Study Links Magnesium Deficiency to Faster Ageing

A study released in 2008 has shown promising results for the anti-ageing capabilities of magnesium.

Run by Bruce Ames and a group of researchers at the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute in California, this study focused on the long-term effects of moderate magnesium deficiency on human fibroblasts; cells that provide a structural framework for many tissues in the body. From this research, Ames hoped to determine why magnesium deficiency predisposes people to disease.

They cultured the cells for their entire lifespan (a period of three to four months), to mimic the effects of a lack of magnesium. They found that while the cells survived and divided normally under moderate magnesium-depleted conditions, they appeared to become older quicker than cells grown in normal magnesium concentrations.

As mentioned in the press release, a lack of magnesium accelerates ageing in human cells, which may explain the link between any long-term deficiency and a higher risk of ageing-related diseases.

“Magnesium deficiency affects the way the cells age. Accelerated cellular ageing affects the way tissue functions,” said David Killilea, an associate staff scientist in the Institute.

“We are now thinking that cellular consequences of magnesium deficiency may be driving long-term chronic disease.”

Ames and Killilea suggested the markers of accelerated cellular ageing in magnesium-deficient cells may indicate that the cells were in triage mode, saving resources for indespensable metabolic processes at the expense of long-term function.

As for diagnosing and treating chronic moderate magnesium deficiency, there is no good laboratory marker for this type of condition. It tends to fly under the radar, the scientists said.

“You could be moderately deficient for a long time and not know it.” said Killilea.

Emed’s Comment:

Up to 75% of the Australian population is magnesium deficient, and as Killilea said in the release – you may not even know it.

Generally, if you follow a ‘standard’ Western diet, you will have a low magnesium levels. The more processed food, grains and junk that you eat, the lower this level falls.

A common misconception we hear is that magnesium is only useful for athletes, or for those who experience cramping, sore muscles on a regular basis. Though this is true, we should ALL be using a magnesium supplement everyday. Magnesium is responsible for many important processes in the body, including (but not limited to):

  • Important part of energy production (involved in over 300 enzyme reactions, mainly related to the production of energy)
  • Involved in cell production and maintenance
  • Relaxes and heals muscles
  • Required for nerve function
  • Stops calcium entry into blood vessel and heart cells, reducing blood pressure
  • Regulates calcium metabolism
  • Necessary for hormone activity
  • May help prevent diabetes
  • Can help to prevent kidney and gall stones

Magnesium is the second most common mineral in the body. Around 86% of the magnesium is found in the bones and muscles, with the rest being distributed between the other soft tissues (especially brain, heart, liver, kidney) and bodily fluids.

As you would have read, magnesium has the ability to promote, heal and maintain the cells of the body – yes, even the skin cells!

By keeping the cells of the body healthy, you are enabling your body to best fight disease and ill health – think cancer, heart disease, viruses and immobility. Basically, if you lack magnesium, you are allowing disease to run rampant, especially as you age.

If you want to prevent disease, and stay youthful and mobile well into old age, you must start supplementing with a good quality magnesium supplement.

But why can’t you just get it from food? Unfortunately, due to years of over-farming, the soil used to grow our vegies and fruit is nutrient and mineral-poor. This translates into vitamin and mineral-poor food. Add to that long storing times of food, our high intake of processed and ‘junk’ foods, and our bad habits (drinking, smoking, stress). Whether we like it or not, we are all deficient in important vitamins and minerals.

Supplementing our diet with natural medicine is designed to do exactly that; SUPPLEMENT. We still need to eat healthily everyday – natural medicine helps to fill in the gaps.

Emed stock a great range of top-quality (and high potency) magnesium supplements. Renowned for being fast-acting and effective, these exclusive Practitioner-Only products can be taken daily to boost your magnesium levels, prevent premature cellular aging and aid in a huge number of different bodily functions.

A healthy diet is a great starting point for a healthy life. Eating plenty of vegetables, fruit, lean meats, fish and dairy should make up your daily eating regime. Introduce a multivitamin into your family’s diet. A good multi contains the vitamins, minerals and nutrients that you may otherwise miss out on (and it’s a great way to ensure your kids are getting what they need everyday).

Eliminate grains/wheat from your diet – they’re only driving your pain, inflammation and illness and you don’t need them. Read more about how you can change your diet and feel better sooner rather than later.

Keep healthy, fit and strong with daily exercise. Exercise doesn’t mean slogging out 50km on the treadmill – 20 minutes a day to get your heart rate up will suffice. Exercise will help to keep lean muscle tissue and bones strong. What you do now will help to decide how mobile you are in old age.

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