I mentioned in my most recent blog post that I’d be sharing with you why your calcium supplement just isn’t enough when taken without magnesium, and I’m here to share that information with you!
There are two primary reasons why calcium is not enough when taken without magnesium:
1.The Standard American Diet is rich in calcium, but lacking in magnesium.
Hundreds of years ago people didn’t consume nearly the amount of calcium we do today. They didn’t drink milk from dairy cows, they didn’t eat such large amounts of cheese, yogurt and butter and they certainly didn’t drink calcium-infused orange juice. At the same time, they were eating more magnesium-rich foods (as compared to what we eat today).
However, the times have changed and in today’s world, we tend to eat a diet that is VERY high in calcium, while being extremely low in magnesium. While there should be a 1:1 ratio between calcium and magnesium, the Standard American Diet is said to have a 10:1 ratio between calcium and magnesium - it has ten times more calcium than it does magnesium. Calcium-infused orange juice has a 27:1 ratio – 27 times more calcium than magnesium!
Now, I want to be very clear. In no way am I saying calcium is the problem. Calcium is not the problem. The problem lies in the fact that, as a society, we are consuming calcium and magnesium out of proper proportions. Instead of having a 27:1 or a 10:1 ratio between calcium and magnesium, we should have a 1:1 ratio (received from all water, food and supplements we consume).
2.While the body stores up all calcium consumed, it flushes out any excess magnesium.
The human body was created to hold onto calcium. This is for our protection so that our body has enough calcium when it needs it. Remember, eons ago they weren’t eating large amounts of cheese and butter. The human body wasn’t exactly designed for a calcium-rich diet, but rather, to hold onto the calcium found in a low calcium diet.
The human body, on the other hand, never holds onto an excess of magnesium. In fact, magnesium is said to have a “fail-safe” mechanism. When we consume more magnesium than is needed (usually through supplementation), the body will flush out the excess through our stool.
In today’s world, we are not only consuming a lot more calcium than we are magnesium, but we’re also holding onto the excess calcium we consume. I think you can probably start to understand that the body’s desired 1:1 ratio between calcium and magnesium is often times out of balance for two reasons: 1) because we are consuming a diet that is rich in calcium, but often lacking in magnesium, and 2) because the body stores up calcium while it has a fail-safe mechanism that flushes out any excess magnesium.
So, what does this mean for our health?
An excess of calcium over magnesium in our bones is not a good thing! Too much calcium and not enough magnesium in our bones cause them to be very brittle and frail, making a fractured bone or hip all the more likely. With the right amount of magnesium, our bones become resilient and “flexible” and the prevention of broken bones is more likely.
Not only is this excess of calcium over magnesium not good for our bones, it is also not good for the rest of our body. When we have an excess of calcium over magnesium, the body simply cannot use it all. Therefore, as we learned, the excess calcium is stored in the body. The problem lies in the fact that the calcium is not only stored in our bones. It is also stored in our kidneys, coronary arteries, cartilage and even in our breast tissue.
For this very reason there is a very strong correlation between high calcium intake and heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, some forms of arthritis and even kidney stones and kidney disease.
We have been conditioned to believe that consuming foods rich in calcium and taking calcium supplements is one of the best things we can do for our bones and teeth. However, this may not be true.
In the words of Dr. Steven A. Abrams, MD, FAAP (Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics), professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, “Calcium is important, but, except for those children and adolescents with very low intakes, may not be more important than magnesium.”
In her book The Magnesium Miracle, Dr. Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D. refers to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, which reports, “Neither milk nor a high-calcium diet appears to reduce the risk of hip fractures.”
If you or someone you know struggles with bone and joint health, magnesium could be the missing part of your healthcare protocol! Check your inbox later this week for information about some of the best magnesium-rich foods as well as the most effective magnesium supplements.
Of course, I’d love to work with you individually. If you’re ready to have a live blood cell screening, simply respond to this email and I’d be glad to set up an appointment with you.
Or, click here if you’re interested in learning about the many things that can be discovered through a live blood cell screening.
Elizabeth Shepard, BS
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