition of McCance and Widdowson. Effects of Zinc Magnesium Aspartate (ZMA) Supplementation on Training Adaptations and Markers of Anabolism and Catabolism.
It helps to build and maintain bone health (can help to prevent osteoporosis) and is even required for the synthesis of DNA!
And that’s because 68% of American adults consume less magnesium than the recommended daily allowance (RDA), according to a 2005 nationally representative survey. Not only do these diseases kill, but they often reduce quality of life, sometimes dramatically. I don’t see why anyone would be surprised – magnesium is required for your body to function correctly and most of us are too low in it. And that’s especially interesting, because cancer stages I-IV are defined by the level that the cancer has metastasized (spread). And even with higher tumor growth, doesn’t this support the idea that higher magnesium levels contain the cancer by confining growth to the affected area? But most diets today are heavy in calcium and too low in magnesium, and this can create a severely lopsided calcium-to-magnesium ratio (bad news). The following screenshot shows my magnesium RBC levels for each test – February and July. I did and still do apply magnesium oil directly to twitching muscles, and sometimes it stops them in seconds; I also use it to recover from workouts faster and with less soreness. The deep bruised color (and the pain) faded less than three minutes after applying magnesium oil around the affected area.
You can see above that it has worked really well for me, but because it’s new and, like many natural remedies, few people have the incentive to spend the money to research it, there are no big studies. The study had just nine people, but eight of the nine increased their magnesium levels, and the average change for all nine people was a 59.7% increase. If you decide to take an oral supplement, go with magnesium citrate, not magnesium oxide supplements, which have a very poor absorption rate of 4%.
If you want more researched, helpful articles like this, try subscribing to Deep Existence. They have written for the LA Times, The Washington Post, President Bill Clinton's White House, Forbes, and more.
After confirming my situation via the RBC Magnesium lab test (very important to first find out. Other Mg supplements (including mg glycinate) are only partially absorbed and the remainder goes to the colon, where the mg causes the body to secrete water into the colon, causing loose stools. She encourages 2 times the magnesium of calcium in any supplement and she actually discourages the use of calcium supplements all together. I recently started taking a supplement that included vit D, calcium, magnesium, and zinc because I thought they were needed for the vit D to work better. If one can’t get magnesium levels up and if blood pressure is rising or fluctuating, check insulin levels.
Nine days after taking magnesium citrate and two days after being on 500-600 mg the palpitations and irregularity got better!
By accident, I ran across an article on magnesium deficiency which led me to the website of Dr. A good probiotic should have 14 billion good bacteria – like PB 8 brands for example. Discussions with health care providers ordering these tests indicate that Mg-RBC is used almost solely to assess nutritional status in diabetic patients. Other diseases that cause low serum zinc are ulcerative colitis, Crohn disease, regional enteritis, sprue, intestinal bypass, neoplastic disease, and increased catabolism induced by anabolic steroids. The 2011 paper by Kuriyama and colleagues indicates that zinc levels in red blood cells can differentiate transient hypothyroidism from permanent hypothyroidism.1 A careful read of the paper indicates only marginal differentiation.
Magnesium levels may also be monitored in patients with a kidney disorder or uncontrolled diabetes, along with kidney function tests such as a BUN and creatinine, to monitor kidney function and make sure that the person is not excreting or retaining excessive amounts of magnesium. The authors provide considerable insight regarding the effect of Mg-S on glucose, but only mention Mg-RBC as an alternative. There is initial glandular destruction (hyperthyroid phase because of release of stored thyroid hormone), followed two to six weeks later by a hypothyroid phase (hormone stores depleted, parts of the thyroid destroyed), lasting two to six months, and then, usually within a year, complete recovery. It is thought to be triggered by the sudden immune system upregulation that takes place after delivery, as the immune system is quite suppressed during the second and third trimester. Depending on the dose given, and the uptake in the patient’s gland and the gland’s size, this may be permanent or transient. This site provides the latest medical, operational and educational news from Mayo Medical Laboratories.


Magnesium is, just as the other electrolytes, simply too important for your body to have them drop below a certain margin in which your heart works optimally. In fact, the NHANES data from 1999-2000 suggests that the average American Caucasian and Mexican man below 50 gets enough magnesium from his food only! I mean, what are you supposed to do, when even your mother "lies" to you about cramps being caused by magnesium deficiency?
And maybe some of them were even on the proven non-ergogenic ZMA (zinc + magnesium + vitamin B6; cf. What I want to remind you of is yet the fact that taking 100% of the RDA is imho the absolute maximum. Wilber writes that the ability of respective products to penetrate the "unbroken skin has as yet not been demonstrated" and cautions against the sue "of the now widely advertised lotions containing magnesium sulphate or Epsom salt", of which "the latter preparations serve very well to show the gullability of that portion of the public that is desirous of improving its facial appearance. The directions are to spray and rub it into skin for absorption – a process called transdermal magnesium therapy. The Magnesium RBC test measures the amount of magnesium present at the cellular level in red blood cells (this is said to be the most accurate test for total magnesium levels).
My doctor did it through Quest Labs),  I know I can’t improve it with oral supplements. I have taken just extra calcium before and I got some chest discomfort (I believe it was my heart), so I stopped taking it and the discomfort went away. Not to scare you but I feel I should let you know that my grandfather was high for years and no one ever looked into his parathyroid. High calcium is very dangerous and is one of the symptoms of parathyroid malfunction which is often overlooked. It has a great nutrients for helping bone density, The formula for calcium in this works for me. In this spotlight, Mayo Medical Laboratories investigated the utility of red blood cell testing. Use of Zn-RBC determinations to differentiate transient from permanent hypothyroidism has been described in the literature, although it is also possible that testing is being done to assess nutritional levels. Some research shows that zinc deficiency correlates with short-term decreased triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) levels.1 Zinc depletion occurs either because it is not absorbed from the diet or it is lost after absorption. Hair and red blood cell turnover is slow; thus, the zinc levels in these specimen types do not reflect recent changes with respect to zinc status2.
The Mayo Clinic Endocrinology Thyroid Group advises that there are better methods to differentiate the two disorders. The remainder is involved in intermediary metabolic processes; about 70 percent is present in free form, while the other 30 percent is bound to proteins (especially albumin), citrates, phosphate, and other complex formers.
Mg-RBC provides no additional clinical utility beyond that provided by Mg-S, but requires unusual specimen handling to isolate packed red blood cells immediately after collection.
However, 10 to 20 percent of patients will have lost so much thyroid tissue in the process that they do not recover and are left with permanent hypothyroidism.
This thyroiditis does not have a pronounced hyperthyroid phase (more gradual development) but, again, the hypothyroid phase that ensues usually lasts no more than a year.
If transient, recovery can progress within a few months to a euthyroid state (with an increased risk of recurrence of thyrotoxicosis at some later stage). I mean, anyone doing a cursory Google search will have to conclude that there is nothing magnesium cannot cure, right?. So if there is not enough magnesium around, your body will tap into tissue stores the status of which is obviously not identical to the serum levels on a standard lab test.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the women, and both male and female African Americans who have trouble meeting their requirements even if one accounts for the additional magnesium from supplements (NHANES). Even if you don't end up with high levels due to supplementing more and don't care about wasting money, there is one thing that's commonly overlooked about human physiology and that is how the intake and excretion of nutrients are highly inter-related.
As long as you take your magnesium supplements in reasonably low doses - the dose in the De Souza study for example was 200mg + 50mg B6 - and over a long enough period, they are going to bring your levels back up - if not sooner, then later. As Epsom salt, magnesium sulphate can usually be purchased for 5 cents a pound, while in the form of any one of the popular skin or wrinkle lotions it is sold at the rate of from $2 to $4 a pound." (Wilbert. It is also a very intriguing coincidence that the same websites will usually also tell you how we are all not just magnesium deficient, but also copper toxic. Every Tuesday, I’ll send you an email with great information on how to stay focused, which is the “magnesium of personal development” if you know what I mean. She says we get more than enough calcium in most cases and are terriby magnesium deficient as a nation. He had the symptoms associated with hyperparathyroid and it wasn’t until 2mo before he passed away that I was able to get my mom to question the docs and take a further look. Magnesium deficiency is not always the answer in super high calcium readings and it is too serious to be overlooked, often taking many years to be diagnosed.
If insulin gets too high, you have insulin resistance and it doesn’t allow magnesium into the cells.
Let me also say that gout or pseudogout sufferers will be helped a lot by magnesium supplementation and lots and lots of water.
Since Mayo Medical Laboratories offers the serum test for zinc  and magnesium, we investigated the utility of red blood cell testing. Dietary deficiency may be due to absence (total parenteral nutrition) or because the zinc in the diet is bound to fiber and not available for absorption.
Increased loss of zinc by frequent urination appears to contribute to the marginal zinc nutritional status that has been observed in diabetics. Whatever you may suffer from, someone has already found out that it must be related to magnesium deficiency or, even more profitable, taking the wrong form of magnesium supplements. In other words, if your body switches into a "get rid of magnesium" mode it is likely you are loosing other electrolytes you do not supplement in copious amounts (e.g. Strange in view of the fact that the average reduction in copper is -62% and thus >2x higher than that of magnesium. I plan on making sure my husband is tested, as I strongly suspect he is low as a diabetic with digestive issues.
I am interested in learning about iodine and in what format it should be taken in to remove bromine.
Once the thyroid storage system has been replenished, then the full supplement is available for uptake. It comes down to purity and instead of the pill going into your stomach and not getting what you need, go with a spray so you can get it into your skin and it goes right into your bloodstream.
I am also using magnesium oils and lotions since I cannot tolerate more than the oral dose I mentioned due to the bowel issues. After 3 months, he retested levels and I have been on the same dosage for over 30 years-very stable.
I use a slow release mag and if I don’t take it, I get terrible leg cramps which wake me up with the severity. He even took the time to email me when I was desperate on finding why my grandfather kept going downhill and how to approach the doctors. If I awaken with severe leg cramps, I take CALM (a magnesium citrate powder which is added to warm water) which makes the leg cramps go away within a few minutes. That was last friday,over the course of the weekend and into the beginning of the week I found myself waking up with sweats, leg cramps muscle tenderness and frequently going to the bathroom along with heart palpitations and extremely vivid nightmares and waking up quite often. And that I could lower the dosage of armor bye cutting it in half and to come back and see her again for blood work in 3 weeks. Does anyone have any suggestions well what they think might be happening because I felt fine until we did the increase and I noticed all these other issues coming about over the course of several weeks and now she’s telling me its anxiety???



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