For those not familiar with the complementary relationship between calcium and magnesium, the first and foremost fact that should be known is that they go hand in hand. If you have been following advice on taking calcium, but our dear, sweet magnesium has not come up in conversation… something is amiss.
A Balancing Act
It’s far past time that we cover the subject of electrolyte balance – specifically, the balance between calcium and magnesium. Among the top ten questions that we get asked frequently is, “How much magnesium should I be taking in relation to calcium?”
An absolutely vital question and one that is relatively simple to answer. In theory, that is.
But before we get to “how much,” let’s first touch on the “why.” Why do you need to take magnesium to balance your calcium, and why is the ratio so very critical?
Most importantly, calcium cannot be routed and utilized to its utmost without sufficient magnesium. These minerals play equally important roles, but simply opposite each other. Calcium is required for the contracting of muscles, whereas magnesium is needed to relax them. Calcium strengthens & hardens bones, but magnesium provides the elasticity and flex needed to keep them from shattering. Calcium stimulates nerves while magnesium soothes them.
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Study shows magnesium intake, absorption significantly associated with bone density in children
Parents are advised to make sure their children drink milk and eat other calcium-rich foods to build strong bones. Soon, they also may be urged to make sure their kids eat salmon, almonds and other foods high in magnesium — another nutrient that may play an important role in bone health, according to a study to be presented Sunday, May 5, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Washington, DC.
“Lots of nutrients are key for children to have healthy bones. One of these appears to be magnesium,” said lead author Steven A. Abrams MD, FAAP, 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.”
While it is known that magnesium is important for bone health in adults, few studies have looked at whether magnesium intake and absorption are related to bone mineral content in young children. This study aimed to fill that gap.
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Somebody Stop This Pain!
Anyone who has had the misfortune to have kidney stones knows that they’re nothing short of agony. Their likening to razor blades is fairly accurate, as the majority of them aren’t smooth, but rather jagged in nature. However, when walking into your doctor’s office to remedy this excruciating ailment, the solutions offered would often seem laughable if they were not woefully inadequate.
“Excuse me, Doctor, but how many Percocet should I take?”
Calcium + Oxalate = Kidney Stones
Calcium oxalate kidney stones can be prevented. And with proper attention to health they may also be dissolved over time, eliminating the need for surgery or medications. A look into their cause provides the clues.
Kidney stones are most commonly caused by hypercalciuria and/or hyperoxaluria. Due to either dietary excess of foods containing these components, or your body’s inability to break them down sufficiently, the presence of too much calcium or oxalate results in crystals being formed inside the kidneys.
When seeking advice from the average general practitioner, the most common recommendation is to drink more water, since being well hydrated dilutes the high concentrations of just about anything in the kidneys. Secondary is advice to cut down on foods that may exacerbate the problem, such as dairy (high in calcium) and berries (high in oxalates).
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