After our correspondence last week about mag and reflux, I did go out and get a chelated mag (only, no zinc, calcium, etc.) supplement. I got 250mg tablets, which I take with breakfast and with dinner. I also eat a pretty balanced diet, and then there's the paltry 50mg in my daily multi-vitamin.
Since I am a realtively healthy otherwise 40-year-old woman, I've read the recommended daily requirement for me is roughly 320mg. By adding the supplement, I know I'm way over that, but I understand by your posts on this board that absorption is not 100%. Can you tell me what is involved in absorption that makes it so the body doesn't absorb 100% of what is taken? I figure by overshooting the mark (taking into consideration true absorption levels) I am probably ending up where I should be. Thoughts??
Your question is a very good one but it is very involved and very complex with many variables. I certainly don't recommend you take more than what is on the container so that you get a much higher dose to absorb 100%.
There is no known way to test the absorption of minerals in the body at the cell level. But, all minerals have to be converted to an ionic form for absorption. A mineral like magnesium has to travel from the stomach to the small intestines ---pass through the intestine wall to evenually get in the blood stream and then get to the cell where it functions. The acidity at each stage is important.
Absorption begins by dissolving the mineral in the stomach. The object of eating proper food and taking minerals supplements is to get the minerals to the celluar level so they can do their job.
Your stomach has to be acidic-- from a pH of 2 to 7 -- above 7 is alkaline and will not absorb minerals. Some brand of mineral supplements are not completely dissolved in the stomach because stomach acids are changed by many factors from what you drink to food to medication. Some medication like PPIs and antiacids reduce stomach acid resulting in lower mineral absorbtion.
After minerals are dissolved, they travel to the small intestines and while in a certain area (length) of the small intestines they cross the intestinal wall to get in the blood stream. The length is not that long for mineral absorption so the transit time of passing food is important as well as pH-acid level. The faster the flow the less that is absorbed through the intestinal wall also the larger particle are not readily pass through or absorbed in the blood.
Minerals that are bonded to protein molecules are smaller and they pass more readily through the intestinal wall. There is some controversy about which supplement is best!! The body is very good at absorbing protein(amino acids). Minerals in food and supplements are chelated in the stomach for absorption. If they are already chelated minerals ---I think they are absorbed better. That is why I like chelated mineral asupplements better.
There is some antagonism between minerals for utilization. Balance of some mineral are very important for utiliztion like -- the ratio of calcium to magnesium should be 2 parts calcium to 1 part magnesium. Excess calcium intake can interfere with mineral absorption. Manganese in high doses also interferes with magnesium absorption. Too much zinc can deplete copper. Fiber intake decreases mineral absorption.
A magnesium intracellular screen test can be used to test for deficiency as well as test your magnesium level. A low magnesium level make almost every illness worse!!!
As you may know Books are written about this and it's not simple but it is understandable!!
Thanks so much! Keeping our bodies in nutritional balance is a balancing act indeed! I think I'm on the right track. I'm not taking more than the package says; it says take 1-2 tablets (250mg) per day with food. I've been taking one with breakfast and one with dinner. I am feeling better, though I caught a cold in the last few days and frankly couldn't tell whether my sore throat was due to the reflux or the cold! I went to my ENT on Friday and he looked down my throat and said it did look irritated and red, a la reflux. He gave me some Nexium samples. I told him about the magnesium, which I don't think he knew much about. I said I was going to wait until my cold passed and keep taking the magnesium for a couple more weeks to see what happens before diving into the Nexium. He thought that was just fine. He's great that way in that "whatever works" is good.
T--- That's good to have a Doctor that is open minded enough to accept that regular medicine is not the only way to treat problems!!!
One Doctor that I have read his books and articles is Dr Linus Pauling--- winner of 2 Nobel prizes. He said "You can trace every sickness, every disease and every ailment to a mineral deficiency"
He out lived all of his critics about the use of Vitamin C and the Common Cold. He was very active even in his 90'ties.
If his statement is true then we should all learn more and practice the principles of absorbing more minerals.
In out society today we suffer from problems that were just minor just 50 years ago. Fruits and veggies that supplied our minerals as well as vitamins are now grown in areas that the nutrients are depleted.
Signs of magnesium deficiency is: Muscle aches, pains, cramps, spasms, low bone density and early onset of cateracts.Confusion, sleep problems, seizures, IBS, diabetes, cardiovascular problems, heart arrhythmia, high BP, birth defects, osteoporsis, certain forms of cancer, depession, chronic fatigue, kidney stones--- and on --- and on!!!
This is just one mineral-- What about all the others your body needs for optimum health? Are you on the Right tract?? YOU BET !!
I write with some experience because I am living it --- in just 8 days~~~~ I will be 71 yo.