Published: 01/20/2015 - Updated: 03/08/2020
Author: Dra. Loredana Lunadei, PhD
Is it really necessary to take magnesium supplements to stay healthy? Undoubtedly, a lot of people ask this question, even more so when there’s a lot of publicity sparking its consumption, be it in the form of miracle powders, pills, chewables, etc.
In my country, a famous doctor has made it plainly obvious, and some people call him doctor “magnesium”, because he hands it out, he recommends it, and highlights magnesium’s wonders on whichever TV or radio program show invites him on. And what’s more, he’s created his own brand with this product, which is in high demand, even abroad. No one doubts its prestige here, and yet, there are other respectable doctors that have torn apart the exacerbated, nearly miraculous properties, of magnesium, which are being spread.
A lot is said about this chemical elements, from it curing colds to healing diabetes, restoring the heart and alleviating asthma. Some supposed medical specialists say that it has miraculous properties for bones, improving the respiratory system, keeping the body young, and possessing an endless list of benefits. However, up to today, there are not scientific documents that put any faith in all of the aforementioned wonders.
What we do know, however, and what is readily accepted by the majority of doctors in traditional medicine is that magnesium can keep blood pressure balanced and is important for the body, just like vitamins.
It is very important to follow a healthy diet in order to prevent illnesses, as well as having good habits, choosing the fruits of mother nature. You don’t need to fill yourself up with products that claim to cure everything, without first consulting a medical professional.
Let us reiterate that yes, magnesium is an important element. It is essential for regulating functions related to hormones and neuromuscular, cardiovascular, and immunological functions. But the minimum required adult dose is only 300 to 350 mg a day.
We’re not trying to demonize or discredit magnesium’s benefits with this article, because we really do need it. But let’s be clear that manufactured, bottled or processed products are not the only means of obtaining it. This element can be obtained in the foods you consume daily.
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How to obtain Magnesium
Magnesium can be found in vegetables like spinach and lettuce. One way of determining if this mineral is present in vegetables is the color green, which comes from chlorophyll.
Other sources rich in magnesium are:
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Individuals that should take magnesium
In exceptional cases, some people require additional amount of magnesium, in addition to their dietary sources. Based on recommendations by the prestigious doctor Elmer Huerta, President of the American Cancer Society, those individuals include:
(As copied from their blog)
– Individuals that take medications that cause magnesium loss:
Diuretics: Lasix, Bumex, Edecrin and hydrochlorothiazide.
Antibiotics: Gentamicin and amphotericin
– Patients with poorly controlled diabetes (they lose a lot of potassium through their urine).
– Alcoholics: 30-60% of which are calculated to suffer from magnesium deficiency (because they don’t eat well).
– Patients with serious small intestine digestion problems (Crohn’s disease and gluten allergies, for example). Obviously these people cannot absorb magnesium from food.
– Patients with persistently low potassium and calcium levels.
– Elderly individuals with a poor diet or those that take several medications that interfere with magnesium absorption.
You have now been advised; healthy people do not need magnesium supplements. Every time you read about some wonder brand, miracle product, doubt first and then consult your doctor about it before self-medicating. It’s best to consume it naturally, whole, because mother nature always provides the necessary vitamins and minerals in the foods we eat.
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