Biophysical Properties of Magnesium
Magnesium is essential for bone, protein and fatty acid formation, making new cells, activating B vitamins, relaxing muscles, clotting blood, and forming ATP (energy the body runs on); insulin secretion and function also require magnesium. Make your own colloidal magnesium at http://www.biophysica.com/colloidal_generator.html
magnesium n. a light silvery-white metallic element of the alkaline earth series, occuring principally in magnesite, dolomite and carnallite: used in light structural alloys. Symbol: Mg; atomic no.:12; atomic wt.: 24.312; valency: 2; relative density: 1.738; melting point: 651°C; boiling pt.: 1107°C;crystal structure: close packed hexagonal (a=3.2030 c= 5.2002)
1.56 W/cm/oK @ 298.2 oK
4.45 microhm-cm @ 20 oC
0.243 Cal/g/oK @ 25 oC
Heat of Vaporization:
32.517 K-Cal/gm atom at 1090 oC
Heat of Fusion:
2.16 Cal/gm mole
Characteristics: Silvery, moderately hard alkaline-earth metal, readily fabricated by all standard methods. Lightest of the structural metals. Strong reducing agent. Electrical conductivity similar to aluminum. Soluble in acids, insoluble in water. Magnesium is the central element of the chlorophyll molecule and is also an important component of red blood corpuscles.
Hazards: Combustible at 650 oC (solid metal). Flammable, dangerous fire hazard (powder, flakes, etc.). Use dry sand or talc to extinguish.
Magnesium has a greater driving potential than either zinc or aluminium, making it the most widely used and economical sacrificial anode material for non marine applications and for areas where resistivity is high
Our intake of this essential mineral has declined sharply due to modern day food processing which can strip away up to 80% of the magnesium. And the reliance on fast foods, in place of mixed diets containing green vegetables greatly reduces magnesium intake. Official figures show that up to 72% of women and 42% of men receive less then the recommended level of magnesium. Research from around the world is implicating magnesium intakes with a range of health issues including the health of the heart, the loss of bone strength as we age, health of the lungs, our vitality and energy levels and in women the monthly changes of hormone levels.
Magnesium-Oxide 500 mg 100 tablets
Primary Uses: Builds bones and teeth, assists in blood clotting, muscle, nerve, hormone, and enzyme function, and energy regulation. Secondary Use: Benefits overall health.
Magnesium is an essential mineral that is needed for over 100 enzymatic reactions in the body, including those for nerve and muscle function, regulation of body temperature, energy metabolism, and DNA and RNA synthesis.* Magnesium also improves calcium absorption.*Magnesium plays important roles in cardiovascular health, mood, maintenance of bone mass, and health of all tissues. *Magnesium Citrate Powder 1 lb.
Magnesium Citrate is called the anti-stress mineral. It is used to calm nerves, promote sleep and proper digestion. Magnesium works with calcium to support cell, tissue, and organ functions, and contributes to bone formation and mineralization. Magnesium citrate attracts and retains water in the intestine, softening stools and inducing the urge to defecate. It is used to treat short-term constipation and for rapid emptying of the colon for rectal and bowel examinations. Magnesium is one of the few essential nutrients for which deficiencies are fairly common. Did you know that you need a minimum of 350 to 400 mg of magnesium, preferably magnesium citrate, daily? Because of its effect on various enzymes, a deficiency of magnesium leads to a wide range of symptoms, including irritability, fatigue, insomnia, cardiovascular problems, pain, depression, asthma, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), muscle weakness, cramps, anxiety, panic attacks, migraine headaches and high blood pressure. Calcium and magnesium are essential for preventing heart disease, the nation's number one killer. Within the last fifty years, research indicates that approximately eight million people have died from heart failure, due to a lack of magnesium alone.
Magnesium is the second lightest member of the alkaline earth metals. It is sometimes combined with aluminum to form a lightweight alloy. Magnesium forms a wide range of ionic compounds. Some common magnesium compounds include milk of magnesia, which is a suspension of magnesium hydroxide and epsom salts, which is magnesium sulfate hexahydrate. The ionic compounds of magnesium generally tend to be more soluble than the heavier members of the group. Magnesium can also form covalent bonds with carbon, an example of which is the Grignard reagent phenylmagnesium bromide. Chlorophyll, the compound responsible for the green color of leaves and for photosynthesis, is a coordination compound containing magnesium.
The most important sources of magnesium are seawater and dolomite rock, a mixture of calcium and magnesium carbonates. Magnesium is generally obtained by the electrolysis of magnesium halides. In the production of magnesium from seawater the magnesium is precipitated as the hydroxide and converted to the chloride by reaction with hydrochloric acid. The magnesium chloride is recovered by evaporation of the solution, and magnesium metal is obtained by electrolysis of the molten salt.
Magnesium is one of the least reactive of the alkaline earth metals. If heated it will react with water to form magnesium hydroxide and hydrogen gas, but this reaction occurs very slowly. Magnesium ribbon burns in air with a brilliant white light to form magnesium oxide. In fact, old-fashioned flash bulbs contained magnesium wire in an atmosphere of pure oxygen. Magnesium will also react with any of the halogens to form the corresponding magnesium halide, and will react with nitrogen to form magnesium nitride at high temperatures. When heated with sulfur, magnesium sulfide is formed. Magnesium reacts readily with acids and displaces the hydrogen from the acid as hydrogen gas.
Magnesium is an essential mineral for human nutrition.
Magnesium has several important metabolic functions. It plays a role in the production and transport of energy. It is also important for the contraction and relaxation of muscles. Magnesium is involved in the synthesis of protein, and it assists in the functioning of certain enzymes in the body.
Most dietary magnesium comes from vegetables, particularly dark-green, leafy vegetables. Other foods that are good sources of magnesium are soy products, such as soy flour and tofu; legumes and seeds; nuts (such as almonds and cashews); whole grains (such as brown rice and millet); and fruits or vegetables (such as bananas, dried apricots, and avocados).
Toxic symptoms from increased magnesium intake are not common because the body eliminates excess amounts. Magnesium excess almost always occurs only when magnesium is supplemented as a medication.
Magnesium deficiency is rare. The symptoms include muscle weakness
, and sleepiness
. Deficiency of magnesium can occur in alcoholics or people whose magnesium absorption is decreased due to surgery, burns
, or problems with malabsorption
(inadequate absorption of nutrients from the intestinal tract). Certain medications or low blood levels of calcium may be associated with magnesium deficiency.
Deficiency symptoms have three categories:
- Early symptoms include irritability, anorexia, fatigue, insomnia, and muscle twitching. Other symptoms include poor memory, apathy, confusion, and reduced ability to learn.
- Moderate deficiency symptoms consist of rapid heartbeat and other cardiovascular changes.
- Severe deficiency symptoms could lead to tingling, numbness, and a sustained contraction of the muscles, along with hallucinations and delirium.
These are the recommended daily requirements of magnesium:
- 1-3 years old: 80 milligrams
- 4-8 years old: 130 milligrams
- 9-13 years old: 240 milligrams
- 14-18 years old (boys): 410 milligrams
- 14-18 years old (girls): 360 milligrams
- Adult females: 310 milligrams
- Pregnancy: 360-400 milligrams
- Breastfeeding women: 320-360 milligrams
- Adult males: 400 milligrams
This test is performed when an abnormal blood level of magnesium is suspected.
About half of the body's magnesium is found in bone, where it plays a structural role (along with calcium, phosphate, and various proteins). In all other tissues magnesium is among the most abundant of all the intracellular (inside the cell) electrolytes, second only to potassium. Magnesium is necessary for essentially all biochemical processes. For example, synthesis and use of ATP (the major source of energy for all cells).
|by Dr Barry Durrant-Peatfield, MB BS, LRCP, MRCS. |Dr Durrant-Peatfield has had a special interest in thyroid problems for over 20 years, which culminated in his recent book The Great Thyroid Scandal and How to Survive it (see: Reviews). He lectures widely and is about to return to private practice after retiring some years ago. For details of his lectures and publications, see www.baronsdownpublishing.com .
When most people think of magnesium they probably think of fireworks, but in fact the element is quite extraordinary and crucially important for the proper working of the body. Even so, the average person may have no more than 1 or 2 oz of it at best in their entire body. Half of this amount is within the bones (magnesium supports bone mineralization); much of the remainder is in the soft tissues and only one percent in the blood itself. As with calcium, magnesium in the bones acts as a reservoir for use in times of need. It is widely available in our food resources, such as nuts, legumes, whole grains, green vegetables, seafood and chocolate (although no one food contains very much).
In 1977 the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) stated that 80 percent of people in the USA were deficient in magnesium and predicted a death rate of over 3 million in the next 21 years from this cause alone. (As a result, the FDA was charged, in a Californian lawsuit, with ‘genocide’ in 1998 for failing to prevent this epidemic of deficiency.) In 1997 the NAS, in a follow-up study, confirmed that most Americans are magnesium-deficient.
The problem is likely to be over-processing of foodstuffs and the excessive consumption of fizzy drinks that contain phosphates, which compete with magnesium for absorption. Another cause of deficiency is an excess fitness regime. Quite simply, too much can be lost in body sweat and unreasonable exhaustion should ring a warning bell, as the British Olympic Paula Radcliffe discovered when she was forced to take magnesium injections (Times, January 21).
Malabsorption will also occur as a result of bowel surgery and excessive kidney loss from diuretics or alcohol are further causes. Diabetes mellitus, with its increased kidney excretion, may also prove a source of loss, which is worsened by the transport of magnesium into the tissues by insulin.
It is generally reckoned that we need 300 - 400 mg per day, although 450 mg per day is a better target. The fundamental activity of magnesium resides in the way it is needed for hundreds of enzyme systems. In the production of energy from glucose, through the tricarboxylic cycle, adenosine diphosphate (ADP) is uprated to adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and magnesium catalyses this crucial energy reaction. Magnesium also catalyses synthesis of protein, fat and nucleic acids, together with cellular membrane transport systems.
Its manifold tasks in keeping us alive don’t end there. Together with calcium, magnesium gets involved with muscle contraction – calcium promoting contraction and magnesium inhibiting it. And the two minerals partner blood-clotting in the same way. As an extension of this, both calcium and magnesium have a role to play in the maintenance of blood pressure and the mechanics of breathing. It is also one of the many nutrients supporting the immune system.
This is all pretty important, so that it should come as no surprise that magnesium deficiency does us no good at all. This is particularly true of blood pressure and heart disease; a deficiency is found to be associated with hypertension and an increased risk of heart attack. Its interaction with calcium is thought to play a role in the formation of coronary heart disease and thrombus formation due to increased platelet stickiness.
To become deficient in magnesium requires a chronic lack of input because the kidney is very good at maintaining blood levels by shutting down excretion. So it becomes a matter of concern to osteopaths and naturopaths treating chronic fatigue.
Illnesses will cause magnesium deficiency in their own right. As noted before, one cause of deficiency is alcoholism. It is also associated with diabetes mellitus due to the increased urinary excretion and, as nutritionists at the Harvard School of Public Health drew attention to in a study (1), a significant increase in the risk of type II diabetes where there was an initial low intake of magnesium. It also impairs the secretion of parathyroid hormone and causes impairment of liver function as it progresses on to cirrhosis.
Problems to be expected from deficiency include a general fatigue and muscle weakness, with consequent aching in muscles and joints. The effect may be to cause muscle cramps and spasm, and this may be seen in hypertension particularly; and by the same token will affect heart muscle relaxation, causing arrhythmias. Other effects will be personality change, effects on the central nervous system, especially lack of coordination and an effect on gut motility. It has also been linked to diabetic retinopathy.
A study in 1994 (2) suggested that magnesium deficiency was associated with fibromyalgia, especially combined with selenium and thiamine deficiency. This was supported by a Belgian study in 1997 (3), which showed half of their chronic fatigue patients were magnesium-deficient.
Magnesium toxicity is not to be expected and is likely only as a result of very excessive intake of magnesium-containing supplements; but the effect on the heart, causing arrhythmias, may be fatal.
The clinical use of magnesium supplements is quite widespread and injections have been used in the treatment of ME/CFS disorders, although reports of its usefulness have been conflicting. A history of excessive exercise and possible dietary insufficiency, together with symptoms of fatigue and muscle weakness, may engender suspicion.
In general, estimation of serum magnesium may be unhelpful. Since it is very inexpensive and really very safe, there is a lot to be said for a trial of treatment. Oral salts are, of course, the easiest, although not very well absorbed. Magnesium chloride, the citrate, the gluconate and the sulphate are most commonly used. Injections weekly for 10 weeks have been used with some benefit being claimed. Since its main indication is in the relief of fatigue disorders it should certainly be thought of – but only in the context of any present thyroid and adrenal insufficiency being reliably treated first.
As a matter of interest, Laylander (4), writing about chronic fatigue, underlined the double effect of fluoride excess and magnesium deficiency on enzyme systems. When we learn that fizz-drinking, poorly fed children in Birmingham, fluoridated 40 years (5), are now developing Type II Diabetes, our anxieties become sharply focused; perhaps we can understand the thinking that led the FDA in America to being accused, through their own negligence, of causing millions of needless deaths. If an informed public anger, mindful of this, would challenge the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (who claim that fluoride, whether medicine or poison, does not fall within their brief), perhaps the disgraceful science that backs fluoride could be shown up for the fraud that it is.
- Lopez-Ridaura R, et al. Magnesium Intake and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes in Men and Women. Diabetes Care 2004:27:134-40.
- Eisinger J, et al. Selenium and magnesium status in fibromyalgia. Magnes Res 1994 Dec; 7(3-4):285-8.
- Moorkens G, Manuel Y, Keenoy B, et al. Magnesium deficit in a sample of the Belgian population presenting with chronic fatigue. Magnes Res 1997;10:329-37.
- Laylander JA. A Nutrient/Toxin Interaction Theory of the Etiology and Pathogenesis of Chronic Pain-Fatigue Syndromes, Parts I & II. Journal of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome 1999; 5:67-126.
- Etisham S, et al. Prevalence of Type II Diabetes in Children in Birmingham. Letter to Ed. BMJ 2001; 322:1428.
Over two-thirds of all Americans do not consume the recommended daily intake of magnesium. Even more alarming are data from a study showing that 19% of Americans do not consume even one-half of the government's recommended daily intake of magnesium. (1) It is therefore not surprising that disability and death from heart attack and stroke are the nation’s leading killers. The National Institutes of Health says, "Magnesium is needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. It helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function, keeps heart rhythm steady, supports a healthy immune system, and keeps bones strong. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes normal blood pressure, and is known to be involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis. There is an increased interest in the role of magnesium in preventing and managing disorders such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes." (2) Inadequate magnesium intake has also been associated with cancer, asthma, allergies, arthritis, osteoporosis, kidney stones, migraine headaches, menstrual cramps, PMS, tetany and cramps, and other conditions as well. (3) A list this long fully justifies increased concern about population-wide magnesium deficiency.
Foods high in magnesium include nuts, seeds, spinach, yogurt, wheat germ, and whole grains. Few Americans eat enough of these to ensure an adequate magnesium intake of 400 mg/day. Magnesium supplements are commonly available as inexpensive magnesium oxide in 100 or 250 mg tablets. For better absorption, physicians often prefer amino acid chelated magnesium tablets or magnesium citrate. Magnesium is available without prescription at discount and health food stores everywhere. People typically start supplementation with 200mg per day and may slowly increase to 600mg per day, taken in divided doses, some with each meal. (4,5) Persons with kidney failure should not take supplemental magnesium unless directed to by their physician. Otherwise, magnesium toxicity is extremely rare. There have been no deaths from dietary supplementation with magnesium. (6)